PG13 107min 2007
Based on a Korean Legend. “Dragon Wars” is about two warring faction of Imoogi, giant serpents from the heavens, fighting over a girl that when consumed will ascend the consumer into a dragon. Every five hundred years the Imoogi are granted the ability to ascend from serpent to dragon. The Good Imoogi will protect Earth and the Bad Imoogi will bring destruction to Earth.
The story is surprisingly coherent and translated well from a Korean legend. The special effects are amazing. It’s a mixture of “King Kong”, “Godzilla” and “Showdown in Little Tokyo”.
Translated from a Korean legend and Americanized for a foreign film with mostly American cast it did surprise me how coherent it was. Most Asian legends have complicated plots and reasonings to them. The plot and action worked together in this one. You understood the reason of the characters even thought the story is predictable from the beginning.
This is the most expensive film in South Korean history. Filmed in 2004, it took three years for the special effects to be completed and when watching you can see why. These creatures are utterly everywhere in L.A. destroying everything. It is a visual marvel at what was put on screen. The special effects make up for what the story is lacking. There is an all out war fought in the middle of L.A. that is amazing to watch.
The back-story takes place in an Asian village in 1507 and the rest takes place in modern time. Jason Behr is a reporter looking for the big story and finds it in his destiny. He’s the reincarnate protector and lover of a 19 year old girl, Amanda Brooks, who’s destiny is to be scarified to the Imoogi, so that it may ascend into a dragon. Yes it does have the Asian sensibilities but it worked.
I give it 3/5 Gs.