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'The Warrior's Way' -- Asian Martial Arts in the Wild West
Posted on Mon, Dec 6, 2010 at 5:37 pm
by IDMA Editor

"The Warrior's Way" is actually a mélange of quite a number of other movies and TV shows, tossed into a pot, stirred up and cooked a little, and served up as something original. Sometimes it seems that way, until a familiar scene occurs.

Photo of movie poster from

The story is that of an unknown and unnamed warrior played by South Korean Dong-gun Jang (he is called "Yang" in the credits) living in an unnamed Asian country that seems to have the characteristics of the China of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon." Yang is an all powerful, unstoppable assassin, who belongs to the "Sad Flute Clan", and has been assigned to wipe out a rival clan to the last human being. He fulfills this assignment, up to a point, but spares the life of an infant girl. Instead of killing the baby, Yang flees to America with her.

Yang winds up in a derelict town in the Wild West, inhabited by ne'er do wells, including the members of a circus who seem to have lost their way. Kate Bosworth plays a woman with a past whom Yang teaches his version of martial arts. Geoffrey Rush is a burned out gun slinger. Tony Cox is a circus midget.

Photo of Kate Bosworth from

Photo of Geoffrey Rush from

Photo of Tony Cox from

At first Yang finds some measure of peace in the town, planting a garden, and running an Asian laundry. That peace is shattered when a gang of desperados under the command of a psychopath called the Colonel appears to wreck mayhem and death.

And, of course, the Sad Flute Clan is not pleased by the treason of its most cherished member. The Pacific is not wide enough to shield Yang from its vengeance.

One of the parlor games one can play while watching "The Warrior's Way" involves picking out all the movies and TV shows it stole from. There is a lot of "Kung Fu", the David Carradine show about a shao lin monk in the wild west. The cinematography is pure "300" with the green screen generated backdrops and the slow mo fight scenes with blood spray and leaping warriors. There is a little of every Clint Eastwood western made in the 1960s and 1970s. There is some of "Kill Bill", making "The Warrior's Way" seem like a Tarantino knockoff.

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