I wanted to see Ninja Assassin, but my girlfriend wants to see New Moon. So we compromised and watched both of them. This is the sort of compromise that leaves both people cranky and exhausted. Although that's mostly because, while both movies are exceedingly dumb, we watched New Moon last. And at least Ninja Assassin had some entertainment to go with its stupidity.
Okay, Ninja Assassin. This is the Dumb Movie for Boys. It stars Korean pop star Rain as a renegade ninja named Raito, who escaped from the clan years ago and is now bring hunted down. There are, as you might have guessed, a lot of fight scenes.
One thing I liked was that they put a lot of effort into making the ninjas feel like the mythical unstoppable killers of legend. You know how a lot of movies have ninjas that couldn't threaten a fuzzy bunny rabbit? These ninjas aren't like that. The shuriken in particular feel even more dangerous than bullets. They're huge, fast, sharp, and come whizzing out of the darkness, shattering whatever gets in their way. It's probably too late to make ninjas cool again, but this movie does what it can. And it's got Sho Kosugi as the old master ninja, which is a role he's played a million times.
The movie's really about two things: crazy fight scenes (with weapons that vary from "real" to "obviously CGI") and Rain With His Shirt Off. He's covered in scars and blood, but he always has time to pose with his abdominal muscles flexing. One character complains that he looks like he belongs in a boy band, but that's just because he chose one of the rare moments when Rain's wearing a shirt.
And speaking of characters taking off their shirts for no reason, let's move on to The Twilight Saga: New Moon. This is a boring story of Bella, a boring girl who has the magical power of making everybody fall in love with her. I felt sorry for the few mortal kids who befriended her in the first movie, since Bella just blows them off in favor of mooning (ha!) over Dreamy Edward Cullen, a pasty-faced vampire of Clan Mope.
In this movie, Bella's extra-cranky because her beloved Edward has left her because he's afraid that it's bad for her to hang around vampires. So after pouting for three months, she makes friends with Jacob, who turns out to be a werewolf and then tells her to stay away from him because he's afraid that it's bad for her to hang around werewolves. At this point, I think it's perfectly understandable if Bella gets some sort of a complex, what with all the boys she likes suddenly turning out to be supernatural killers and shoving her away. Although all she cares about is being left alone; she never really seems worried about the part about vampires and werewolves.
It's still not clear why everyone falls in love with Bella instantly. Her main traits are "quiet" and "twitchy". Apparently she has blood that smells very tasty. But that doesn't explain why a pre-werewolf Jacob cheerfully spends months helping her rebuild motorcycles. Wait, that's not quite right -- Jacob spends months rebuilding motorcycles for her while she watches and occasionally hands him tools. Then she rides for about twenty feet and crashes (without wearing a helmet) and the motorcycles are never mentioned again. Even though she's always pining over Edward, Jacob is happy to wait for her.
I guess if I have to pick a side, I'm on Team Jacob. But that's only if he doesn't have to end up with Bella. I'm on Team Jacob Seems Like a Nice Guy So Why Doesn't He Ditch Bella and Go Get Himself Someone Cool? He deserves better.
Actually, I liked a couple of the tertiary characters more than any of the main ones. There's one vampire named Emmett who somehow managed to be entertaining and interesting in both Twilight movies even though he's had like four lines. And I kind of liked the jackass Backup Werewolves. The moral is that I like characters who appear to be the only cheerful people in a World of Mope.
Also, after watching these two movies I would like to see something where everyone keeps their damn shirts on.