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Ninja Assassin (2009)


Average Rating: 4.3/10
Reviews Counted: 113
Fresh: 29
Rotten: 84

Critics Consensus: Overly serious and incomprehensibly edited, Ninja Assassin fails to live up to the promise of its title.

Average Rating: 4.1/10
Reviews Counted: 27
Fresh: 6
Rotten: 21

Critics Consensus: Overly serious and incomprehensibly edited, Ninja Assassin fails to live up to the promise of its title.


Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 189,337


Movie Info

V for Vendetta director James McTeigue re-teams with that film's producers Larry and Andy Wachowski for this action-packed tale of a skilled assassin who was trained by a mythical secret society, and patiently awaits the day he will avenge the death of his best friend. Swept off the streets as a young boy, Raizo (Korean pop star Rain) is transformed into an unstoppable killing machine by a secret society known as the Ozunu Clan. The Ozunu Clan is so proficient at keeping their existence a secret … More

R (for strong bloody stylized violence throughout, and language)
Drama , Action & Adventure
Directed By:
Written By:
J. Michael Straczynski , Matthew Sand
In Theaters:
Mar 16, 2010
Box Office:
Warner Bros. Pictures/Dark Castle Ent.


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Critic Reviews for Ninja Assassin

All Critics (114) | Top Critics (27) | Fresh (29) | Rotten (84) | DVD (7)

A garish and poorly filmed chop-socky frolic that makes about as much sense as an Escher painting viewed through Vaseline-smudged Ray-Bans.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

Perhaps such phenomenal slaughter is best left to the imagination.

Full Review… | December 2, 2009
Time Out New York
Top Critic

The problem is that the fight sequences -- the only reason anyone sees a movie like this in the first place -- are muddy, chaotic and boring. Even diehard fans of this genre would be well advised to skip this one.

Full Review… | November 30, 2009
At the Movies
Top Critic

This saga, set in Berlin, is more committed to its bloodletting than to any of its characters.

Full Review… | November 25, 2009
New York Times
Top Critic

A movie that provides plenty of jolts but precious little pleasure.

Full Review… | November 25, 2009
Washington Post
Top Critic

This movie knows exactly what it is: Gonzo silliness about bodies turned into human salsa.

Full Review… | November 25, 2009
New York Post
Top Critic

Nothing more than an excuse for violent ninja fighting with a huge body count and plenty of blood - real and CGI.

Full Review… | July 21, 2012
7M Pictures

Ninja Assassin re-opens the door to a genre that has either been absorbed into conventional action movies via pilfered fight choreography or completely forgotten as a viable, creative foundation for interesting stories.

Full Review… | February 15, 2012

It would be hard to expect any surprises from a film called Ninja Assassin, but on the other hand, it would be hard to be disappointed by it either. It does exactly what it says on the tin.

Full Review… | April 20, 2011

Has too much story for one movie and ends as merely a mildly entertaining ninja actioner...

Full Review… | April 2, 2011
Cinema Crazed

... it's like a music video of violence that has lost the beat and doesn't care.

Full Review… | March 25, 2010, long, martial-arts fight.... Given the talents involved, we have to mourn what might have been.

Full Review… | March 7, 2010
Movie Metropolis

Decent ingredients but, as a whole, this is lacking in choreographic flair and plot substance.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Empire Magazine

Ninja Assassin is final proof that the once innovative Wachowski Brothers have indeed lost their creative mojo.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Times [UK]

The fight scenes are uninspired and I suspect post-pubescent audiences will be very bored.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010

The fight scenes are mostly great. And Rain, so dashing in Speed Racer, is something to behold. His precisely rippled and defined body is awe-inspiring.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Daily Telegraph

It truly wouldn't take much - a minor re-edit, a few arch looks to camera, a wiseacre sidekick named 'Shortballs' - to inch this utterly mystifying throwback into spoof territory.

