User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 353 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 71 out of 353
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  1. Mar 31, 2014
    0
    Just a god awful movie. I really can not describe it any better than that. I couldn't even get past the first 3 minutes of it before getting sick of it.
  2. May 9, 2014
    3
    They really should have let a Japanese director do this. Apart from the misleading narration and the exaggerated graphics, this film also lacks the profundity and strength the original story communicates, which is, true, very difficult to grasp if you weren't born and raised in Japan. As for Keanu Reeves, whom everybody keeps panning, he was an obvious marketing choice. Again, if they hadThey really should have let a Japanese director do this. Apart from the misleading narration and the exaggerated graphics, this film also lacks the profundity and strength the original story communicates, which is, true, very difficult to grasp if you weren't born and raised in Japan. As for Keanu Reeves, whom everybody keeps panning, he was an obvious marketing choice. Again, if they had let this be done by an all-Japanese crew, I think it would have been a wonderful piece of foreign cinema, faithful to the story and theme of the legend. I'd watch Princess Mononoke a thousand times over this. Expand
  3. Dec 30, 2013
    5
    Ultimately I enjoyed this movie as just a movie but what really sets it back is having the fantasy elements thrown in. This true legend of the 47 Ronin doesn't need fireballs and a mystical hair demon lady, it made the experience more cartoonish than serious. Another dropping point is Keanu Reaves, a random white guy samurai who's acting capability compares to the plank of wood peopleUltimately I enjoyed this movie as just a movie but what really sets it back is having the fantasy elements thrown in. This true legend of the 47 Ronin doesn't need fireballs and a mystical hair demon lady, it made the experience more cartoonish than serious. Another dropping point is Keanu Reaves, a random white guy samurai who's acting capability compares to the plank of wood people call Kristen Stewart. Luckily for this film Hiroyuki Sanada makes up for everything, he is a fantastic actor. I really enjoyed that they used mostly Japanese actors but again, they're speaking in english. I do not mean to insult or sound like a jerk but their accents added to the hilariousness of the film. When the shogunate speaks it's just funny. This is very unfortunate because Japanese is such a bad ass sounding language filled with great emotion. Had they allowed the actors to speak Japanese it would have elevated the experience. But for whatever reason Keanu Reaves had to be there.
    Another issue I have, that isn't the biggest deal, but it was PG13. Which means people get cut by a katana and there's no blood. That doesn't swing with me, the sharpest blade in history will make you bleed. Much like my issue with Krueger in Elysium, the giant towering fear-invoking demon samurai never really did anything in this movie and his death was an absolute cop out.
    This movie had so much potential to tell and recreate a true epic story. But it falls flat by trying to rely on the mystical and made up. Just tell the story, not every movie needs a dragon.
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  4. Jan 5, 2014
    6
    I personally enjoyed this film I can see critics point of view in some aspects of the movie, yet I found that the stunning visuals and the intense plot rescued some of the dull and boring aspects, such as the acting. However, the only noticeable actress that I believe deserves some sort of recognition, is the Japanese lady who plays the witch with two different eye colours. I wouldn'tI personally enjoyed this film I can see critics point of view in some aspects of the movie, yet I found that the stunning visuals and the intense plot rescued some of the dull and boring aspects, such as the acting. However, the only noticeable actress that I believe deserves some sort of recognition, is the Japanese lady who plays the witch with two different eye colours. I wouldn't recommend the film to everyone, but overall, the film deserves 6 out of 10. Expand
  5. Dec 28, 2013
    9
    The poor reviews from both critics and users are misguided; this was an excellent telling of a 300 year old legend, the Chushingura. The legend is based on a historical battle, and the multitude of versions of the Chushingura all tweak some element of the historical events in order to either feature a certain element, actor, or viewpoint. This movie does the same thing.

    The dialog is in
    The poor reviews from both critics and users are misguided; this was an excellent telling of a 300 year old legend, the Chushingura. The legend is based on a historical battle, and the multitude of versions of the Chushingura all tweak some element of the historical events in order to either feature a certain element, actor, or viewpoint. This movie does the same thing.

