The Admiral: Roaring Currents was first brought to my attention by a follower of my Facebook page. I mentioned how well done The Pirates was (I should review this movie, too) and it was strongly recommended to me.
And after watching The Admiral, I can see why.
The film revolves around the Battle of Myeongnyang in 1597, during the Joseon Dynasty. Admiral Yi Sun-sin (who was almost put to death but was reinstated) led the only 12 ships remaining in his command to against an invading Japanese fleet numbering above 300 vessels.
So it’s like the East’s version of the 300 Spartans… but on the high seas… and a bit better.
There’s plenty of action in this movie and we get a nice look at the ships, weapons and armor of the time. I don’t know much (see: know nothing) about the Battle of Myeongnyang or 16th Century Korean navy to know how close the movie is to actual history, but I will say that this rendition of what transpired is stellar. Action filled and emotionally stirring, it’s impossible not to root for Admiral Yi and his dwindling crew. We also get a nice glimpse of Yi Sun-sin’s brilliance in naval tactics and using the constantly changing tides to his advantage and as a numbers equalizer. The movie’s score is also top notch and I’m about to fire up iTunes to see if I can buy it.
Between The Admiral: Roaring Currents and The Pirates, South Korea is pumping out some of the best sea adventure films in a good long while. The characters are rich and relatable, the action is well choreographed and not overdone or over the top, and the plot lines truly captivating.
I highly, highly recommend The Admiral: Roaring Currents to anyone who enjoys sea adventures and/or Asian historical fiction. Currently, the movie is on Netflix but you can also pick the movie up on BluRay & DVD.