- Great action/drama from Vietnam 5/12/2007 12:00:00 AM by cadillac20
I haven't seen many Vietnamese films, but The Rebel was certainly a surprise. The trailer didn't do much for me, but I was able to see this at the VCFilmFestival in Little Tokyo, and was impressed. Just about everything involved in this film was well done and kept things entertaining and exciting.
The film tells the story of Vietnam, circa 1922. The French have occupied the land and to combat a rebellion against the French occupation, they enlisted several Vietnamese agents whose job it is to sniff out members of the resistance, and above all, catch their leader. The agent leading this pursuit is Van Cuong, whose questioning of his own actions eventually lead him to help the rebel leader's daughter, Vo Than Thuy.
The film is action heavy, and the action scenes are not only masterfully filmed, but authentic. There are no wires or cg, just raw, powerful martial arts that is well choreographed. These only add to the story and acting, which tell of an interesting part of history that is rarely explored in films. It's nice to see a Vietnamese film get some of the spotlight. Even though the film isn't entirely original, it is highly entertaining. The story itself is something we've seen before, where a man on the wrong side of justice eventually must defend the right side. However, the way it is portrayed makes it enduring and the characters are very interesting. Overall, I have only positive things to say about this film. But go and see it for yourself if you can find it. It's a good, slick, entertaining movie that should suit any fan of martial arts or dramatic films.
- A must for martial arts fans 3/10/2008 12:00:00 AM by ruhi-yaman
The most expensive Vietnamese film ever (it cost USD3 million to make - probably the lunch budget of Stallone's Rambo) is a rousing action/romance expertly directed by the Vietnamese/American filmmaker Charlie Nguyen. The old-fashioned story is about the 1922 rebellion against French colonialists and follows a familiar but pleasing path. However, if you are a martial arts fan, the film will be of particular interest for its excellent action scenes featuring little known Vietnamese martial art, Vo Thuat. Originally based on Northern Chinese Wushu (Chinese were the first superpower to invade this luckless land), Vietnamese martial arts system has developed incorporating the elements from the fighting styles of neigbouring countries. For many centuries it was the main form of defense for these people because their invaders (Chinese, French, Japanese) stripped them of all weapons. Both leads Johnnie Nguyen and the gorgeous actor/singer/model Vo Thanh Thuy are accomplished practitioners of the style and their prowess is obvious in the film. Dustin Nguyen (no relation, every second person is called Nguyen in Vietnam) makes a worthy villain with his own expertise in various Asian styles.
A must for martial arts fans. It will also be enjoyed by those who like a rousing action/romance.
- good movies 3/3/2008 12:00:00 AM by mr-blig
I'm Italian and I saw this movie in the original language with subtitles in English. the acting could be better, but it's not so bad, the main characters are well acted. One of the best part of the movie is the fighting: the martial art used is Vovinam, a Vietnamese arts, obviously. The fighting scene are full of realism and action, very good I think. The conversations are pretty good, nothing to say. Another good point is the beautiful landscapes of the Vietnamese country. i think it's a good movie, great and realistic fight. the plot is simple but well made, with suspense, romance, action...i hope it'll arrive in Italy or at least in Europe :)
- Excellent martial arts work 10/2/2008 12:00:00 AM by udar55
How is this for a change of pace - a martial arts flick from Vietnam! Johnny Nguyen (TOM YUM GOONG) stars as a Lieutenant enforcer for the French occupiers in the 1920s. He ends up sympathizing with the indigenous rebels and helping their cause when he falls for the leader's daughter (Thanh Van Ngo). This is a really entertaining film because it balances fantastic martial arts sequences (choreographed by lead Nguyen) against some good drama. The real standout here is former 21 JUMP STREET-er Dustin Nguyen as the main bad guy. He has a real Simon Yam-like presence and appears to do a lot of his own fighting. My only complaint would be the film does tend to drag during the middle section set in a work camp.
- Awesome Movie!!! 11/19/2007 12:00:00 AM by jngo-2
I'm totally impressed and surprised. To be honest I hadn't seen any good Vietnamese action movie at all in my entire life until I watched this one. The story gets more and more interesting as it goes toward the end. The martial art is awesome, gravity realistic unlike those Hong Kong suedo martial art movies where you can always feel the "invisible" wire on the actor's back. The actors in this movie are so beautiful and sexy; especially Ngo Thanh Van, she got the best look ever. Hopefully more movies like this will come out. I wanna learn more about Vietnamese history.
When this movie is on DVD?