I’d first heard of The Assassin, which has 78% on Rotten Tomatoes, on Battleship Pretension and I have wanted to see it after David Bax described it. One of my goals with the 366 movies is to watch films I’d normally not have sought out, and foreign films is definitely a big gap in my film viewing repertoire. The Assassin is the $0.99 rental on iTunes this week and I believe it is A Decent Watch.
Yinniang (Qi Shu) is an assassin set to kill her former betrothed Tian Ji’an (Chen Chang) and now military leader in North China. Will she choose to kill the man she was to marry or break the vow of her order.
I’m not sure if I’m picking the right time of day to watch movies with subtitles. I followed the plot for the most part, but there was a lot of elements that I was having a hard time keeping track of. Luckily, the film is beautiful and made it easy to watch.
Cinematographer Ping Bin Lee works a lot in with frame composition in this film. Toying with various elements in the foreground with the characters falling in the midground and secondary characters often through a doorway in the background. The depth created with this set up is great and the look the effect achieves if pretty interesting. The use of wide shots are used a lot outside of rooms to really see the beautiful scenery.
The movie could be considered slow as the action is few and far between, but I didn’t feel it was paced incorrectly. I think this is another example where I would have been more entrenched with the story if I hadn’t started the movie soon after waking up. The action sequences that are there are well choreographed and definitely show the precision of Yinniang’s skill.
I don’t think this is a bad movie, but it didn’t quite do it for me. If beautiful films with subtitles are your thing though, maybe you’d rate it a bit higher. Luckily, I resisted purchasing this one on Bluray and got it for the $0.99 price.