Ronin (1998)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: This is comparable to French Connection with great action, dynamic road chase scenes, and solid performances.

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Movie Info

When an international team of former intelligence agents and Cold War warriors meet in a warehouse, their adventure of love, friendship and betrayal has just begun. Like the honored masterless Samurai of hundreds of years ago, these modern day Ronin are embarking on their final covert mission -- to recover a mysterious briefcase for an unknown employer and to stay alive. The action-adventure is directed by legendary helmer John Frankenheimer.
Rating:
R (for strong violence and some language)
Genre:
Action & Adventure , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:

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Cast

Sean Bean
as Spence
Jean Reno
as Vincent
Jan Triska
as Dapper Gent
Steve Suissa
as Waiter in Nice
Julia Maraval
as Girl Hostage
Katarina Witt
as Natacha Kirilova
Amidou
as Man at Exchange
Dimitri Rafalsky
as Russian Interpreter
Vincent Schmitt
as Arles Messenger
Laurent Spielvogel
as Tourist in Nice
Ron Perkins
as The Man with the Newspaper
Michel Lonsdale
as Jean-Pierre
Leopoldine Serre
as Little Girl in Arles
Lionel Vitrant
as The 'Target'
Katia Tchenko
as Woman Hostage
Amanda Spencer
as Little Girl
Tolsty
as The 'Boss'
Dyna Gauzy
as Screaming Little Girl
Daniel Breton
as Sergi's Accomplice
Gerard Moulevrier
as Tour Guide
Gerard Touratier
as Ice Rink Security Guard
Christophe Maratier
as Armed Police Officer
Dominic Gugliametti
as Clown Iceskater
Alan Beckworth
as Clown Iceskater
Lou Maraval
as Little Girl in Arles
Frederic Schmalzbauer
as German Tour Guide
Ron Hiatt
as Fishmonger
Vladimir Tchernine
as Russian Mechanic
Cyril Prenout
as Mikhi's Bodyguard
Henry Moati
as Bartender
Pierre Forest
as C.R.S. Captain
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Critic Reviews for Ronin

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (14)

Ronin plays like death warmed over!

December 31, 1999
Boston Globe
Top Critic

John Frankenheimer used to make real movies.

December 31, 1999
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic

Clunky and contrived!

December 31, 1999
Mr. Showbiz
Top Critic

Run-of-the-Mill!

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Washington Post
Top Critic

Ronin is a generally familiar if murky and occasionally pretentious exercise.

December 31, 1999
Detroit News
Top Critic

At times, amid this movie's flurry of robustly filmed heists, betrayals and car chases, it's so good, you begin to wonder if inspiration and depth aren't overrated.

December 31, 1999
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Ronin

I had been meaning to see this one for a few years, and am happy to say that I finally got this one crossed off my list. Co-written by David Mamet using a pseudonym and some obscure person named J.D. Zeik, this is basically the last great film from acclaimed director John Frankenheimer. What we have here is a slick international caper set in post Cold War Europe (mainly France) about a group of mercenaries from various intelligence and spec. ops. backgrounds who are called together to steal a mysterious briefcase with unknown (and unrevealed contents) that is wanted by both Irish terrorists and Russian gangsters. As for the basic plot, that's pretty much it. A bunch of hired guns come together to do a job, but, like all great thrillers, there's plenty of twists, turns, and intrigue. Okay, so the plot isn't original, but that's not where the film shines. It excels in delivering lots of suspense, tension, atmosphere, some good shootouts, and some excellent car chases. We get roughly four or so prolonged chases, and they are quite awesome, especially since they're done practically. Frankenheimer could have used visual effects, but opted for realism, and the results are great. Robert De Niro leads an all star cast, and he's awesome as the guy who basically becomes the leader of this little mission. He brings a great deal of experience and world weariness, and this is probably his last major role as a bad ass, though he did have a few great moments in Killer Elite. He's joined by the always cool Jean Reno, a scenery chewing Sean Bean, Stellan Skarsgard in a fun weaselly turn, and a menacing Jonathan Pryce. It's not a total sausage fest though. Natascha McElhone makes for a decent femme fatale, and even figure skater Katarina Witt shows up for a minor role. The film was almost 100% shot on location throughout France, and it looks great. We get awesome set pieces through a variety of locales, and the execution is marvelous. The action is tremendous, and there's plenty of it. The film does have some quieter moments, and I loved the fairly intelligent take on the caper elements, with how their mission is planned, etc. I wouldn't go so far as to call this a thinking man's action thriller, but it is somewhat smart and doesn't totally relying on playing to the lowest common denominator. I dug the crap out of this film, and I'd maybe rate it slightly higher, but, I do think it is somewhat uneven as far as the pacing (at times), and the basic story, as I previously mentioned, is kinda weak. Overall though, this is a terrific movie and I highly recommend you check it out.

Chris Weber
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

A thrilling suspense/action film with some unexpected turns. A great cast.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer

A fun B-movie with one of the best car scene chases ever. Plot is lacking... but Robert De Niro is in it... He lifts this movie up. I loved the overall feel of this movie

Albert Kim
Albert Kim

Super Reviewer

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