One of many joys of Netflix is that movies that beforehand failed to seek out an viewers in theaters will typically get a second probability to seize the viewers that eluded them the primary time. Such is the case with 47 Ronin, the 2013 motion movie starring Keanu Reeves. On the time of this publish, 47 Ronin has risen to No. 4 on Netflix’s high 10 hottest motion pictures of the week record. And for those who haven’t seen it but, we’re right here to inform you why 47 Ronin is value watching on Netflix.
The movie 47 Ronin is loosely impressed by a real story from Seventeenth-century Japan through which a lord was pressured to commit suicide by one in every of his political enemies. In response, 47 of the lord’s disgraced samurai hatched a long-term plan to avenge their fallen grasp, although they knew the try was unlawful and that they might be put to loss of life in the event that they succeeded. The movie provides fantasy components to the story, however an important addition was Reeves himself.
47 Ronin has one in every of Keanu Reeves’ greatest performances
Reeves hasn’t been onerous up for work in Hollywood since he first broke in through the ’80s. Nonetheless, his profession has had some down durations, notably after he completed the primary three movies in The Matrix collection. And 47 Ronin had the dangerous timing to reach in late 2013, a mere 10 months earlier than John Wick as soon as once more made Reeves into an motion icon. Would this movie have had a greater box-office performance if John Wick had come first? It’s certainly possible.
Interestingly, 47 Ronin is one of the few films that plays into Reeves’ biracial identity (although it should be noted that Reeves is not actually half-Japanese). In the movie, Reeves’ character is Kai, a half-English and half-Japanese orphan who is brought into the household of Lord Naganori Asano (Min Tanaka). And before you ask, yes, Kai was created for the film and he is not a part of the original historical account.
Historical accuracy doesn’t matter, because he’s Keanu. And this is a very reserved performance by Reeves, whose character doesn’t speak unless he has to. There is also a love subplot about Kai’s love for Lord Asano’s daughter, Mika Asano (Ko Shibasaki). But this is an action flick, and Reeves does not disappoint as a samurai warrior.
The movie has one of the most memorable villains ever
Considering that Rinko Kikuchi was nominated for an Oscar for her performance in Babel, she isn’t as well-known in America as she deserves to be. A few months prior to 47 Ronin‘s release, Kikuchi had a fan-favorite turn as Mako Mori in Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim. But in this film, Kikuchi gets to be absolutely unhinged as Mizuki, a witch who helps Lord Yoshinaka Kira (Tadanobu Asano) take down Lord Asano with her dark magic.
Naturally, there were no witches in the original account of the 47 Ronin, but Kikuchi’s performance is so much fun that few could argue against her inclusion here. She’s the one who gets to be over-the-top evil and mysterious. And that’s why she’s so delightful to watch.
Unfortunately, 47 Ronin was considered a box-office failure because it couldn’t come close to recouping its $175 million dollar budget. Ironically, the high budget for the film’s action and visual effects is one of the reasons why fans are rediscovering it now. This movie stands out from the pack on Netflix because it’s really beautiful to look at, and the action is great. And if samurai showdowns aren’t enough for you, there’s also a touch of magic and fantasy between the witch and some giant-like beings.
This movie wasn’t designed to be the start of a franchise, especially given the way that it ends. And yet there is actually a Netflix original film that serves as a sequel: Blade of the 47 Ronin. That movie takes place 300 years in the future. But for our money, we still prefer the original.
47 Ronin is now streaming on Netflix.