    The dialog is in keeping with typical Japanese historical/fantasy action movies--it's direct, stoic in manner, and yet expressive. All of the actors deliver their lines believably and with grace--much as one should expect from this story. Keanu Reaves, while the Hollywood A-lister, is not the focus, but his strengths lend themselves well to the story. The real stars are Hiroyuki Sanada as Oishi, Tadanobu Asano as Lord Kira, and Rinko Kikuchi as Mizuki--the three of them are the heart and soul of the movie, and the plot moves with them. The action is swift, clean, and beautiful, which shouldn't be a surprise given the level of talent in the film. The CG adds only the fantasy elements, and doesn't detract from the rest of the story.

    The love story between Lady Mika and Kai is the twist of this story, and it works well because it's not the central focus of the plot. It's a nice addition, one to get American female audiences involved, no doubt.

    Overall, I'm highly satisfied with this movie. The only reason I don't give it a 10/10 is because, for me, that rating is reserved for the most epic of movies. "47 Ronin" isn't epic, but it's definitely excellent.
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  6. Dec 26, 2013
    7
    "I didn't ask you to build me a watch, I only asked what time it was." Seems this is very true for this particular film: Critics want to deconstruct it down to every nuance while making sure to factor in the original cost, how the CGI compares to other films, etc. What so many people, including critics, seem to forget is that most people go to the movies for entertainment. They don't"I didn't ask you to build me a watch, I only asked what time it was." Seems this is very true for this particular film: Critics want to deconstruct it down to every nuance while making sure to factor in the original cost, how the CGI compares to other films, etc. What so many people, including critics, seem to forget is that most people go to the movies for entertainment. They don't care if the movie cost $1 or $1 billion to make. They don't care if the CGI wasn't as good as XYZ film or if a particular piece of dialogue wasn't great they simply want to be entertained for a couple hours. If it was widely publicized that it was made for only $40,000 would people have then said what a remarkable achievement it was?

    47 Ronin was a big surprise in that sense as it simply didn't disappoint as so many said it would. Indeed, we bought our 3D tickets before we read any reviews and started regretting the purchase before even seeing the film. We finally decided to go ahead with what was sure to be a terrible movie ticket investment four hardcore movie watchers who can generally be pretty objective when it comes to movies. As it turned out, the movie was entertaining in virtually every respect.

    Was it a great movie? Not necessarily, but it was good and certainly worth the ticket price. The story had a few lulls but none that inspired a "this is probably a good time to go to the bathroom" moment. The CGI was fine for 99% of the population, possibly excepting graphics designers and hardcore video game players. The dialogue was fine for 99% of the population, possibly excepting writers or professional speakers.

    Instead, this movie entertained right from the start and had a plot line that followed just fine. Sure, sure, perhaps a couple "roll your eyes" romantic moments but that is no major sin. The action scenes were good with a couple very minor "huh?" spots. The ending wasn't my cup of tea, but would seem to hold true with the storyline and the samurai code of that day. But hey, how many people in the US are well-versed in those ancient traditions? Probably less than 1%. Which again leaves it as a satisfying film for the other 99% of us.
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  7. Dec 27, 2013
    10
    Wow. I am shocked by the bad critic reviews. I thought this movie was excellent. Compelling story. Special effects support but don't dominate the story. The acting is a bit wooden at times, but it felt stylistically appropriate and didn't detract from the movie at all. I think it is an intentional nod to traditional Japanese form, but what do I know?

    Frankly this movie reminded me of
    Wow. I am shocked by the bad critic reviews. I thought this movie was excellent. Compelling story. Special effects support but don't dominate the story. The acting is a bit wooden at times, but it felt stylistically appropriate and didn't detract from the movie at all. I think it is an intentional nod to traditional Japanese form, but what do I know?

    Frankly this movie reminded me of one of the "Lord of the Rings" movies, Japanese style. It is a complete and intriguing universe. The cinematography and artistic direction feel coherent and well conceived. I feel like the characters were well developed and we understood their point of views by the end of the movie.

