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Dragon Wars: D-War (2007)

D-War (original title)
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Once in 500 years, ancient mythical creatures come to Earth, wreaking havoc and destruction. This time they must be stopped.

Director:

Hyung-rae Shim

Writer:

Hyung-rae Shim
Bottom Rated Movies #68 | 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jason Behr ... Ethan Kendrick
Amanda Brooks ... Sarah
Robert Forster ... Jack
Craig Robinson ... Bruce
Aimee Garcia ... Brandy
Chris Mulkey ... Agent Frank Pinsky
John Ales ... Agent Judah Campbell
Elizabeth Peña ... Agent Linda Perez (as Elizabeth Pena)
Billy Gardell ... Zoo Guard
Holmes Osborne ... Hypnotherapist
NiCole Robinson ... Psychiatrist
Geoff Pierson ... Secretary of Defense (as Geoffrey Pierson)
Cody Arens Cody Arens ... Young Ethan
Kevin Breznahan ... Reporter
Jody Carlson ... Sarah's Mother (as Jody L. Carlson)
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Storyline

Based on the Korean legend, unknown creatures will return and devastate the planet. Reporter Ethan Kendrick is called in to investigate the matter, and he arrives at the conclusion that a girl, stricken with a mysterious illness, named Sarah is suppose to help him. The Imoogi makes its way to Los Angeles, wreaking havoc and destruction. With the entire city under arms, will Ethan and Sarah make it in time to save the people of Los Angeles? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They've made our world their battleground See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and creature action | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

English | Korean

Release Date:

14 September 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dragon Wars: D-War See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$32,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,376,000, 16 September 2007

Gross USA:

$10,977,721

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$75,108,817
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(European Film Market)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the first Korean production in nearly three decades to receive wide theatrical release in the United States. See more »

Goofs

During the modern day battle with the Dragon forces, one police officer is seen firing on them from his car. The car is a Daewoo, which isn't used by any police forces in the US. See more »

Quotes

Young Ethan: What are you talking about?
See more »

Alternate Versions

The final edit for both the US and Korean versions of the film run approximately 92 minutes, considerably shorter than the 110 minute cut first shown at the American Film Market in Santa Monica, CA on November 4, 2006, and again at the Berlin Film Market on February 8, 2007. According to D-WAR production company Younggu Art Entertainment, the film was tightened to improve pacing based on feedback from preview screenings. See more »

Connections

Featured in Troldspejlet: Episode #39.6 (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Boilermaker
Written by Sarah Paul Ocampo, Aaron Huffman, Mark Dibeh and Bo Gilliland
Performed by Love Hotel
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User Reviews

 
A review of "D-War"
17 September 2007 | by dee.reidSee all my reviews

To review "D-War" (sometimes called "Dragon Wars" or "Dragon Wars: D-War") with any real depth would be an exercise in utter futility. I mean that, really. The film is a big, loud special effects bonanza the likes of which have been seen plenty of times on United States soil, but "D-War" is unique in the fact that it is not an American production, but an Asian one, specifically of the South Korean kind.

But just because it's a South Korean movie with American actors, does that really make it good? It's a yes/no/maybe so type of answer. "D-War" comes to us from South Korean import Hyung-rae Shim, who announced the project back in 2002 and has spent the last five years getting it off the ground. It's received mostly negative reviews here in the U.S. and in South Korea (where it set box office records for an opening week with an estimated five million viewers within a nine-day time-span), but the movie's special effects and action sequences are undeniably stunning. But it's a shame about the story and characters.

Supposedly based on an ancient Korean legend, a 200-meter-long Imoogi (a giant serpent) called Buraki is denied a chance at immortality when two young lovers who are destined to perform the ceremonial rights run away and perish in their escape. 500 years later in Los Angeles, the man is reincarnated as American news reporter Ethan (Jason Behr), who as a child was given a powerful pendant by an elderly antiques dealer named Jack (Robert Forster) and now has to find the reincarnated woman, Sarah (Amanda Brooks), before her 20th birthday.

Sure enough, in special effects sequences that seem right out of any Asian monster flick made in the last 50 years, the dragon Buraki reappears with his seemingly invincible army of demonic warriors to continue his 500-year pursuit of what is rightfully his. Lots of explosions, guns, and destruction as ancient slams head-on into 21st-century military technology, and Ethan and Sarah try to find a way to stop Buraki and his army before he destroys the city.

"D-War" is a film that looks and sounds amazing, in theory, but the execution is so poor that you'll rightfully feel that you've been cheated by the time the credits roll. Make no mistake, Buraki and his minions look pretty cool and plenty menacing, and the destruction they bring about in their action sequences is nothing short of breathtaking. In this regard, Shim has surely done his job in presenting "D-War" as a no-holds-barred sci-fi/fantasy action epic.

On the other hand, the film's human players are drastically short-changed and given cheap, hokey dialogue and scenes that rarely connect. It seems that the only reason they're here is to give us something to root for, which is not in any real way genuine. "D-War" unfortunately comes off as something a lot closer to the poor American adaptation "Godzilla" (1998) than anything that is uniquely Korean. Another problem is that the story seems to take itself a little too seriously, with cheap humor that doesn't get anything greater from us than a weak little laugh. The acting and direction seem mediocre at best (so that you do feel a little sorry for the hokey performances of American heavyweight Robert Forster and up-and-coming Jason Behr), which is a real shame because Hyung-rae Shim is obviously a capable talent who knew what he wanted to do here and surely enough had the means to do it. His head seems full of ideas but the problem is with the execution of those ideas; maybe he was trying to do too much without really working out the material in greater detail. And the ending, a would-be "Raiders of the Lost Ark" special effects showdown, seems pretty cheap too.

I really wanted to like this movie, believe me, but "D-War" is a mediocre attempt at something that really had potential to be spectacular. But maybe it's because I'm an American. Maybe you'd have to be Korean to understand the mythical themes about that classic battle between good and evil. It's just too bad that the finished product of "D-War" appears to be like any other "B"-grade monster movie than the extraordinary idea that the director had in mind.

5/10


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