When a Japanese Samurai fails his master, he is stripped of his title and sent off to do work as a hired gun called a Ronin. In other words, they are outcast hitmen. This brings us to the cast of this 1998 film directed by John Frankenheimer which is being released for the first time on Blu-Ray.
“Ronin” features Deidre (Natascha McElhone), who assembles a group of four specialist to track down a mysterious case. She along with her boss, are willing to pay these four menSam (Robert De Niro), Vincent (Jean Reno), Gregor (Stellan Skarsgård), and Spence (Sean Bean)hundreds of thousands of dollars to ensure the case doesn’t wind up in the hands of the Russians.
The plot takes you on many turns when a member of the team steals the case for his own financial gain and the other three are left to stop him. More plot twists occur in the form of double crossing, and at one point you need a score card to see who is working for who. But the glory of “Ronin” hangs in its car chases. There are two extended chases, with cars speeding through the narrow streets of Paris past historic, centuries-old buildings and waterways, and it never ends well for someone. There are a lot of big gun fights to add to the action, but by the end of the two hours you wonder if it was all worth it.
This Blu-Ray version of “Ronin” also features audio commentary by director John Frankenheimer; brand new video interview with director of photography Robert Fraisse; Paul Joyce documentary on Robert De Niro; Ronin: Filming in the Fast Lane, an archival behind-the-scenes featurette; “Through the Lens,” an archival interview with Robert Fraisse; “The Driving of Ronin,” an archival featurette on the film’s legendary car stunts; “Natascha McElhone: An Actor’s Process,” an archival interview with the actress; Composing the “Ronin” score, an archival interview with composer Elia Cmiral; “In the Ronin Cutting Room,” an archival interview with editor Tony Gibbs; Venice Film Festival interviews with Robert De Niro, Jean Reno and Natascha McElhone; an alternate ending; and much more.