    I loved this movie. The time passed without notice while I was immersed in it. I'd see it again.
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  8. Dec 26, 2013
    1
    Bad action scenes that come and go way too fast. Bad writing and dialgoue. A dull narrative and uninspired acting all around, and some great cg for a not so great everything else. I love Keanu Reeves as an actor, and I was sure I'd love this movie but 47 Ronin is nothing short of a colossal disappointment.
  9. Dec 25, 2013
    6
    47 Ronin is a serviceable action movie that fails to either capture the emotional essence of the titular tale or bring anything genuinely fresh, invigorating, or memorable to its rendition. Character, relationship, and coherent tone are all sacrificed in service of an attempt to capitalize on an idea that theoretically has an appeal across multiple markets. Mildly entertaining and47 Ronin is a serviceable action movie that fails to either capture the emotional essence of the titular tale or bring anything genuinely fresh, invigorating, or memorable to its rendition. Character, relationship, and coherent tone are all sacrificed in service of an attempt to capitalize on an idea that theoretically has an appeal across multiple markets. Mildly entertaining and gorgeous to look at, 47 Ronin has little beneath the surface to recommend it. There are a few good fights, though. Expand
  10. Jan 11, 2014
    7
    47 Ronin is similar in feeling to "Immortals", "Conan the Barbarian" although really better than both of these, it is still not magnificent, but I surprisingly had a really good time throughout. The 3D is not the greatest ever, but has the 80's 3D effects of things popping out of the screen, deep and enjoyable. The plot is with no doubt similar to the above movies and has cliches but it is47 Ronin is similar in feeling to "Immortals", "Conan the Barbarian" although really better than both of these, it is still not magnificent, but I surprisingly had a really good time throughout. The 3D is not the greatest ever, but has the 80's 3D effects of things popping out of the screen, deep and enjoyable. The plot is with no doubt similar to the above movies and has cliches but it is just a popcorn over the top film. Expand
  11. Dec 28, 2013
    10
    I was applaud at the low scores that was posted. This 47 Ronin was very good from start to finish. I am not a polished writer, however, this was definitely a movie that my Finance' & I truly enjoyed. It should not have been rated lower than a 7 or 8. Thanks for reading my rating.
  12. Dec 29, 2013
    10
    My grandson and I went to see this movie today. The beginning was a little slow but once it got good it became AWESOME. Loved it. The 3D effect was amazing. I would recommend it highly.
  13. Dec 30, 2013
    7
    I saw this movie last night after my brother offered to pay. I admit I had been influenced by all the bad critic reviews. After having a night to reflect on my experience I honestly cannot for the life of me figure out what all the vitriol is about. It was well acted, a compelling story, action driven, and had a very satisfying ending. Hiroyuki Sanada's performance was exceptional. KR heldI saw this movie last night after my brother offered to pay. I admit I had been influenced by all the bad critic reviews. After having a night to reflect on my experience I honestly cannot for the life of me figure out what all the vitriol is about. It was well acted, a compelling story, action driven, and had a very satisfying ending. Hiroyuki Sanada's performance was exceptional. KR held his own. It never got sappy, or ridiculous. The CGI was well used. The emotion never seemed forced and the moments of humor were well-placed. The only thing this movie needed was some extended story and screen fight time with some of the characters on the fringes (the giant suit of armor guy and the pirate skeleton guy in particular). Was it the best movie I have seen this year, no, but this movie has no reason to be rated as low as it has been. Solid 7. Expand
  14. Dec 27, 2013
    3
    It's a real shame how bad this movie is because it has a very interesting, unique and promising ethos and premise, mixing Japenese culture with fantasy style adventure and lore. And with an all star cast what could go wrong? FLIPPING LOTS! Like bad story! Like bad action! Like bad characters! Like being exrusatingly dull and pointless! Why didn't they just make a film about the awesomeIt's a real shame how bad this movie is because it has a very interesting, unique and promising ethos and premise, mixing Japenese culture with fantasy style adventure and lore. And with an all star cast what could go wrong? FLIPPING LOTS! Like bad story! Like bad action! Like bad characters! Like being exrusatingly dull and pointless! Why didn't they just make a film about the awesome background of this world, because at the moment it's the only thing stopping this movie from getting a 0! Expand
  15. Dec 26, 2013
    4
    The tale of 47 Ronin is an ancient one, embellished with honorable vengeance in an exotic setting. While such premise could draw people attention, but there also lies its weakness, it's severely predictable. Many have used simple already known concept and made it into fresh interesting watch, unfortunately for this movie spamming CG is not amongst the way to accomplish that. Hindered byThe tale of 47 Ronin is an ancient one, embellished with honorable vengeance in an exotic setting. While such premise could draw people attention, but there also lies its weakness, it's severely predictable. Many have used simple already known concept and made it into fresh interesting watch, unfortunately for this movie spamming CG is not amongst the way to accomplish that. Hindered by poor acting, questionable cast and uneven storytelling, 47 Ronin feels detached and uninspiring despite its gorgeous visual.

