Official Description: Young prince Zhao and his sister Lian find themselves on the run from their father’s forces when their father, the king, is murdered by their older brother, Shing. They hire the reluctant aid of opium-addicted Jacob (Hayden Christensen), a war-weary Crusader who quickly finds himself bonding with the pair. Jacob must overcome his own personal demons and seek the assistance of his mentor, Gallain (Nicolas Cage), who is now a bandit leader known throughout China as The White Ghost. Reunited, the pair must overcome the sadistic Shing and his forces long enough to ensure that Zhao returns to his rightful place on the throne. (source: Wikipedia)
Unofficial Description: The Great White Savior rides again…
Look – first off, I feel bad for Hayden. Like, really, seriously bad for him. I think Star Wars kinda screwed him. He hasn’t had a great turn as an actor since, and this movie is proof of that in my mind. He gets pigeonholed into bad movies. I just don’t like the whole story of the white guy saves the day and I admit that.
There were some decent performances in this film – FROM THE NON-WHITE ACTORS – and I did watch it through to the end – but there was no need to tell this story the way they did. Hayden is a crusader who, tired of war, goes east. Ok. He ends up in China (I believe it’s supposed to be China) where he gets hooked on opium and hangs out in bars. The prince and princess, on the run, are saved by him and he agrees to help them. Kinda saw this story a million times before… It was a joint production with the US, Canada and China – I’m shocked they didn’t finesse the script a little, find Chinese actors to play the grizzled old mentor and the young, burned out warrior, and run with that.
And Nicolas Cage. Holy crap! What happened to you, Nick? Yikes! He has a British accent in this film – I don’t know why! And it’s a horrible accent!