The Only Review of Ninja You’ll Ever Need
2009 was a good year for the ninja, as it saw a pretty decent resurgence. We saw a ninja movie in theaters for the first time in over 20 years. Sure, we had 3 Ninjas, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but true, serious ninjas are finally coming back.
One of the two movies released in 2009 is Ninja. A story, that I believe is either lifted, or an homage to Enter the Ninja, because it’s about a white dude who’s training in Japan, learning Ninjitsu, and the best student there who’s Japanese, isn’t down with that. Other than training in Ninjitsu, the dojo’s biggest priority is to protect a chest that contains the weapons and suit of a once great ninja leader, and it’s passed down, generation to generation.
Well, the Japanese ninja gets himself booted out, and feels it was rather injust. So, it’s up to Casey, the American orphan who’s been there since the ripe age of 12, to stop the bad guy before he can hijack the box and have it all to himself.
Casey is played by Scott Adkins, an up and comer in the martial arts movie scene. He’s kind of a mix between Statham and Jaa. In that, he’s got a lot of the same presence as Statham, but he’s more athletic in his fight scenes, yet not the talent of Jaa. He’s not a fantastic actor by any stretch, nor does he have the charisma of Seagal or Van Damme.
The guy who plays the bad guy, Tsuyoshi Ihara, is nothing to write home about, to be honest. He seems like a very generic actor, yet at the same time he has the ability to really seem like he enjoys the bad shit he’s doing.
As for the movie, it’s good. I don’t think it’s on the level of Enter the Ninja, or the first 2 American Ninjas, but it’s damn fine. I think it’s better than Ninja Assassin, because of the far more realistic nature of the film. We get a great amount of fight scenes, that are all shot well, and pretty kick ass. None of the aspect of the ninja is super natural, as in Ninja Assassin, which is what hurt that movie. We get a ton of classic elements, such as the bow n arrow, blow guns, shuriken, kasuri-gama, and CALTROPS BABY! HELL YEAH! Caltrops are the bad ass spikes that are basically like children’s jacks, but spiked and razor sharp. Revenge of the Ninja is the only movie to really use’em, so it was so awesome to see these bad boys here. We get a ton of great ninja scenes, such as classic one-vs-10 battles, silent assassinations, and good ninja vs bad ninja.
So, in the end, yeah, it’s a movie that is definitely worth viewing, and does the ninja genre a great deal of good. In the future, I hope other ninja projects go the way of Ninja, as per Ninja Assassin. Oh, and I hope that future actors are ACTUAL martial artists, and not fakes, like Rain.
3.75 caltrops to your motherfucking dome out of 5. Watch this ish, tis the bomb.