I'll be straight with you. I'm no expert on Asian action cinema. That which I've seen I've often very much enjoyed, but I don't know the subgenres and key figures inside out and back to front like any true enthusiast should. As such, I feel pretty disengenuous sharing all these news reports on new Asian releases finding their way back west. But hey, I'm just doing my bit to pass on news that happens to come my way.
This particular bit of Asian action cinema is Goemon, a historical epic/fantasy martial arts extravaganza from Japanese director Kazuaki Kiriya:
"The year is 1582 and the ruler of Japan, Oda Nobunaga, has been brutally murdered leaving the country in a state of political chaos. Meanwhile, a chivalrous thief known as Goemon, whose loyalties lay with Nobunaga, has risen as a hero figure amongst the populace thanks to his propensity for stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. Goemon’s latest haul, stolen from one of his arch-enemies, includes a small wooden box of Western origin which he believes to be worthless and accidentally bestows upon a young street urchin. In truth, the box is a priceless artifact - a true Pandora’s box that holds a deep secret coveted and sought by Japan’s most powerful and deadly warlords.
Realising his error, Goemon seeks to regain possession of the box before it falls into the wrong hands. But its existence has also attracted the interests of a legendary swordsman, Matahachi, the legendary ninja Hattori Hanzo, and Goemon’s fearsome former friend and current rival, Saizo. With such a prize at stake, the stage is set for a series of bloody frays between Japan’s most skilled and deadly ninjas and swordsmen in a conflict that will have a profound effect on the country’s future."
That's the official synopsis. All I can say is... this shit looks off the chain.
Already available on Region 1 DVD, Goemon is coming to select UK cinemas from 23rd July courtesy of Momentum Pictures. From the visuals alone, looks like one that would be worth catching on the big screen.