Released in 2009 Bodyguards And Assassins tells the story of Sun Yat Sen, who played an instrumental role in the overthrow of the Qing dynasty, and his arrival in Hong Kong to meet the 13 district representatives to discuss his revolution plans. But there are others who are desperate to get him assassinated. A group of rebels are gathered together and set out to protect Sun as he travels to the meeting place. The scene is set for an all-out battle between the assassins and those trying to protect him.
Firstly the film is fantastic to look at, the set design is wonderful and technical credits across the board are strong, including cinematography by Arthur Wong (Warlords) and production design by Kenneth Mak (Fearless).
Many fans complained about the lack of action in the first half, but I think this helps the story as we get to know the characters, the background they come from and the reasoning behind supporting the rebellion.
When the action shifts into gear it is excellently done, fast-paced, brutal and exciting. Donnie Yen although prominent on the poster is just one of many rebels but he does get to show his stuff in one fantastic chase scene.
An excellent supporting class includes Tony Leung, Simon Yam, Nicholas Tse, Wang Xueqi and Leon Lai.
Watch the film as a drama and you will be rewarded with a great film, a little nationalistic of course considering the subject matter but overall an enjoyable and very well made production and full marks to director Teddy Chen.
Bodyguards and Assassins has been released on Blu ray in Hong Kong UK and the USA and any of the discs are worth purchasing as this is a great action drama that should be in every action fans collection.
8 out of 10