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.
Review by cadillac20