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Sono Kumagai
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how you end a year is how you start a year...WARLORDS

and so i was preparing myself to go out...

1) buy some sundries including a reload coupon for my cellphone

2) get my cellphone charger which i left in the office

and then... Rachal called...odd...

"wanna catch a movie?"

"WHAT???!!! AGAIN?!"

"of course not the same movie~!"

"hmm...ok..."

"i'll come pick you up now!"

"you don't know which one is my house!"

"just tell me which side of the road..."

and so we went out...passing by the cinemas, looking at the billboards...I AM LEGEND...hmm... National Treasures...hmm...WARLORDS!!! both of us haven't watched that one, and we had several discussion in the office about going to watch it so here's the chance...good...

picked up my charger from the office, and off we go to Growball cinema...again...

it was almost 4pm and the next show won't be on until 17:45...

so went to grab a bit at the Palm Square food court...

went to Popular Bookstore and read some books...

and almost 17:30, so off we went up again to the cinema...

"wait...WHERE'S THE TICKET?!"

"you took it..."

"it's not here..."

"check again..."

"IT'S REALLY NOT HERE! I PUT IT TOGETHER WITH MY CELLPHONE!!"

o.O wut da...

and so Rachal went to report at the ticket counter and i saw Lian~ she supposedly said she will call me today and tell me where we're going for tea...but no calls from her and now HERE SHE IS!! she just came back from Scotland and is going off tomorrow...gave her a scare and left to search for Rachal...

and so we followed the supervisor to the entrance of the screening auditorium...they checked through the tickets and found none of our tickets there...so our entrance were permitted and the supervisor advised the usher to restrict entries to anybody holding our tickets...cool...

and as we sat down...i asked Rachal to check again...and i helped too...she suddenly thought of her jeans pockets and THERE THEY WERE!! urgh...WHAT A NEW YEAR~!

Warlords...

i shuddered for somewhat 3 minutes from the starting of the flick...having goosebumps all over my body...the gruesome sights of war and death... with this reaction, this flick has GOTTA BE AWESOME!! i can take periodical war films but i really hate modern war films with fighter gets and machine guns...

Spoiler Alert!! since i think majority of the people have watched this...and if you haven't, you'd probably have decided not to watch it since it's been out for a while now...so just let me spoil it for you

and we journey through General Pang QingYun's (Jet Li) voyage up and down his mortal life with Jiang WuYang's (Takeshi Kaneshiro) narration...it's been a long time since i last saw and heard Takeshi...it's good to see him around, bcuz we share similar identities

a defeated and cowardly general of 1,600 men, Pang QingYun is the sole survivor from his troop, after a lost in a battle with the Taiping rebels. Jet Li, a coward? that's a first for me...have you ever seen Jet Li play dead just to keep himself alive? wow! this is definitely worth my RM7!

whilst having Jet Li standing amongst thousands of dead bodies, i can't help to think, how much do these people get paid for playing dead? and there are many scenes with dead people lying around in this movie too...

without any sense of direction and suffering from extreme hunger, Pang wanders along with other war refugees. he followed a beautiful woman (Xu JingLei) all the way to her village until she finally realizes that she was being followed. not wanting to make the situation even more awkward, Pang decided to move along but starvation and exhaustion got the best of him and he collapses...

the woman, later known as Lian, took Pang to her refuge in the village. she took care of him until he was conscious, and they slept together! the next morning she was gone...(how surprising!) little did he realize that this woman will later shake his life to a higher extent...

Pang wandered around the city to seek for the woman as well as food. he pawned his armors and weapons for money to buy food. he heard that there will be food distribution in the town center. there, he met Jiang WuYang who was in charge of the food distribution. Jiang soon noticed Pang as he was wearing boots which were only worn by high ranks in the imperial army. Jiang attacks Pang in order to test Pang's ability and soon recruited him to join his gang of bandits.

