Action/Adventure/Drama/History | Well Go USA Entertainment | Runtime: 130m | Rating: UR
Directed By: Han-min Kim
Starring: Park Hae-il, Sung-Ki Ahn, Myoung Gong, Yo-Han Byun, Hyeon-Jik Han, Sang-Kyung Han, Son Hyeon-ju, Jo Jae-yoon, Hyang-gi Kim
Synopsis: A depiction of the Battle of Hansan Island, in which Admiral Yi Sun-shin’s daring battle tactics and fierce spirit rallied the Joseon navy against advancing Wae invaders five years before the Battle of Myeongnyang.
Having not seen Admiral: Roaring Currents I wasn’t sure what to expect with Hansan: Rising Dragon. Even more, I wasn’t expecting this beautifully crafted, time-period ocean epic to capture my imagination the way it succeeded in doing so. This is the perfect movie for the summer season. A battle of the seas set 500 years ago that delivers intensity, gripping human emotion, and raging battles on the oceans that peak at gargantuan levels of spectacle. The movie delivers a captivating blend of epic battle sequences, military strategy, and human decision. I would have preferred a little more depth on who these real-life characters were. I was able to learn about them in pieces from their actions in battle but outside of that most of the characters are given surface level explorations.
It doesn’t get in the way though. It could be a hindrance to some, but like Tom Hanks in Greyhound, you don’t need that much time spent on civilian life to get to know a character when you can learn about them through their instincts and bravery in combat. Something Hanan: Rising Dragon is able to ride through its hefty runtime as these admirals try to outwit one another on the high seas with countries on the line. It’s easy to get swept up in the scale of the film after the opening battle. The following maneuvers and counter maneuvers effectively captivate, and it closes out with a phenomenal closing act that makes the term ‘massive battle’ feel like a gross understatement.
Technically this movie of course relies on an abundance of digital effects, and I think the visual appeal is amazing with one impressive shot after another. Visually this movie delivers climactic action on the seas I have never seen before, and the creative ambition taken into crafting these set-pieces is a sight to behold. The wardrobes and make-up are immaculate, and the detail in the production design will easily sweep you up and take you to another time and place for an immersive adventure that could rival anything else playing at a theater this summer.
Anthony J. Digioia II © 2022 SilverScreen Analysis. All Rights Reserved.