    From graphical standpoint, it's actually quite impressive. Mythical creatures roam its vibrant realm, colors are brightly sleek and the dark contrast makes for a good view. It's certainly up to par on other fantasy movies, although it does detract from more historical portrayal of feudal Japan. There's a bit exaggeration in it as well, almost as if it's a westernized version of Japan. Some scenes, especially with the quick battles or bizarre giant characters, have the grayish murky tone of medieval fantasy like The Hobbits, and while the style direction is a bit excessive, seeing kimono in brimming flamboyant dye is rather peculiar, it's acceptably eye pleasing.

    Problems emerge when it tries to implement the story, which could be inspirational but remarkably falls flat. Keanu Reeves plays Kai, a half breed from an Englishman and a Japanese woman, the film's original character meant to portray an elevating underdog story, yet Reeves displays only one set of facial expression. He looks almost completely the same throughout the movie, there's barely any allure on seeing such monotonous hero. At the very least, his stiff performance can be considered as consistency, ironically so.

    The use of English is awkward as well, The Last Samurai did the multilingual tone and it worked, so it could have used Japanese for more authenticity. There's a nagging feeling that something is amiss, specifically when the movie enters supposedly dramatic moments. Setting that aside, the script isn't exactly great either, most of the time it goes overly melodramatic, as if it wants the archaic feel of Japanese classic but delivered in mediocre English.

    Casting is dubious, everyone has the samurai look and with boorish script, everyone is equally trapped in their respective dull role; there's your serious samurai and next to him are the sad samurai and funny samurai. Granted, there's not enough time to highlight them all, but none of them stand out or have the chance to perform to the fullest. Rinko Kikuchi, who earned Oscar and Golden Globe nomination for Babel, plays the evil witch, although her presence merely resembles a bitter high school cheerleader. The characters are just terribly shallow, when the leading male barely does robotic mumbles and the Oscar nominee looks that uncomfortable, it does nothing to draw the audience's interest.

