Skip to main content

I'm Getting Too Sappy Now / A Brief Review of "The Warrior's Way" (2010)

A long time ago I wrote that I can measure my progress as a human being by the fact that I'm starting to feel actual emotions when bad things happen in movies.  It's a shameful admission.

Well, now that I've had a kid, you can chalk up one more symptom; I actually cringe and get terrified now when there's a baby in peril.

I'm fully aware of how much of an asshole that makes me (or my past self, anyway).  Yes, there was a time when I would watch a movie where a baby was in danger and think, "Eh.  This score's a little trite.  The lighting's okay, though."

To be more specific, the movie that brought this up was The Warrior's Way, an over-the-top action movie about a crazy-awesome super-swordsman / assassin who kills ten billion people in "the East" and then stops short of his ultimate target; an infant girl who ostensibly will one day become the leader of a rival group.

The swordsman, showing evidence of what you would think is just a basic human sentiment, elects not to kill the baby.

Now, considering that it's in extremely poor taste to kill off a baby in a movie unless you're making either a Holocaust movie, a documentary, or some other "based on true events" film, it really should have come as no surprise to me that the baby would live.  Even so, I have to admit that the movie's efforts to tug at an enormous, neon-colored heart string worked.  I was immediately choked up, and I feel a little silly about it.

Like, we can all agree that seeing a baby get killed would be sad, right?  So it's not like I need to justify feeling sad at the thought of a baby dying?  That's not really up for debate, I hope.  It's just that I swear there's a 22 year old version of me somewhere watching this movie and scoffing, going, "Pfft.  What a shitty assassin.  She's right there, asshole!"

Considering that The Warrior's Way actually does kill off a different infant later, maybe that alternate version of me would still have liked the movie.  As for this universe's version of me, I coulda done without that second infant.  Could you at least have made him like 10 years old?  Still sad, but... c'mon, really?  What's with the baby murder, Warrior's Way?  You're just supposed to be a silly action movie about ninjas and cowboys and now I'm crying.


In case I may be misrepresenting my feelings on this movie, I would actually recommend it.  I thought it was a lot of fun and a lot smarter than you would expect it to be at face value.  I didn't particularly care for the way it decided to go "full epic" in the last act - complete with the now-boring "swarm of bad guys charging into battle" sequence that Marvel and Disney have hammered miles deep into the ground. But even so, it's a good watch.

Special honors also to the film for following through, at least partially, on having an interesting female lead who actually makes good on her promise to turn into an awesome knife-fighter.  Kate Bosworth's character wasn't utilized as fully as she should have been, but they gave her enough dimension and enough stuff to do that she really stands out as a pretty good character.