January 22, 2010
Little White Lies

Ninja Assassin is little more than a sporadically diverting disposable movie that will probably spawn several straight-to-DVD sequels. The butcher's shop window is still a more fulfilling proposition though.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Digital Spy

The bulk of the fight sequences take place at bed-time so it's difficult to see exactly what's going on - it's like putting a colony of bats in a Magimix. In the dark.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Sky Movies

As it geysers forward from that claret-soaked opening scene, V For Vendetta director James McTeigue's mega-violent B-movie packs shock and gore and, to be frank, not much else.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Total Film

Since the fights are all digitally conjured up anyway, genuine thrills are at a minimum and the copious sprays of pixelated blood quickly pall.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Radio Times

For a film about silent assassins, it's phenomenally noisy. But if you're into swearing, decapitation and sliced-off limbs, and your brain has been reduced to mush by sitting in front of violent video games, this is the movie for you.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Daily Mail [UK]

Despite an insanely visceral opening sequence in which limbs are severed amid fountains of claret, we're all too soon left with a tedious police procedural, sprinkled with the odd fight scene that confuses more than thrills.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
Daily Mirror [UK]

When the slicing and dicing and blood-spurting become as unstoppably frenzied as they do in the course of Ninja Assassin, one's instinct is less to take fright than take 40 winks and hope to wake up when it's all over.

Full Review… | January 22, 2010

The first time we see heads roll it's entertaining. The second time it's boring. The eighth time...

Full Review… | January 22, 2010
This is London

Audience Reviews for Ninja Assassin


An interesting action flick with a throw back to all the ninja movies of the past. Awesome slick stylized fight scenes with lots of blood shed and tons of great ninja stuff. Automatic ninja stars for the win.

John Manard

Super Reviewer



Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

An oddly boring film, considering there is Ninja action basically non-stop, incredibly nasty wounds and deaths (even though clearly CGI ones). The problem is that there is not much of a story, or the one that's presented leaves us little to care about. A great example of how plenty of gore and violence does not equal entertainment.

Jens S.

Super Reviewer

A ninja who has turned his back on his clan fights to defend an Interpol researcher who is trying to uncover them and seek revenge upon his erstwhile master. No-one has the right to complain about the lack of depth or characterisation in this film. It's called Ninja Assassin for christ's sake. Essentially it's a mish-mash of ideas that are just an excuse for wildly over the top action sequences in which bad guys are sliced, diced and eviscerated left, right and centre; it has the "gangsters fighting against an invisible assassin" format of the Predator films, the "come with me if you want to live" character dynamic of The Terminator and the soldiers vs afore-mentioned invisible assassins finale that's straight out of Aliens. But unlike Doomsday which managed to completely balls up this mix of "influences", Ninja Assassin sticks to what it knows and presents a non-stop frenetic gorefest that's actually a lot of fun. The result reminded me of a Wachowski-fied version of Blade that's a bit thin on plot but makes up for it with above par effects and finely executed action. In fact the bad guys are very much in the vein of The Hand from the Wolverine comics and I would have been a lot happier if the Wolverine film had been handled in a similar way. Switch brain to neutral and enjoy.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

Ninja Assassin Quotes

Lord Ozunu:
Wherever you are, wherever you may go, you must never forget who you are. You are part of me, as I am part of you. This is the truth of your lives, and it will remain true after death.
– Submitted by Kyle S (2 years ago)
The breath I take after I kill you will be the first breath of my life.
– Submitted by Shelinda F (2 years ago)
I took a Tae Bo class once, but that is the extent of my kung-fu abilities.
– Submitted by troy r (3 years ago)
Lord Ozunu:
Most children are disappointments. Not worth the effort to raise.
– Submitted by troy r (3 years ago)
Its going to take more than a knitting needle to fuck me up boy!
– Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
I've investigated World Bank organizations, drug cartels, arms dealers, I've never faced this kind of thing! For Ninjas its fucking unbelievable!
– Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)

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