Ronin (1998) 720p

Movie Poster
Ronin (1998) - Movie Poster
Action | Crime
Frame Rate:
23.976 fps
English 2.0  
Run Time:
122 min
IMDB Rating:
7.2 / 10 
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Directors: John Frankenheimer [Director] ,

Movie Description:
Ronin is the Japanese word used for Samurai without a master. In this case, the Ronin are outcast specialists of every kind, whose services are available to everyone - for money. Dierdre (undoubtedly from Ireland) hires several Ronin to form a team in order to retrieve an important suitcase from a man who is about to sell it to the Russians. After the mission has been completed successfully, the suitcase immediately gets switched by a member of the team who seems to work into his own pocket. The complex net of everyone tricking everyone begins to surface slowly, and deadly...


  • Ronin (1998) - Movie Scene 1
  • Ronin (1998) - Movie Scene 2
  • Ronin (1998) - Movie Scene 1

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Clothed Women in Action Films Are INVISIBLE To Male Viewers!

...........................................................from Pasto,Colombia...Via: L.A. CA., CALI, COLOMBIA...and ORLANDO, FL

"An Anti-Action, anti-formula movie" was my initial choice for a tag line for this review...but I wanted something more enticing! If you've gotten this far, you're probably looking for a little clarification. Here it is: It is indeed rare to encounter a truly original element in any movie. Much rarer still, is to have such originality overlooked completely by the viewing public. When this occurs, it really upsets me.

RONIN offers us just such an unheralded moment of cinematic history! Initially curious to see what percent of reviewers had commented on the totally unique and unprecedented selection of a female driver, in what is, undoubtedly,the most REALISTIC cinema chase sequence of the past 20 years, systematically, I began scouring the reviews. What I discovered has not ceased to amaze me! I would like to share the results with you, and let you measure your own reaction.

Out of the 212 reviews that were posted at the time, I carefully went over 70 of them! Only ONE reviewer used a name clearly belonging to woman. Unfortunately, she restricted herself to only 15 or 20 words, so she really didn't end up saying much of anything! (Of course, there were perhaps 7 or 8 anonymous reviews.) Of the 70 reviews, 50, or more, made reference to the chase scene. (Between 80 and 90 percent of those comments were basically positive.)

Although Robert De Niro and Jean Reno were the only two actors in the film who definitely had more on-screen time than Natascha McElhone, (Dierdre, the chase car driver from HELL!) around 20 reviewers commented on other actors, whose on-screen time wasn't half that of hers. Only 6 or 7 chose to mention her at all! Probably, more reviewers sited Katarina Witt's 3 or 4 minute cameo spot! (Of course, she was much more scantily clad than Ms. McElhone!)

Finally, out of 50, or so, who did talk about the chase scenes, ONLY ONE linked McElhone to them directly! Amazingly, paraphrasing here the reviewer's words, "The car chase scenes are very authentic. (Except that Natascha McElhone looks like she has never driven fast in her life!)" Well, all I can say is, after having screened the scene at least a dozen times, it seems to me that this reviewer was watching a different RONIN!

Some might argue that THELMA & LOUISE had car chases. These were all together different, because the movie revolved entirely around its title characters. In RONIN, nobody seems to make a big deal out of the fact, and it is actually Dierdre's boss who pointedly barks at her, "YOU DRIVE!" Is there a lesson to be learned here? Apparently, all this tends to bear out the title of this review..."Clothed women in Action films are invisible to male viewers!"

Sad, because RONIN has a lot more to offer than just the chase scenes. It pays yet another subtle tribute to the prowess of women, when an ex-East German operative (Stellan Skarsgaerd) says, "I've hired the very best sniper assassin...SHE never misses!" More than anything else, RONIN provides an utterly believable inside- track on the post-Cold War mercenary and the shadowy, detached world he inhabits, reminiscent of the insider's glimpse of real-world spies offered in the classic, The SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD. If it's John Woo style Action films that make your day...You'll probably find RONIN much too realistic, too cerebral, too noir and too explosion-less for your tastes!

On the other hand, if you like your Action movies well grounded in reality, RONIN is a near classic, anti-action, anti-formula film, with a most refreshing European aftertaste, that you will find quite engrossing and enjoyable!


An exciting film with tour de force performances by De Niro & Jean Reno?

The movie begins with a bunch of international mercenaries, five to be exact, gathering in a bistro in Paris? Working only for money, their job was strictly to take intact a metal suitcase from several men?very well armed? who'll be intent on preventing them? No information was given about its contents, value or purpose?

An extraordinary cast of actors forms the group:

Robert De Niro, the ex-CIA agent and expert strategist; Jean Reno, the French mercenary; Stellan Skarsgard, the mysterious computer professional; Sean Bean, the ace field man; and Skipp Sudduth, the specialist in driving getaway cars?

Dierdre (Natascha McElhone) is the icy Irishwoman who explains the mission, but she is not necessarily the one fully in charge? It seems that the 'handler' who pulls the strings is an Irish fugitive called Seamus (Jonathan Pryce).

The film becomes tense and very exciting when one of the five members double-crosses the rest of the team, replacing the suitcase and leaving with the one they got? Here appears a mysterious man? apparently in love with Natacha Kirilova played by Katarina Witt, the East German figure skater, 4-time world champion?interested in the suitcase?

"Ronin" combines exotic European locations with the most sophisticated movie car chase ever filmed on a superhighway when McElhone takes her black BMW through the wrong lanes followed by De Niro in a blue FWD Peugeot?

De Niro is great to watch as the tough Sam, who remains cool regardless of the peril of the operation? Equally not susceptible to alarm are Skarsgard and Reno? Natascha McElhone brings a chilling, glacial quality to the role of the forceful woman not afraid of anything?

Frankenheimer doesn't recapture the intensity he once created in movies like "The Manchurian Candidate," and the "French Connection"

Pay attention.

A great movie that you can't just watch with one eye. It starts slow, laying a strong foundation, and if it's on TV, it's easy to get lost by not paying attention at the beginning. However, it's an outstanding film, exploring the characters with a huge action movie in the background.

It's visually interesting and doesn't ever let you know the things you think you need to know, but by the end you've forgotten that you wanted to know them in the first place. Robert DeNiro gives a strong performance and doesn't get lost in some of the showiness he can deliver when he's making up for a weaker story, and the supporting cast is full of familiar faces, many of which blend so well into the characters they play that, again, you can become lost in the story (although this time, it a good way).
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