Shin ge jeon (The Divine Weapon) (2008)
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Critic Reviews for Shin ge jeon (The Divine Weapon)
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Audience Reviews for Shin ge jeon (The Divine Weapon)
This is a Korean film. I think this movie is loosely based on historical events. It is very well done but a little 'drawn out' as with other oriental epics. It is divided up with lots of action and the cinematography is great. I enjoyed this movie.
Divine Weapon is a period tale set in Korea that goes for entertainment value above all else. It's very Hollywood in many ways, feeling like a family swashbuckler. There are bumbling villains, hints at romance and a bit of slapstick and exaggerated facial expressions. It reminded me a lot of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Until about halfway through when suddenly there were violent sword fights and a scene involving a group of boys being castrated. This dramatic shift in tone is the films biggest weakness. Although the film does pick up in the second half, the first hour is a chore to get through. Luckily it all builds to a very satisfactory climax, one where the twists mid-battle keep on coming. Great effects and the underdog "up yours" mentality, make this film worth while. It's just a bit of a trek getting there.
Yu-jin Kim's The Divine Weapon is a Korean period piece with emphasis on a weapon not seen in other movies like this.
The story has a nice constant pace to it, albeit the film is a tad long at 2 hours and 15 minutes. Still, the film never drags or becomes fully boring. There is good emphasis on the design and building of the weapon, hence the title, and the 2 major characters of Seoul Joo and Hong-ri are great to watch. It is the supporting characters and the villains that lack anything to become really memorable.
There is a decent amount of swordplay and the choreography is good, but not impressive. The typical big battle at the end doesn't seem as epic as it should be, but watching the weapon being put into action is quite the sight to see, even though it may seem a bit out of place.
Jae-yeong Jeong and Eun-jeong Han carry this film from beginning to end. The supporting cast is also good, despite having some weak characters.
While The Divine Weapon isn't as divine as it sounds, it is still a movie to consider watching if time allows.
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