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Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Starring: Dennis Quaid, Ziyi Zhang, Lou Taylor Pucci, Chelcie Ross, Clifton Collins Jr, Patrick Fugit, Barry Shabaka Henley, Eric Balfour, Paul Dooley, Peter Stormare
Director: Jonas Åkerlund
Rating: M18 - Edited Version (Violence and Disturbing Scenes)
Year Made: 2008







Languages: English
Subtitles: English/Chinese
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time: 1 hr 33 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: InnoF
orm Media




At home, hardened police detective Aidan Breslin has grown increasingly distant from his two young sons Alex and Sean since the death of his wife. At work, he finds himself thrust into an investigation of perverse serial killings rooted in the Biblical prophecy of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. As Breslin grapples with each new revelation in the case, he slowly discovers a shocking connection between himself and the four suspects.


Being Asians, we are always excited to see Asians headlining foreign productions. But if the result of starring in a Hollywood movie is a less than desired one, other than making a joke out of the wrong decision, we also wonder what it takes for an Asian to shine in foreign lands. One figure who comes to mind has to a certain Zhang Ziyi (or Ziyi Zhang, if you want to call her the Hollywood way). Rush Hour 2, Memoirs of a Geisha and now this – is the starlet getting any better with her foray into Hollywood? Or do you remember her better for her exotic frolicks on the beach with her foreign boyfriend?

You can’t blame us for putting our attention on Zhang, especially the story of this Jonas Akerlund directed movie isn’t anything refreshing as compared to the much more superior Se7en directed by David Fincher. The story’s protagonist is Aidan Breslin, a bitter detective who is haunted by the death of his wife, and has since distanced himself emotionally from his sons. A series of gruesome murders come under his charge and he discovers a link between himself and the dark secrets behind the grisly deaths.

Credit does go the writer to base this screenplay on the Biblical prophecies concerning the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: War, Famine, Pestilence, and Death. It sure educated us a little more about the grim picture religion has painted for mankind. Other than that, this 93 minute movie seems to be an excuse for the director (who is a prolific music video director) to show us some really graphic violence and disturbing scenes (cue the M18 rating from our friends at the censorship board). In fact, this takes away attention from the story, and leaves us wanting to see more blood and gore. Oh, the sadistic nature of human beings.

Dennis Quaid headlines this movie as the tormented detective. He does a decent job of portraying the painful figure and carries the movie rather well. But when it comes to Zhang, we cannot help but chuckle every time she appears on screen. We know how good her grasp of the English language is, and don’t blame us if we snigger every time she has to spout a line in English. We also found her trying very hard to emote as an orphan who is out to get some lean and mean revenge. There is seriously some work to be done here. This mars the movie quite a bit, and it ends up being another predictable and unremarkable Hollywood movie which will be conveniently forgotten a few years down the road.



The visual transfer is fine, and the DVD boasts of a decent soundtrack which features Zhang’s badly spoken English lines in 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound.



Review by John Li

Posted on 12 October 2009


. Horsemen (Movie Review)

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This review is made possible with the kind support from InnoForm Media


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