Returner (DTS)

Returner (DTS)


DVD Region 3

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Universe Laser & Video
Version
DVD Region 3

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Original Name  武者回歸
Starring Takeshi Kaneshiro, Ann Suzuki, Kirin Kiki, Goro Kishitani, Yukiko Okamoto, Mitsuru Murata
Director Takashi Yamazaki
Screen Format Anamorphic Wide Screen
Video Format NTSC
Audio Dolby Digital 5.1 / DTS
Language Japanese, Cantonese
Subtitles English, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese
Year 2003
Running Time 117 Minutes
Genre Sci-Fi
Version  Hong Kong
PAX-Code PAX0000062186
Catalog No.  DTS6398-5
Item Code  4895024941523

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customer reviews

Average rating:  (4.5 out of 5)
Total votes:4

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Please note that opinions expressed in any review are those of our customers and do not necessarily match those of the Play-Asia.com team.

skydalink (89) on 14, Oct. 2010 10:32 (HKT)
Nice movie
i like this movie. Maybe I am a sucker when it comes to this kind of movie. having Takeshi in the movie also doesn't hurt.
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limpingfish (4) on 19, Sep. 2004 06:58 (HKT)
No, I don\'t think so...
Don\'t be fooled. This isn\'t as good as you want it to be. Fine performances, with some nice comic timing from the leads, and some interesting action/sfx, are let down by ham-fisted pacing and a running time that\'s at least 20mins too long. Aside from a twist or two, the simple storyline goes from A to B in the longest time possible. Don\'t get me wrong, it\'s worth seeing, but it\'s NO classic!
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backstepprogram (15) on 14, Aug. 2004 21:19 (HKT)
A Great Popcorn Flick!
RETURNER is like the little engine that could.
Despite all best attempts to fly apart at its illogical seams, the film manages to muster a warm smile along thanks to some terrific special effects, some above-average Asian action sequences, and three performances that never quite take themselves -- or the plot -- too seriously.

The story is utterly painstakingly familiar territory to science fiction: an alien force threatens to invade the Earth. The twist here is that the invasion is a calculated response to the Japanese Space Force retrieving one of the alien\'s crashed pilots -- think of the events allegedly to have happened in Roswell, New Mexico, but with a Japanese relocation and markedly Asian accents. What the Space Force plans to do with the recovered pilot and the craft is never made clear, but those variables aren\'t important to the plot that brings in the Japanese Triads (are they ever far from a Hong Kong actioner?). Once they realize that the aliens possess technology superior to the Glock, they want it, and they\'ll stop at nothing -- including shooting beautiful Asian scientists -- to get it.

In short, have INDEPENDENCE DAY meet THE TERMINATOR with just a hint of CLOSE ENCOUNTERS and that lovable E.T. ... but I\'m sure that the comparisons don\'t stop there.

The principals are simple:

Miyamoto (played as part Bruce Willis and part James Dean by the winning Takeshi Kaneshiro) is a gun-for-hire trying to keep his neighborhood safe from the Triads. Always trying to find peace with his troubled past (he failed to aid a young friend whose organs were harvested by the film\'s major bad guy fifteen years ago -- this is, perhaps, the film\'s only truly grim sequence thankfully played out in flashback), Miyamoto lives life as a loner, on the edge, from hit job to hit job.

Milly (given a wonderful exuberance by Anne Suzuki) is a young girl from the future whose troubled past happens to reside in Miyamoto\'s distant future. As mankind has been virtually hunted to extinction, the last stand against the aliens fails miserably, but not before Milly can leap into a Time Shifter -- ala STARGATE -- that propels her back in time to exactly three days before the original events that brought the Earth and the aliens into conflict.

Thrown together by pure circumstance, Miyamoto and Milly -- two cinema social misfits -- inevitably join forces in the race to find the imprisoned extraterrestrial pilot and return him to his rightful species before the war to end mankind can commence.

Despite some hackneyed logic (a problem not uncommon to some Hong Kong vehicles), RETURNER manages to preserve a terrific pace through some wonderful editing, tongue-in-cheek acting, and some well-choreographed stunts. The film is not without its share of twists (did the aliens simply attack, or did mankind bring it on itself?), but these revelations are of little value to the already explored themes. Still, Director Takashi Yamazaki (also screenwriter) manages to kick up the \'dazzle factor\' every time the plot seems to be careening toward dreariness, and the \'race-against-time\' formula helps the viewer dismiss a few plot gaffes and accept this fun little film -- with some wonderful TRANSFORMER-esque creations near the conclusion -- for what it is:

Pure escapism.

Who knows? RETURNER might be worth another \'return.\'
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SN: 224 | 1007 { 58 } | | WS: 1 | | Cat: 970