1 April 2014 6:02 AM, PDT | www.flickfilosopher.com | See recent FlickFilosopher news »

A handsome movie in many ways, but it feels like an unpolished first draft, one that can’t quite decide how fantastical it wants to be. I’m “biast” (pro): like Keanu Reeves more than most

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

This umpteenth iteration of the Japanese legend of the 47 ronin, or masterless samurai warriors, has its fair share of problems, but not as many as you’ve heard, and not as many as the presence of poor Keanu Reeves — who has unfairly become a cinematic punchline — may have led you to believe. Stolid, stoic Reeves (The Day the Earth Stood Still, Street Kings) is well-cast as the half-Japanese, half-British Kai, whose status as an outcast in xenophobic 18th-century Japan means he has to keep his eyes down and his mouth shut, and the actor maintains a modest presence throughout, »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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