Ghost Dog - The Way Of The Samurai details
|Starring:||Forest Whitaker, Henry Tormey, Camille Winbush, Frank Adonis, Cliff Gorman, RZA, Victor Argo, Henry Silva|
Ghost Dog - The Way Of The Samurai
|Run time:||1 hour 51 minutes|
|Rental release:||12 May 2008|
|Hearing impaired subtitles:||English|
Most helpful review
Different and thoughtfulBy Adam H. Gallimore from the middle of Dorset , 31 Jan 2005
[Highly rated reviewer]I am a big fan of assassin-type films and the premise for this sounded good. A lonely man known as Ghost Dog lives on the roof with his pigeons, but as one hit goes wrong, he ends up being chased by those who ordered the hit.
Rooted in japanese tradition and perpetrated by a large, silent black man, whose best friend runs an ice cream truck and speaks french, which Ghost Dog can't understand, this is very original and enjoyable.
Jim Jarmusch is an indie favourite, but I have been unable to see most of his films, this being the most well-known.
Forest Whitaker is very good and music by The RZA is also quality. Scenes of action are well handled, and the readings from the Harakure give the film a quality similar to the code that Ghost Dog follows.
Vwey different to mainstream action, this is recommended.
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bit of a slow burner but awrightBy a customer from London , 23 Sep 2010i like fw but this one is a slow burner fw is a loner recluse who is also a hitman he is assigned to do a job but does not wipe out the girl there is bounty on his head but fw gets there first it is a an alright rental but not gripping
No ghosts, no dogsBy hunneric (6 reviews) from London , 09 Apr 2010Its a bit of a risk, being a respected indie director with a loyal cult following and then deciding to do a genre picture.
Stay in your indie niche and everyone assumes that you're an auteur and you could direct the pants of the entire Hollywood sausage factory with one hand tied behind your back.Step out of the niche, have a go at a cliche afflicted genre like a hitman movie though and you're going to have to prove it.
Or not. If it flops you look like a pretentious, over-rated pseud lacking even the good manners to acknowledge the different skills of the sausage factory boys. If its really bad, it makes people look at your previous films and re-evaluate them.
Ghost Dog isn't quite so bad as to make you wonder what you saw in Jarmusch's previous films but it comes uncomfortably close. His use of archetypes reinforces the mythic quality of the drama in several of his films. But archetype is just a polite word for cliches that we happen to like. If the technique doesn't work, you're left with nothing but cliche.
As in this case.
It doesn't flatter this film that it was made a few years before Tony Soprano barged into the public consciousness. No modern film that sought to inhabit that millieu would dare to paint a bunch of small time Jersey gangsters as one dimensionally as Jarmusch does here. But, frankly there's very little excuse for this type of caricature at any time.
And as for Forest Whitaker himself - part of the appeal of the film was the idea of this hulking, crudely put together actor transforming himself into something graceful, something poetic. In the moody photography of the trailer, he whirls a sword amid his wheeling pigeons and brooding skyscape and he almost makes that transition from duckling to swan. In the film itself, he trudges about, almost comically flat footed on his way to the next bout of limply orchestrated gun play whilst his halting renditions of the code of the samurai are voiced over the top. Truly, this is dispiriting stuff.
Literally the only reason I can think of to see this film is the soundtrack. Avoid it
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Good soundtrack!By a customer from London , 02 Dec 2009A bit of an odd film. the humor is quite subtle at times. The film also seems like an excuse to play some of Rza,s favorite tunes, which were good.
Ghost dogBy gullyforth (16 reviews) from Swansea , 28 May 2009Bizarre and beautiful. Harks back to Kurisawa but in a contemporary setting. Forest Whiteker does such a good job it makes me forget and forgive Species
One of the Reasons Why I Still Go to the Movies...By a customer from London , 17 Apr 2009
THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS Show review anywayHideUnfortunately, I fear that many people who watch 'Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai' will not enjoy it. When I first watched the film, a number of audience members uttered aloud, 'What the hell is this movie about?' I imagine they were anticipating a far different -- and, dare I say, inferior -- type of film, like a cross between 'Friday' and a John Woo film. It is initially easy to think that, yes, the film is an eclectic syncretism of many genres and film formulas; but out of this mixture comes a new and refreshing invention, a film worth seeing that will no doubt keep open-minded viewers stimulated and awe-inspired.
I walked away from 'Ghost Dog' quietly hailing it as the best and most original film I've seen this year. When friends asked me what this film was 'about,' I honestly couldn't give a straight answer.
'Ghost Dog' is like a great poem, meticulously structured and detailed with loving touches, rich with multilevelled meanings. The art direction is subtle yet bold, with a color palate to suit every scene; the RZA's musical soundtrack, which you will want to own, is smooth and elegant, inspiring dream-like and meditative head-bobbing; the film's well-timed screwball-caliber sense of humor is astonishing (you may well find yourself laughing silly at unexpected moments); the film pirouettes effortlessly through a variety of themes: race relations, literature, loyalty, and even hip-hop; and, above all, 'Ghost Dog' is filled with great peformances and memorable characters.
Forest Whitaker, most notably, gives one of his finest performances as the film's title character (inadequately described as an 'insane but ethical assassin' by various critics). His is a poignant portrait of a bruised and lonely soul, fire-hardened by a samurai's discipline and sense of honor; his dynamic visage meanders smoothly from bliss to ferocity, with a haunting (and haunted) calmness, a flickering sense of compassion. In addition, Whitaker's lyrical readings from the 'Hagakure: Book of the Samurai', with his gravelly yet fluid voice, harmonize pure poetry with pure cinematic imagery -- something to be experienced rather than described. And his soulful relationship with his best friend, a Haitian ice cream vendor who speaks French but not a lick of English (while Ghost Dog himself speaks no French), is particularly touching, arcane, and possessed of an unsayable splendor.
Out of respect for the film, I dare not reveal any of the film's other details or surprises. Like any masterful art, 'Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai' is meant to be experienced rather than merely described. While many will find the film too bizarre -- especially for a palate accustomed to Hollywood's mainstream rigmarole -- I could say that, at the very least, 'Ghost Dog' will certainly please filmgoers in search of a new and inspiring entertainment.
'Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai' is an experience, and like all great films it feels too short. In a time when most mainstream films leave many of us hungry for new images, smarter stories, and great surprises -- 'Ghost Dog' is a film to nourish us.