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Mulan: Rise of the Warrior (live action review)

Mulan: Rise of the WarriorMulan: Rise of the Warrior

Director: Jingle Ma

Actors: Zhao Wei, Yu Rongguang, Chen Kun

Studio: Starlight International Media

Distributor: FUNimation

U.S. Release Date: Sept. 3rd, 2013

Format: DVD / Blu-ray / Feature Live Action Film / 110 minutes

Genre: Historical, Action, Adventure, Romance

Age Rating: TV MA

Overall Personal Rating: B


When the emperor of China issues a decree that all families in the Northern Provice must defend their homeland against the barbarian hordes, Mulan, a young girl from a military family without a male heir, disguises herself as a male soldier rather than expose her aging father to the horrors of the battlefield. As the invading armies close in, her remarkable courage and insight elevate her to the position of a true leader, who will sacrifice everything to defend her nation and bring honor to her family.


Yes, indeed boys and girls this is in fact is the chinese live action telling of the infamous story told by Walt Disney several years ago. As being a parent who’s children grew up in the age of Disney I am very familiar with the americanized version of this story. I spent many an afternoon watching it with both my son and daughter and thinking there must be more to this story that I should learn someday. Well, when I sat down to watch this movie I thought I would get a clearer understanding of the famous story of the woman general who in order to save her father disguises herself as a male and ran off to war.  To my surprise Disney wasn’t too far off. They sugar coated the war and violence but the story came across much the same.

Overall Grade: B

I’m not too sure that by making it a little grittier makes it any better and at times I just wanted to yell at the screen, but all in all it was a fine film and I believe that there are plenty of people who grew up with the american version that would just love to see this film. Honestly, I found the acting to be rather good. It was the script that left something to be desired. I felt like these actors really lived the parts but some of the lines and staging didn’t come across quite as believable. I am sure that plenty of warriors got promoted because of their heroics but I doubt that they would jump from foot solider to general because they made one brave move. Anyway, I know that there had to be some melodrama or the story would have ended being less charismatic and any director will tell any good story needs some flash just to survive the opening night.

I believe that Mulan: Rise of the Warrior will fin itself some fans that can see their beloved childhood story come to live in a very grown up way.