Top critical review
2 people found this helpful
on 12 February 2012
From the cover and description I figured that K-20 would be an exciting, swashbuckling, steampunk, alternate-history high adventure. I thought it would be a cross between Arsene Lupin and The Shadow. But it's not. It's long and quite laborious, with not much pay-off.
Set in a mid-20th century Japan where WWII never happened and where social classes are not allowed to inter-marry, K-20 is a thief and a master of disguise (think of the Mission: Impossible with the rubber masks) who steals inventions and artifacts (though we never actually see much of this happening). I figured he'd be the hero but he's really the antagonist. He sets up Endo, a humble circus performer, to take the blame for his crimes and disappear. But Endo and his fellow peasants are not about to just accept this injustice.
With such an expansive premise, K-20 does little with it's potential. At 137 minutes I've seen film almost half it's length with more more action. It's not much of a caper, it's not much of an adventure. This should have/could have been an epic, but it just ain't. The backdrop is lovely when they make the effort, but more often than not the sets are too low-key and in other wider shots they forgot to hide the fact that it's clearly shot in the present day. The subtitle translations are sometimes inconsistent too.
The Blu Ray looks good in 2.40:1 1080p with DTS HD-MA sound. A small amount of extras are included.