Ronin

"Excellent"

Ronin Review


Ronin is one of the few action movies that I can chew on without having to regurgitate. Normally, the action film fills me with a sort of dread. In fact, per my recollection, Ronin filled me with a sort of dread the first time around (despite Robert De Niro being in the film). You see, the action film is a sort of black hole for the industry. Money gets sucked into the film but it passes a sort of Event Horizon, at which point no matter how much money is poured in, the movie is still terrible. Sure, it is so absolutely dumb that you can sit back and enjoy it anyway, but the fact of the matter is that by the time the action movie has passed this point of no return you know you are watching trash.

Every year, millions get sucked into this vortex and all we get out of it are surgically enhanced chest shots of women who have just been bumped up from doing soft core. Of the three dozen odd action flicks that come out in any given year, only ten are worth viewing again. Of those ten, only two or three are actually good films. Ronin was actually good.

Mind you, I am not saying that it was good for an action movie. I'm saying that Ronin was good. Period. As I have said before, I do not grade on a curve.

So two years after theatrical release, and about ten hours after finishing the DVD, I still am able to only pawn off one-liners that say that Ronin rocks. Ronin is so fast that it makes Speed look like a little kid on a scooter.

Since I still haven't explained why Ronin rocks or what the hell Ronin is about, I should probably do so now. Director John Frankenheimer (The Manchurian Candidate) has proven himself to be a master of the spy-action flick. Robert De Niro has proven to be a master for character acting. Jean Reno has proved himself to be a master of intelligent action flicks, Godzilla notwithstanding. So, when three masters work together to create a thriller about a bunch of ex-spy mercenaries going trying to steal a case is it any surprise that the film rocks?

Of course, if they just stole the case and got it done with, the film wouldn't be much fun. So, there are a few double crosses along the way, and about a dozen plot twists.

But just because Ronin rocks, doesn't mean its perfect.

I wish I could say that Ronin didn't pretend to be anything more than a great action film. Instead, it pretends to be overly intelligent. Don't get me wrong, Ronin is smart, but not intelligent. It's a movie whose main characters shoot innocent people left and right... these aren't the right people to have moralize. Yet scriptwriters such as J.D. Zeik and Richard Weisz take such a simple film as Ronin and insert a message to it. The result is that Ronin is an hour and a half of good film with a half out of extra plot that should have been left on the editing room floor.

Still, Ronin's action scenes are top-notch, it's acting is great, and, for the last damn time, Ronin rocks.

You talkin' to my poster?



Ronin

Facts and Figures

Run time: 122 mins

In Theaters: Friday 25th September 1998

Box Office Worldwide: $41.6M

Budget: $55M

Distributed by: MGM/UA

Production compaines: United Artists, United Artists Corporation, FGM Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 68%
Fresh: 41 Rotten: 19

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer: Frank Mancuso Jr.

Starring: as Sam, as Vincent, as Deirdre, as Gregor, as Spence, as Seamus O'Rourke, as Larry, as Natacha Kirilova, as Jean-Pierre, Jan Tříska as Dapper Gent, Ron Perkins as Man with the Newspaper, Féodor Atkine as Mikhi, Bernard Bloch as Sergi, Dominic Gugliametti as Clown Ice Skater, Alan Beckworth as Clown Ice Skater, Daniel Breton as Sergi's Accomplice, as Man at Exchange (as Amidou Ben Messaoud), Léopoldine Serre as Arles Little Girl

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.