The sheer fun of action movies that utterly delight in how much they can astonish an audience is an attribute that cannot be mistaken when it’s prominent.
When it comes to director Le-Van Kiet’s “The Princess”, it isn’t just prominent, it’s on fire! In a remarkable action movie turn by Joey King, “The Princess” is the most jam-packed martial arts bonanza that a medieval set and timeframe in the Middle Ages can summon up…
Calling it merely ‘a blast’ undersells the thunderously good time that “The Princess” amply provides here which you can see NOW on Hulu!
Joey King portrays the titular princess heroine of “The Princess”, with Dominic Cooper playing her power-hungry suitor Julius.
Veronica Ngo plays the Princess’ combat trainer Linh, with her mother and father, the King and Queen, played by Ed Stoppard and Alex Reid.
The Princess’ young sister Violet is played by Karyn Rose Downey, with Allegra du Toit portraying the Princess as a child. Additionally, Olga Kurylenko plays Julius’ whip-cracking villainous associate, Moira.
In a medieval kingdom, the King and Queen who rule over it with kindness seek to wed their elder daughter to Julius, a diplomat’s son with a much greater bloodlust and urge to go to war than the ruling family.
After the Princess balks at her betrothed marriage, Julius and his forces seize the castle, capturing the King, Queen, and their youngest daughter Violet. They proceed to chain the Princess in the highest tower as preparations are made for a second attempt to wed her to Julius.
Little do Julius and his foot soldier know that not only is the Princess prepared to strongly defy her forced marriage, but she has the fighting skills to do so, having been secretly trained growing up by the niece of one of the King’s associates, Linh.
Despite being chained, the Princess wastes no time in breaking free and fighting her way to the bottom of the tower to save her family and the kingdom.
“The Princess” is Action-Packed!
“The Princess”, in its lean 94-minute runtime, is not only a very energetic contender for 2022’s best action movie, it’s also all but certain to win the crown of its most thoroughly action-packed.
“The Princess” gets started with its butt-kicking mandate mere minutes into its opening, stopping for a mug of ale (in one case, literally) as a formality at most.
Comparisons to “The Raid” not Surprising…
You’re bound to see comparisons to “The Raid” all over the place in reactions and reviews to “The Princess”, and they couldn’t be more apt.
Spiraling to the ground floor of the castle, “The Princess” is a twister of punching, kicking, and sword-slashing of regal energy.
“The Princess” also keeps everything quite varied, with armored opponents, swarms of Julius’ henchmen, double-team battles, and one-shot fights all coming up to bat, one after another, each more bruisingly electrifying than the last.
Joey King: Best New Action Star of 2022?
It’s oddly fitting that Joey King and Veronica Ngo should both feature in “The Princess”. Like Ngo’s breakout martial arts role in “The Rebel”, Joey King walks away with the throne of Best New Action Star of the year with her grippy portrayal of the never-named Princess.
The blood, sweat, and tears that emanate from every moment of her perpetual fight scenes is everything action lovers simply live for.
Veronica Ngo & Joey King: A Tandem Marvel of Blades and Fists
Veronica Ngo just adds more of that energy to “The Princess” as Linh, and while her fight scenes are mostly set in the movie’s final third, she and King together are a marvel of blades and fists in tandem with one another.
The Princess also finds the perfect foil in Moira’s whip combat, which plays out in both visceral and bloody ways in her service to Julius and battle with The Princess.
In her ambition to become a knight, the Princess more than earns that honor not simply for herself, but for the crazily action-packed medieval smackdown / slashdown of a movie that she’s the heroine of.
“The Princess” is an action movie that’s simply exuberantly keen to show off everything they can do, with no muscles left to flex by the end.
Joey King’s debut as an action heroine is arguably the best for a newbie martial artist in years, with the movie giving viewers nothing but crazy amounts of action-packed fun with her, Veronica Ngo, Olga Kurylenko, and a ton of stunt people more than happy to plummet from one floor of the tower to another.
“The Raid’ in a medieval castle” might not have been something many viewers were expecting, but that’s what you’re getting served up admirably with the arrival of “The Princess”!
- “I’m the Princess!” – The Princess (when an opponent asks who she is.)
- “A nightmare. You’ll learn to sleep with one eye open, to never turn your back. I’ll be in heaven, just thinking, day and night, of ways to kill you. And you’ll be in hell, wondering when it’s coming. And you know that it will be coming, because you know that I’ll never rest, never idle, never stop until I’m standing above your corpse holding in my delicate, manicured hands your still beating heart.” – The Princess (describing what life will be like for Julius if he forces her into marriage.)
- Joey King also executive produced “The Princess”, and largely performed her own stunts.
- Kefi Abrikh served as the movie’s fight coordinator. He previously worked in the same role with director Le Van Kiet and Veronica Ngo on 2019’s “Furie”, while his other credits include “District 13: Ultimatum”, “Lucy”, “Mission: Impossible – Fallout”, and “Kung Fu Zhora”.
- Clayton Barber served as the movie’s stunt coordinator. His other credits include “Never Back Down 2: The Beatdown” “Man of Steel”, “Creed” “John Wick: Chapter 2”, “Black Panther”, and “Iron Fist” season 2, along with the upcoming “Creed III”.