Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Hydra - Movie Review

The Movie: Hydra

The Director: Kensuke Sonomura

The Cast: Masanori Mimoto, Miu, Tasuku Nagase

The Story: After retiring as an assassin, Takashi leads a quiet life as a chef at a sushi bar, where he secretly watches over the daughter of a former associate. His peace is short-lived: soon, he is recruited for a final job that he simply can’t refuse.

The Review:
The aging, retired assassin/badass brought back into the game thing seems to have become its very own genre after the success of movies like John Wick, Taken and many others over the years so why not add one more to the pile. Kensuke Sonomura has been in the business as a stuntman for almost two decades and this movie is his debut effort which makes sense because the stunt work and fight scenes are the highlights of the movie.

During the quieter moments, the director keeps things very moody like a classic noir thriller but then when it's time to throw down, the energy kicks into high gear and he shows off some of the best fight choreography I've seen in quite a while. It's not so much that he and the actors are creating groundbreaking new styles but the action is super fast paced and yet you can still see the story of the fight play out which made for a very thrilling and satisfying experience.

I have seen lead actor Masanori Mimoto in Yakuza Apocalypse and Kodoku: Mîtobôru mashin, both of which are very strange films so it was interesting to see him in a much more subdued acting role. I mean he hardly says anything and mostly just stands there, at least until it's time to fight. Once the proverbial bell rings Mimoto shows off some seriously superior skills and most of the fight scenes will leave you in awe of his performance.

Other than the fight choreography, there isn't a whole lot that stands out about this movie although I enjoyed it just the same. Sometimes you just want a movie to entertain you without throwing all the bells, whistles, and kitchen sinks thrown at you and this movie does exactly that. 

The Verdict:
Hydra is the martial arts action noir comedy thriller you never knew you needed. Stuntman Kensuke Sonomura's debut feature film is pretty much exactly what I was hoping it would be.

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