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Watch! Keanu Reeve’s 47 Ronin Trailer!

Universal Pictures Ireland just sent over the trailer for Keanu Reeve’s 47 Ronin. The film is a heavy fictionalised version of the tail of the forty-seven masterless samurai who avenged the death of their master Asano Naganori in the early part of the 18th century. I’ll admit that I’m rather lukewarm on the decision to cast Keanu Reeves as an original (half-Japanese half-English) character to headline the film, but the story which inspired the film is intriguing.

In Japan, the story is so influential that it has even spawned its own subgenre of fictionalised accounts of the event, Chūshingura, spanning various media. It’s easy to see the appeal of the tale, and it’s great that the story is getting this sort of high-profile release and adaptation from a major studio, even if some of the concessions to the mainstream seem a little unfortunate and potentially troublesome.

I’ll keep an open mind until the film’s release in December, as it’s impossible to gauge the execution until we actually see it. From the trailer below, it seems a little heavy on the oriental exoticism, but does look visually lavish. Barring the occasionally awkward piece of CGI, it’s certainly eye-catching and vivid. The colours are striking and some of the compositions look like they could be beautiful. Anyway, check it out below and make up your own mind.

2 Responses

  1. For goodness sake. They’ve cast Keanu Reeves in a film about 47 Japanese men, set in Japan, at a point in time when foreigners were forbidden to enter the country ON PAIN OF DEATH.

    Yes, a few Westerners were allowed into the country. A very few. Wiilliam Adams, the English Samurai http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Adams_(sailor) was one. But that was back in the late sixteenth century. He was the only Westerner to ever become a samurai, and that was under very special circumstances.

    There is no way a half English man could have become a samurai in Edo Japan. I’m surprised such a child wouldn’t have been killed at birth.

    Mighty Whitey leading the plot, AGAIN.

    • Yep. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that this part of the film worried me greatly. Part of me wonders what would happen if the studio dared to give a movie with a Japanese lead a major push? Is Keanu Reeves that big a draw?

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