When I was in college in the 90s in Austin, Texas, I used to frequent a video store called "I Luv VIdeo." The locals all called it "I Heart Video," though, because of their distinctive sign. They had an amazing array of video tapes from all over the world, including a huge section of Asian cult hits. This is where I was introduced to John Woo and his movies like Hard Boiled, The Killer, and Bullet in the Head. The man is an amazing director, but since moving to Hollywood his work has been erratic. For every Mission: Impossible 2, there's a Windtalkers. For every Face/Off, there's a Paycheck.
Red Cliff is his first film since Paycheck, and it's a triumphant change for Woo as he moves into epic storytelling with a film so large it had to be split into two parts. Unfortunately, American audiences only received a cut-down version of both films, but Woo says that the full version will be coming to DVD soon. Right now, you can catch Red Cliff in theaters (it opened nationwide in the US on November 25) or On Demand in some markets, and I can testify that it is still a very satisfying film to watch. This is a huge movie with a ton of action, a great story, and it's good to see Woo returning to his Asian roots.
Read on for our full interview with John Woo just after the break.