War: Movie Review

by Ed Lau on September 29, 2007

Jet Li, Jason Statham, War, War movie

There seems to be a real market these days for mindless gunfight movies as there have been quite a few in recent memory. Films that market themselves as “shiny objects” for the movie-goer who just wants some explosions. Shoot ‘em Up, for example, is pretty much described as it’s title. It’s a sort of throwback to early ’90s era John Woo movies with thin plots and bags full of fully automatic weapons.

Admittedly, I was initially drawn to War, starring Jet Li and Jason Statham as two guys that just want to beat the living crap out of each other. They have actual roles but in all seriousness, everything is pretty much an afterthought to the action. Jet Li plays a government assassin ironically named “Rogue” because he turns against his former employers to the Yakuza. Statham is an Asian crime division cop who spends almost every waking moment hunting down the man he believes is responsible for killing his former partner.

Jet Li, Jason Statham, War, War movie

The storyline is standard Asian gangland fare with conflicts between the Japanese Yakuza and the Chinese Triads. The twists and turns with betrayal, murder and revenge are everywhere and create a semi-convoluted story that is a bit more confusing than it really should’ve been. A couple of them are genuinely interesting even though, personally, I thought it was a little predictable. That and we all know the best way to be an assassin is to wear black with sunglasses all the time and drive around in a Spyker. Talk about inconspicuous!

Jet Li, Jason Statham, War, War movie

All the action sequences are decent and entertaining but none are particularly memorable or groundbreaking. Actually, with guys like Li and Statham, I was a tad disappointed since…haven’t we seen this all before? Jet Li is badass, we get it. Does he have to be invincible every time? And if you’ve seen The Transporter, you’ll be thinking this is deja-vu since everything he does is about the same. There’s even guys coming at him with fire axes, which he ducks. Haven’t people learned that Statham can’t be killed with fire axes yet?

Jet Li, Jason Statham, War, War movie

Oh right, I should mention that Devon Aoki (from Sin City and one of those Fast and the Furious movies) makes an appearance in this. I’m not sure if she’s trying to be funny but her line delivery is…weird. That and she looks so deathly pale…

As you can tell, there isn’t much incentive to watch War but there is one very good one, actually. You can catch fellow blogger Leo Chiang in one of the shootout scenes as a Yakuza henchman.

Leo Chiang, Jet Li, Jason Statham, War, War movie

War is fairly pedestrian but if you just want to see a lot of bullets flying and Jason Statham avoid fire axes, then it’s not bad as long as you leave your brain at the door. However, there are certainly better action flicks out. I was expecting more from such badass headlining stars.

Verdict: 4.0 out of 10

in Entertainment

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Gdog September 29, 2007 at 11:01 pm

Hey, I had no idea local post whore Leo Chiang was in this movie! Cool! ;)


Leo September 30, 2007 at 9:45 pm

I haven’t even watched this movie yet.


Stephen September 30, 2007 at 3:44 am

He looks to happy in that shot to be a gangsta :lol:


krillz September 30, 2007 at 4:28 am

I bet he was about to waste someone in that scene thus the big smile :D


Leo September 30, 2007 at 9:44 pm

Actually we just came back from wasting a bunch of Chinese gangsters, then they come back and waste me :(
But I think I was laughing at the $$$ I made working on the film :)


malay blogger October 2, 2007 at 12:08 pm

i’ve yet to watch this … but since the rating is so low, i might not

might see it coz i’ve been a fan of leo since his BSG days


Leo January 2, 2008 at 1:11 am

I just bought the DVD today and saw the movie for the first time. I must say that it was better than I thought it would be. The DVD also has some nice extra features including the stunts that we did.


watch bones April 26, 2008 at 2:14 pm

I didn’t watch this movie but since you gave it a 4.0 i guess it was a good call not to watch it ;)


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