Oh blogathons, you give me a reason to write when I'm stalled out on entertainment to discuss. Sati over at Cinematic Corner has created the latest blogathon I am writing to join in - this one titled a Spin-off Blogathon. Here are the (abbreviated) rules (you can follow the link over to Cinematic Corner for the official rules):
1) Choose a character you love and would like to see as a leading character in a movie.
2) Don't choose leading characters or supporting characters with lots of screen time.
3) You can use TV characters.
4) Include the logo and link back to Sati's post.
I don't think I ever typed a review up for this movie. I had a hard time putting into words my feelings on it. And even now I'd struggle with it (though later I'll tell you it's primarily disappointment I felt). Thankfully this post is irrelevant to my feelings on the film itself. So, my choice for the blogathon is a character that isn't even given a name in the movie. IMDB credits him as "Foreman." It's amusing because the character was placed on a poster to promote the movie. Though he had only mere moments of screen time, through the power of a blogathon I can give him a movie. So, without further ado, I give you Foreman.
Rick Genest, the actor portraying our Foreman, was tragically underutilized in 47 Ronin. 47 Ronin had its issues - mainly it was super slow and super long (and part of my feeling that way is due to the crazy promotion of this movie as an action flick... it wasn't). As such, to go into Foreman's story, we need a spin-off (because good additions or no, we really don't want to add more running time to 47 Ronin). And what makes a Rick Genest character an interesting character? Well, look at him. The tattoos are real. The man is covered, head to toe, in anatomical tattoos (picture below is an advertisement he did for some sort of cover-up product).
My story for him, within the world of 47 Ronin, would be an origin story and would entail the gaining of the tattoos (which of coarse isn't simply sitting in a tattooing chair for lord knows how many hours). He starts off as a young man, and through tragedy is forced to become a hardened criminal seeking revenge (I'm a sucker for a good revenge flick). Only through an ancient curse (because they're always ancient) it turns out that any death he is responsible for gets painfully represented on his skin - forcing him to carry around his sins for all to see. His revenge is sweet, but leaves his body permanently "disfigured" (I know, that's not the right word. The man did this to himself as an expression, an art form, and is not a disfigurement. But this is a movie we're talking about). We end with where he begins in 47 Ronin.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
I went into 47 Ronin expecting an action flick, expecting Genest to hunt down Keanu and company after his escape from the docks. We got little action and Genest's role must be sitting on the editing room floor somewhere. At least now he has some backstory in my head and on this page (vague as I typed it).
Since I never did review 47 Ronin, I think you get a sense of the let-down I felt based on what I've said so far. It wasn't awful - once you move beyond the hope of action and accept you are watching a drawn-out (not nearly as effective) love story a la Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (which was excellent). If you haven't seen it, chances are there are better things you could be watching. If you feel you NEED to see it, just expect a slow burn of a movie and maybe you'll be less disappointed.