Hirokin did have a good idea going for it, unfortunately it now joins the already quite big pile of movies that badly executed their good ideas. The best thing about it is some exotic scenery, but that’s it. And even then you can’t really enjoy it because the camera work and editing is so lazy and amateurish. In this basic recycled plot, the writer/director sprinkles in some other things that have no baring on the story and end up not being important. for example, a hovercraft that looks like Jabba’s barge; An implied love triangle involving Yoda’s daughter; two Irish idiots for comic relief and a half hour of Discovery Chanel nature shots. There are blatant ripoffs throughout the movie. The Irish idiots are lifted from Hidden Fortress; They took Jedi robes and gave them unhemmed edges; the ending is from Gladiator, complete with a grassy field vision and to top it all off, a Black Obi Wan Kenobi that had nothing to do with the plot.
The story didn’t really captivate me either; it’s full of dull and lifeless characters, going through the motions of some drama and plot that I really couldn’t care about. The movie overall tried to hard to resemble films like John Carter and Prince of Persia, but both are miles better. I know the film is low-budget so I can’t fault them for that but alignment should be simple enough and free of charge. I get the feeling the author of this scenario doesn’t speak English as his first language, or even broken English for that matter. The entire film is riddled with moonspeak. And everybody gets to become samurai in the end. Which is brilliant. Hirokin even has a signature move – he takes his pitiful blade, holds it like a throwing spear and then he throws it, impales the target instantly, and then snaps the blade black into his girly hands.
If you have a lot of time on your hands and you don’t know how to spend it, than go and take a walk in the park as it would be far more entertaining than seeing this movie. Most of the swordsmanship in the film were from Kendo, not Kenjutsu. Second, all CGI were obvious and some were even incomplete. There was even a shot of a floating ship where the top was not aligned with the screen’s edge. There is nothing interesting or likable about the characters here, they are little more than severely underwritten archetypes, especially the villains that are among the most laughable of any movie. The acting is terrible especially the bland and wholly unheroic lead(he has the looks but not the acting chops), even Julian Sands, most likely the most well-known actor in the cast, manages to give a flat and really quite insipid performance.
When you think about it like this, Hirokin is an achievement. An independent sci-fi action film is unheard of and extremely ambitious these days. Too bad, this low budget sci-fi film is cheesy but entertaining for anyone that enjoys sci-fi B movies. It’s basically a SYFY channel quality film, even though I’m pretty sure it’s never actually aired on the SYFY channel. The writer clearly mixed Dune and Star Wars, however this is not close to as good as either! My biggest problem is that there isn’t a single impressive fight sequence. The film acts like an action sci-fi, but it never delivers a single impressive action sequence.