Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Rain Fall Trailer is Here

Finally the trailer for the forthcoming Rain Fall movie, based on the excellent debut novel by Barry Eisler has hit the net. You can peep it at the official movie site.

I am of two minds about this movie. I am a little concerned that the production seems to be primarily a Japanese production as I feel this will make any stateside release a fairly limited affair. On the other hand I am glad this is a Japanese production. While the main character, John Rain, is half-anglo, he had plastic surgery in order to appear more Japanese and therefore it only makes sense that a Japanese actor be cast to play him. The list of Japanese actors who are even somewhat familiar to U.S. audiences is fairly slim. Ken Watanabe springs to mind immediately due to his parts in "The Last Samurai," "Batman Begins," and "Letters from Iwo Jima." After that the only names that spring to mind are Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, whose most memorable role to me came in 1993's "Rising Sun," and Ken Takakura who would be most familiar to American audiences as either Uchiyama, the manager of the Dragons in "Mr. Baseball" or the Japanese cop Masahiro in "Black Rain." As much as I love Takakura's performances in these movies and keep meaning to track down some of his Japanese films, at the age of 77 he might be a little too old to plain John Rain. While John Rain is no spring chicken, he is deadly in hand-to-hand combat and a P-I-M-P to boot so I have trouble seeing Takakura in this role.

Beyond casting concerns there is the question of language. John Rain is Japanese as are the VAST majority of the supporting characters in this first novel. To my mind they need to be speaking Japanese to one another rather than English. I know that due to my long-running anime fandom I am FAR more comfortable with subtitles than probably 95% of the general movie-going public, but to have Japanese characters speaking English to one another always creates a disconnect for me. I think one of the best things about "Letters From Iwo Jima" was the fact that the movie was shot using spoken Japanese.

Anyway, that is quite enough from me. Regardless of who made the flick I am excited to see the trailer and hoping that this will get some sort of release stateside.

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