Goemon the Robin Hood of Japan DVD Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Feature 8.1
Video 9.0
Audio 9.0
Special Features 2.0
Total 8.0
Distributor: Madman
Classification: MA15+
Minutes: 123 Minutes
Reviewer: Peter Bourke

8.0


Goemon
The Robin Hood of Japan

I love Ninja films, especially ones that originate from the land of the rising sun which only adds more credibility these action orientated period flicks. Goemon is set in 1582, where the Feudal system ruled supreme and Samurai and ninja roamed the lands.

The movie itself is like an Eastern version of Robin Wood and the main character Goemon is played by Yosuke Eguchi, a master thief. Unfortunately these lands are soon about to overrun with blood because the warlord known as Nobunaga Oda has been assassinated by one of his commanders, vying for his power. Oda was the one lord who was needed to ensure that the country remained united but instead, his commander Mitsuhide has unleashed more bloodshed on the lands which is where Goemon gets caught up.

Unbeknown to Goemon the main protagonist of the film, he steals an ancient box which contained a secret pact responsible for the assassination attempt and if this was made public, Mitsuhide's power base would soon collapse. From there, Goemon becomes one of the most hunted men in Japan which is where the action begins and also the blood. Without spoiling the movie, this is a must see for movie for fans of Eastern Eye, especially those who love the Feudal era of Japan and of course, those who love over the top and quite lethal action scenes.

To compliment these acrobatic battles, the cinematography is visually quite stunning and truly delivers you to 16th century Japan. The authenticity of the locales, costumes and to an extinct, the characterisation, especially with Goemonís sense of honour is a joy to watch and itís quite easy to get carried away by it. With action, drama and even romance, it's movies like this that make many Western movies so hum-ho!

On DVD, Goemon is presented in glorious widescreen with vibrant colours and extremely sharp images. At times, especially with some of the more outrageous characters, Goemon has this almost supernatural or superhero type aspect to it. Imagine Batman meets the 300 and thatís what Goemon is. Add in a great Dolby Digital 5.1 track and when you hear the swords clash or the shurikens whiz by, itís almost like being in the battle displayed on the screen. Frigging cool! The special features are a little lacking and only contain the making of Goemon (interesting) and the original trailers.

In conclusion Goemon is a very well made action movie that not only pays homage to the era but sets up a unique story with some great characterisation of all involved. Rather than some of the 2D action movies of the past or those ridiculously crazy (not that this is a bad thing) films like Frankenstein Girl vs. Vampire Girl, Goemon is a more a grounded story and has a clearer picture of black versus white. Classic stuff!






 
 



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