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#001. Babies and Bloodbaths

Everyone knows that it’s common sense to not bring your newborn child to an R-rated movie. And yet, two of the most exciting action movies I’ve seen involve babies as part of the plot. Of course, these are movies you can’t really take too seriously, and are more for fun than anything else.

The Warrior’s Way
Year: 2010
Rating: R
Length: 100 minutes / 1.66 hours

One of the genre mixtures that I think we see far too little of these days is the Samurai Western. Both genres are very similar in nature, usually having a silent, skilled and stoic main character put in a desolate and/or rural setting. This film artfully pulls both genres together in a massacre of steampunk-looking bandits and deadly ninjas. Although a lot of the style seemed to be pulled from an anime influence, the way it was presented made this a very cool looking movie.

The film opens with the main character, a samurai by the name of Yang (played by Dong-gun Jang) fulfilling his quest to become the best swordsman in the world. The spoils of this battle were a change of heart and the last surviving member of his enemies: a baby girl. Yang takes the girl and sets sail for America, where he hopes he can keep her safe by being as far from civilization as possible. As he integrates into the society of the old west, he cannot keep his past hidden for long. In order to keep the baby safe and to help the town, Yang calls on his years of being an assassin to ward off bandits led by a corrupt Colonel (Danny Huston). Teaming up with Lynne (Kate Bosworth) and Ronald (Geoffrey Rush), Yang learns the importance of community, but must ultimately do what is best for the baby princess.

Shoot ’em Up
Year: 2007
Rating: R
Length: 86 minutes / 1.43 hours

This movie is very up-front with what it’s offering. Action, and lots of it. There’s numerous shootouts in a variety of locations, all strung together with a constant cat-and-mouse between the antagonist and protagonist. And while the somewhat choreographed battles are entertaining, piecing together some of the mystery surrounding an abandoned baby helps to string the viewer along to the final showdown.

Mr. Smith (Clive Owen) is what you’d expect out of any homeless looking person who notices that something may be amiss when a pregnant woman waddles by him in the dead of night in a bad part of town. That’s right; he’s a mix between Rambo and Bugs Bunny. After delivering the woman’s baby in a flurry of bullets, Smith is now stuck with this newborn child. Being the right and upstanding citizen that he is, Smith takes the baby to the one person he knows who would probably be able to help: a “lady of the evening” by the name of Donna (Monica Bellucci). While Smith is convincing Donna to take the newborn, Hertz (Paul Giamatti) and a legion of gunmen are hot on Smith’s trail trying to recover the baby for Hertz’s employers. As the film progresses and the shootouts get increasingly ridiculous, more information is learned not only about the baby, but about Smith’s mysterious background as well.

2 sum it up: 2 films, 2 babies, 2 much blood

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3 responses to “#001. Babies and Bloodbaths

  1. Pingback: #049. Guy Ritchie « Cinema Connections

  2. Pingback: End of Act One | Cinema Connections

  3. Pingback: #067. Based on a Game | Cinema Connections

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