Pang quickly received recognition from the head of bandits, Zhao ErHu after an attack in the mountains, seizing food from a troop of imperial army passing by. the three became blood brothers after swearing an oath whereby the life of the brothers are as of my own; those who threatens this brotherhood will be slaughtered; who among the brotherhood betrays will also be slaughtered.indeed, betrayal was slowly lurking, as Pang realizes that Lian is Zhao's woman...after a siege in town by a troop of imperial army, Pang suggests the bandits to join the imperial army under the power of Eunuch Chen. although there were objections within the gang, yet majority bowed to the decision of their 3 leaders.

800 soldiers, consist of bandits led by General Pang, backed by troops of 1,500 led by another general, they fought in the battle to capture the city of Shu. 800 commoners as vanguards and archers, they dashed towards the enemy of 5,000 trained forces. many died, yet somehow with Pang's experience in war, he fully utilized his 800 men and stirred the enemies. the 1,500 finally aided and they succeeded in conquering Shu.

with success in his sleeves, Pang's ego grew. paired by Zhao's desire to bring his men back to peaceful hometown, they planned for their next move: conquer SuZhou and take NanJing. Jiang being the youngest, naively holds strong to the oath of the brotherhood.

to succeed in war, you have no choice but to be ruthless. others will not have mercy on you, you must kill or be killed. indeed, war drives people crazy. war drove Pang crazy, crazy for power to gain more men and supplies to end the war; war drove Zhao crazy, seeing his men die one by one, and the prolonged war reaching no end any sooner; war drove Jiang crazy, killing with no mercy in order to protect what he deem is right.

war ended, NanJing conquered. Pang will soon be installed as Governor. yet is he able to take such responsibilities on his shoulders? he is but a general, an elite in war. disturbance in the imperial court. Zhao is soon visited by Kui, who is Pang's arch enemy after the defeat in the beginning of the film. Kui seeks alliance with Zhao but was ignored.

Zhao's character is one i think will die no matter what happens. even if Pang did not assign his assassination, he will also be the target of the imperial court to bring Pang down. Without the support from Zhao and Jiang, Pang is vulnerable to the forces in the imperial court. the death of Lian will not have prevented Zhao's death. Jiang has indeed over-estimated her worth between the two men. Pang is far too wise to have sacrificed Zhao for the pleasure of owning Lian.

Pang was assassinated on the day of his installation. not by Jiang, but a rifle of unknown influence. Jiang was sentenced to death as a scapegoat for Pang's assassination.

a film indeed worth watching and understanding its meanings behind.

a side note: i can't help but laugh at one very sad scene where one of the bandits died and his brother screamed "Xiao Wu! Xiao Wu!"..."Xiao Wu" is one of my friend's nickname and no wonder he said the movie disturbed him a lot...

over 12 years ago 0 likes  2 comments  0 shares
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So happens I was watching that movie on the first day of this year too! It's a powerful movie, but very confusing. I think it's trying to say no matter what direction you choose, nothing or no one is absolutely right, nor absolutely wrong. It's only a matter of perspective. To Andy Lau's character, it was his duty to save as many people as possible - even those thought of as his 'enemies'. To Lord Pang (Jet Li) it was his duty to his country to unite the capitals as this was he felt, his duty as a general. To Kineshiro, he felt he had to uphold his belief as a friend and brother of both men. He saw through his tinted glasses, the woman had made the brothers become rivals and the only way he could 'save' them all was to eliminate her first. I say it is confusing because even though all were right in their own way, killing each other should have been the last resort! It just goes to show how backward and stupid the thoughts and actions of people were in ancient times......
over 12 years ago
Bleupluie 89 sono
what a coincidence!! well, life is complicated, and no matter how complicated it gets, it's just our simple life... i wouldn't say their thinking were backward and stupid, they are still human, and i wouldn't think that people nowadays are all that bright as well... i think the movie is passing a message to tell us not to look at things from the surface, and not to judge a book by its cover =)
over 12 years ago

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english, cantonese, mandarin, japanese, korean, malay, hokkien
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January 7, 2006

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