    During the two hours of its length, the flow feels fragmented, mainly because it consists of drab scenes with little beautiful vista sprinkled in between. There is no epic scale engaging skirmish to behold, just some small CG fights, which is odd since the appeal should be a smaller group of warriors against mightier force. It does boast a spectacle, but no amount of cosmetic can justify the bland use of Japanese classic.
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  16. Dec 28, 2013
    10
    I, too, am truly shocked by the critic reviews.
    This movie was fantastic! It was moving, beautiful and truly entertaining! It deserves at least a solid 7, and I hope that I'm scoring it a ten the average score will be pushed up to the place where it belongs.
    Do not be out off by these reviews- if you want a solid, entertaining and moving film about the Samurai in Japan, this is a great
    I, too, am truly shocked by the critic reviews.
    This movie was fantastic! It was moving, beautiful and truly entertaining! It deserves at least a solid 7, and I hope that I'm scoring it a ten the average score will be pushed up to the place where it belongs.
    Do not be out off by these reviews- if you want a solid, entertaining and moving film about the Samurai in Japan, this is a great film for you!
    Thoroughly enjoyable.
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  17. Dec 26, 2013
    5
    Surprised to hear that this didn't even do well in Japan. It's OK, but not the star among holiday films: Pedestrian, effects-laden, fantastical retelling of a Japanese legend with fluent English by the mostly Japanese cast so no subtitles needed. One of those films that makes you wonder what happened to that Ted Logan we grew up on all charm and spewing catchphrases? What process ofSurprised to hear that this didn't even do well in Japan. It's OK, but not the star among holiday films: Pedestrian, effects-laden, fantastical retelling of a Japanese legend with fluent English by the mostly Japanese cast so no subtitles needed. One of those films that makes you wonder what happened to that Ted Logan we grew up on all charm and spewing catchphrases? What process of maturing turned Keanu Reeves into this stone-faced, emotionless guy? With few spoken lines and just the expressions on their faces, the rest of the cast could communicate tragedy, malevolence, or pride, but our half-breed is so lacking in personality that the actor who played his younger version could infuse his small part of the script with more feeling. Oh well, if you're like me you just came to be immersed in a small, if totally fictional piece of Japanese culture and not watch Mr. Reeves play another version of Neo. Expand
  18. Dec 25, 2013
    8
    It's ending maybe not satisfying for most audiences. But, 47 Ronin is a beautiful and entertaining adventure with a unique style and joyful dark tone.
  19. Dec 30, 2013
    10
    Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu Keanu
  20. Jan 10, 2014
    5
    Exiled samurai are called Ronin and 47 of them seek revenge when their master is killed by Japan's supreme warlord. They need the leadership of a noble half-breed (Keanu Reeves) to overcome mythical beasts, a powerful witch and a bunch of soldiers. This well-worn plot spends the first hour with lots of intrigue and a confusing array of characters. When it comes time to fight, the action isExiled samurai are called Ronin and 47 of them seek revenge when their master is killed by Japan's supreme warlord. They need the leadership of a noble half-breed (Keanu Reeves) to overcome mythical beasts, a powerful witch and a bunch of soldiers. This well-worn plot spends the first hour with lots of intrigue and a confusing array of characters. When it comes time to fight, the action is uninspired and unfocused. The only thing to recommend the film is the art direction: lovely scenery, stunning costumes and some cool effects. The overall outcome just feels flat: never particularly involving or exciting. Expand
  21. Dec 28, 2013
    9
    I don't understand why this movie is getting such poor reviews. It's a good story with some really good action scenes. It's not boring or slow I was enthralled the whole time. And the ending is unforgettable. The critics need to get a clue and quit taking themselves so seriously. I almost passed on a good movie because of poor reviews.
  22. Apr 22, 2014
    10
    I thoroughly enjoyed this fil. I even bought it on Blu-Ray after watching it in the theater. I really dont understand the bad reviews from the critics. And everyone Ive seen the movie with has a generally positive reaction to it. I view it is a fantasy flick, full of sorcary and demons set in Japan. A fantasy depiction of a real event. Nothing wrong with that. I just think that the allI thoroughly enjoyed this fil. I even bought it on Blu-Ray after watching it in the theater. I really dont understand the bad reviews from the critics. And everyone Ive seen the movie with has a generally positive reaction to it. I view it is a fantasy flick, full of sorcary and demons set in Japan. A fantasy depiction of a real event. Nothing wrong with that. I just think that the all japanese cast except for Mr. Reeves didnt flow well with the american audience and the fact that as the main character keanu Reeves didnt rub too well with japanese audiences. However these racial issues were addressed in the film an justified. Keanu Reeves character was a half breed and it was well established and in context to the story of the film. And i can appreciate the all Japanese cast, if the film is set in japan, it should be that way. It was also a very pretty film to watch, especially on a large or 3D TV. The depiction of japan and characters wardrobe were absolutly awsome. The story telling was good and so was the pacing. So i dont get all the bad criticism the film has gotten. Expand
  23. Dec 30, 2013
    8
    I honestly do not know what the critics are smoking. This movie is fairly decent. Do I want see it again? Not in the theater, but most definitely when it comes out on Netflix or Redbox.
  24. Jan 7, 2014
    8
    Decent movie. understand some of the complaints on storytelling, but enough action to keep it interesting. beautiful shots here and there, some fun creatures, decent swordplay. could have been better as many movies can, but an enjoyable cold winter day story.
  25. Dec 27, 2013
    10
    I thought it was an enjoyable fantasy-action movie with a special style and an unexpected ending (I didn’t know the Japanese legend). It was well worth the entrance fee and the time spent watching it.
  26. Dec 28, 2013
    8
    Wow don't understand very low scores from some viewers or so called "critics".Movie wasn't a masterpiece of course but I found it enjoyable.If you are looking for non-stop action with crazy over the top special effects on every corner then you are better off staying home.For the rest of you ,please familiarize yourself with the legend of 47 Ronin and then go see a movie and try to enjoyWow don't understand very low scores from some viewers or so called "critics".Movie wasn't a masterpiece of course but I found it enjoyable.If you are looking for non-stop action with crazy over the top special effects on every corner then you are better off staying home.For the rest of you ,please familiarize yourself with the legend of 47 Ronin and then go see a movie and try to enjoy yourself. Expand
  27. Jan 2, 2014
    10
    I totally enjoyed this movie... I don't get how the critics favor anchorman over this movie...personally I refuse to go see what is already obviously an obnoxious stupid movie...anyhow... 47 Ronin was beautifully shot, good storyline, good acting, good costumes, awesome special effects...and loved the action shots as well... while it may not have been historically accurate... it's aI totally enjoyed this movie... I don't get how the critics favor anchorman over this movie...personally I refuse to go see what is already obviously an obnoxious stupid movie...anyhow... 47 Ronin was beautifully shot, good storyline, good acting, good costumes, awesome special effects...and loved the action shots as well... while it may not have been historically accurate... it's a beautiful movie. Anyhow... I enjoyed it personally....perhaps its due to my growing up watching all the Kungfu, Karate movies in our old movie house as a kid... If you like Asian action films... I recommend this one. Expand
  28. Jan 7, 2014
    7
    Fantastic film about a legend from the East. Definitely worth it. The story with battles, philosophy and revenge what else you need? It was wonderful story. And the final was great.
  29. Jan 10, 2014
    9
    I went into this movie with essentially no expectations. After a cursory glance at reviews I thought it would be a mindless throw-away experience. However, I could not have been more wrong.

