The Princess Blade is an old-fashioned tale of Samurai honor and revenge transposed to an apocalyptic near-future and featuring as its hero a deadly young heroine named Yuki (the aggressively adorable Yumiko Shaku). Director Shinsuke Sato tells the story without a speck of irony, and gives it a cool, stylish visual scheme spiced with the graceful fight choreography of Donnie Yen, a veteran of Hong Kong action movies. While the lack of irony is refreshing and the action passes muster, Sato plays it so straight that nothing about the film stands out as memorable. It has the feel of a too-faithful adaptation of its manga source material, and hearkens back to the Japanese samurai movies of the 1960s and '70s without adding anything to the genre but a slightly different setting.
THE PRINCESS BLADE (a.k.a. Shirayuki Hime) is based on the manga by Kazou Koike with the same name. The film is not a remake of the Japanese classic; "Lady Snowblood" (Lady Snowblood greatly influenced Tarantino's Kill Bill) but rather a tribute film to that classic. The film is a post-apocalyptic vision of the future; however, it does successfully preserve the essence and motif of Japanese … more