director: Robert Schwentke (the captain, red)
starring: henry golding, andrew koji, takehiro hira and samara weaving
REVIEWER: lyall carter
A G.I. Joe spin-off centered around the character of Snake Eyes.
I’ve gotta admit: I kinda liked the original G.I.: Joe films. Pure popcorn flicks: big stars, action stacked and a bit cheesy, they are the perfect films to pop on as you settle in on a cold winter's night. But Snake Eyes ups the ante - BIG time. Snake Eyes is the perfect popcorn flick - a gritty origin story with intricate and exciting action sequences. This is the kinda film you need to see on the big screen.
Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins stars Henry Golding as Snake Eyes, a tenacious loner who is welcomed into an ancient Japanese clan called the Arashikage after saving the life of their heir apparent. Upon arrival in Japan, the Arashikage teach Snake Eyes the ways of the ninja warrior while also providing something he’s been longing for: a home. But, when secrets from his past are revealed, Snake Eyes’ honor and allegiance will be tested – even if that means losing the trust of those closest to him.
Snake Eyes plays like most superhero-esque origin tales. We get the inevitable tragic backstory and then a rise from the ashes from our hero into their fresh, new bad guy butt kicking identity.
The uniqueness of Snake Eyes comes from the Snake Eyes' motivation to join the Arashikage being hardly honourable. As these situations play out it develops Snake Eyes character before us, molding him into a likeable but flawed being.
While there are intricate, brutal and quite beautiful action sequences throughout from a ferocious fight on a fish dock to a beautiful battle leaping between buildings under Japan’s neon light sky, Snake Eyes is gritty in that it takes its time world and character building.
The Arashikage clan house and more widely Japan look incredible with every little detail captured intricately captured. It truly is a beautiful looking film and at a time when overseas travel is severely limited it completely transports you to another cultural world.
Henry Golding is superb in Snake Eyes and really holds his own as an action star lead with charisma that oozes from the screen. Andrew Koji, who stars as Tommy Arashikage, really holds his own with Golding in verbal and physical sparring making him an actor to watch. Samara Weaving is criminally underused in the role of Scarlett but does wonders with the little screen time she gets.
Snake Eyes is the perfect popcorn flick - a gritty origin story with intricate and exciting action sequences. This is the kinda film you need to see on the biggest screen possible.