    This movie surpassed all of my expectations. I enjoyed the meld of the feudal Japanese setting, the un-overt use of fantasy elements infused with the legend of the 47 ronin. As far as I
    I went into this movie with essentially no expectations. After a cursory glance at reviews I thought it would be a mindless throw-away experience. However, I could not have been more wrong.

    This movie surpassed all of my expectations. I enjoyed the meld of the feudal Japanese setting, the un-overt use of fantasy elements infused with the legend of the 47 ronin.

    As far as I remember, the major plot points were covered and I was pleased to see that the end of the story was not changed to accommodate most cheesy Hollywood endings. It's an ending that Western audiences may not understand as being "happy" without having some knowledge of the Bushido code.

    In terms of pacing, I felt that the movie moved along at a brisk pace - never at any moment did I feel a scene overstayed it's welcome. In comparison, when I watched Hobbit: Desolation recently, I fell asleep probably 2-3 times due to many of the over-drawn scenes.

    Overall, I thought it was a great, entertaining movie. I really don't understand the major disparity between the critic and user reviews. If you are an action, fantasy, or adventure movie buff, I highly recommend this movie to you. Don't bother even considering the largely incorrect reviews from the so-called "pros".
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  30. Apr 20, 2014
    10
    this movie is great, c'mon! ok, it's to lame the skull men don't show more and the ending are sad but the story, the CGI and i'm not going to Keanu Reeves are great! it sad that woman with two diferent eyes don't fight more with keanu but still great
Metascore
28

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 21
  2. Negative: 12 out of 21
  1. 50
    This one never quite decides if it wants to be a big, boisterous epic or a solemn retelling, and it nearly disappears into the crack between the two.
  2. Reviewed by: Mike McCahill
    Dec 28, 2013
    40
    Hollywood's latest play for the growing Asian market revisits the ancient Japanese legend of self-sacrifice, hoping to offset its garbled narrative and grinding humourlessness with 3D and Keanu Reeves as a samurai Jesus.
  3. Reviewed by: David Hiltbrand
    Dec 28, 2013
    50
    An odd mix of stiff and sumptuous.