Work, summer in the garden, moderating the flood around the new Eva movie and a sudden backlog of things to review have kept posting light these last couple of weeks.
So, to start the catch-up:
Red Cliff is John Woo taking Hollywood production values to the Chinese film industry, in this 2 and a half hour epic -- and even at that length, there is little fat to cut out -- only a little bit of landscapes, some self-indulgence with the CGI, and the obligatory sex scene.
This is clearly a Chinese style action movie -- you can tell that the Generals of the army are the highest level fighters, with the hit-points and special feats to match, like hurling spears and catching them on the far side they go through the target -- and the action builds up in ever bigger skirmishes, up to the final climactic battle. It's really like a live action equivalent of Senkogu Basara, only without the Engrish, and with added bullet-time whenever they had something supposedly cool going on to merit it instead. (Me, I prefer the Engrish.)
The action movie of the summer, without a doubt.