“Possibly the second-worst thing to happen to Japan so far this century . . .

. . . “47 Ronin” is at once both a miserable movie and an extraordinary monument to how miserable the movie industry can be.”

Whoa, reviewers are going to have a hard time topping David Ehrlich at film.com on this one.

Nearly Brechtian in the extent to which its confrontational editing becomes the text, “47 Ronin” is flimflammed together with abrupt transitions, contextually amputated moments, and several different varieties of whiteout. What casual or future viewers might be able to graciously dismiss as catastrophic ineptitude, we are burdened with the clarity to understand as a symptom of a greater problem, the lump identifying a cancer that has already spread too far.

What an ungodly mess this movie is. Jim Vorel tracks the carnage over at the Herald Review (Decatur, IL).

Examination of this film, which releases nation-wide on Christmas Day, must begin with its first-time director Carl Erik Rinsch. Before “47 Ronin,” he was known for directing a largely plotless 4-minute sci-fi short film called “The Gift,” as well as a few TV commercials for BMW and Heineken (I guess he likes robots?). Some of the higher-ups at Universal were apparently very impressed with these, because they saw fit to hand Rinsch a starting budget of $175 million to direct a period piece epic based on one of Japan’s most famous national legends.
I just don’t understand how this could have gone so wrong – I mean, the guy directed commercials for BOTH Heineken and BMW.

Why are terrible movies so much fun to pick over? It’s like a natural disaster in which no one dies (except professionally).

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