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|Index||95 reviews in total|
I have no idea why this flick is getting such a bad rap by so many IMDb users (Some are saying it's his 'worst movie ever.' What?? Haven't any of you seen Cradle 2 The Grave?) My favorite criticism is that the plot is totally stupid, and just an excuse to hang all of the action sequences on. Duh! What the crap were you expecting from a Jet Li movie? Did you honestly believe that someone thought up the story, then just loaded it up with action? Of course not! Black Mask is awesome, wall-to-wall action throughout nearly it's entire running time. It's also deliciously gruesome, and we get plenty of severed limbs, decapitations, and creative ways of watching the bad guys (and quite a few innocent people, too!) get slaughtered. Most of Li's other martial arts films are nursery-school when compared to Black Mask; there is no holding back on the gratuitous violence, bloodshed, or action sequences whatsoever! And that made me a happy camper. Again: if you go into a Jet Li movie expecting magnificent dialog and an intriguing plot, you are going for the wrong reasons. Black Mask is probably my favorite of his movies (though, beware of the horrendous dubbing).
In Stand By Me, Vern and Teddy discuss who was tougher, Superman or Mighty
Mouse. My friends and I often discuss who would win a fight too.
we get absurd and compare guys like MacGyver and The Terminator or Rambo
Matrix. But now it seems that we discuss guys like Jackie Chan, Bruce Lee
and Jet Li. It is a pointless comparison seeing that Lee is dead, but it
a fun one. And if you go by what we have seen from Jet Li in Lethal 4 and
Black Mask, you have to at least say that he would match up well against
Chan. In this film he comes across as a martial arts God.
Black Mask is about a man that was created along with many other men, to be supreme fighting machines. Their only purpose is to win wars that other people lose. They are invincible in some ways. Now that is the premise for the film, but what that does is sets up all the amazingly choreographed fight scenes.
Jet Li is a marvel. He can do things with and to his body that no human being should be able to do. And that is what makes watching him so fun.
Besides the martial arts in the film, Black Mask is strong with humour and that is due to the chemistry that Jet has with his co-star, the police officer. They are great together. But to be honest. if anyone is reading this review, they want to know if the film is kick ass in the action department. And the answer to that is a resounding YES!!! Lots and lots of gory mindless action. You will love this film.
Anyone who had never seen anything like the fight scenes in The Matrix has
never seen this movie. The fight scenes were choreographed by action scene
psychopath Yuen Woo Ping, who also did the fights in The Matrix. And the
fight scenes are somethin.
Li plays a supersoldier who feels no pain, who now lives a life as a pacifist librarian (ya got me). When other evil supersoldiers begin killing off local drug lords to take over the drug trade, Li teams up with his cop buddy to help stop them.
There are some absolutely crazy things going on in this movie (one badguy gets his arm lopped off with a pane of glass and hardly notices). The fights scenes are filled with flying kicks and punches; the body count is way up there. Li has seldom been better, and he has surrounded himself with a bevy of beautiful female costars (Yip kicks some serious ass as a fellow supersoldier). Anthony Wong even makes a cameo as a drug lord (no suprises there; he makes a cameo in every HK movie). It's unfortunate they don't make action movies like this in the US; I wouldn't have to sit through all of these horrible dubbing jobs to see that action that I crave so much. Recommended.
This film appears to draw a borderline - on one side, those who love
it, on the other, those who find it unbearable.
To begin with, there is an awful lot of comedy in this film that many viewers are not "getting". Of course jet Li's Mask looks like Bruce Lee's Kato - he's supposed to, it's a joke. The guy who has a time-bomb sewn to his heart - outrageous? of course, it's a joke! Some readers will probably ask, if this film is supposed to be so funny, why all the excessive and gory violence? well, for one thing the tolerance for this level of violence is actually different, from culture to culture; and while Hong Kong audiences would recognize this violence is extreme, it's certainly only slightly more than average for a HK action film.
Also, Black Mask is really the kind of film that takes a genre's conventions and pushes them to extremes, simply because the conventions themselves are wholly unrealistic. After decades of watching people get shot without any noticeable open wounds, many people were horrified to see Bonnie and Clyde and the outlaws of the Wild Bunch spurting blood all over the place. But the fact is, when you're shot with rapid metal projectile, it's almost certain that blood will spurt, especially from an artery.
This film is a Chinese comic book movie. It is true that the Spiderman films never get this gory - but if they were faithful to reality, they would be! Well, despite its comic-book origins, this film is faithful to reality.
The only complaint I have is the flashy, over-stylized filming and editing. If the makers of this film had shot it with an eye to Hollywood-style nostalgia (as, e.g., The Rocketeer, or the recent Sky captain film), I doubt anyone would have found it offensive.
But as it stands, I still had a lotta fun watching this movie.
The story would never win awards, but that's not what it's about... the script was just entertaining and suspenseful enough to make room for the incredibly choreographed fight scenes. Who needs a story with fighting like that? Really, it's worth watching for that reason alone. IF you can handle the gore, of which there is a LOT... none of it done realistically enough to be tough to look at. I gave it a 7.
I really enjoyed this movie and it was a little difficult do that when your
brother is making stupid comments in it ever 30 seconds. But this movie I
enjoyed, mostly because I'm used to the usual HK action films. Most of the
films like this are don't watch it for the story line, watch it for the
mindless action. And mindless action is right. You get to see Jet Li Jump,
spin, kick, punch, shoot, make impossible jumps and dodge countless bullets.
It's true that this movie was released to a broader audience after Li was
in Lethal Weapon 4. That is one of the reasons the ratings on this movie
dropped. Most people were probably expecting to see a movie that was as
polished as a North American film. But you need to remember most HK film
budgets aren't nearly as high as a North American film, and the style in a
HK action film is usually very different usually requiring in wire work in a
lot of them. If you want to see a good action film you should see this just
try to ignore the dubbing.
My rating was an 8.
Horrible dubbing. Cheesy overworked plot. Story that's been done and done and done. Implausabilities abound. Plot holes large enough to drive a cliche through. But MAN those fight scenes were incredible! If you go in looking for a serious piece of cinema, you'll leave unhappy. If you can't laugh at how horribly some of the humor flops, you'll be disappointed. If you go in to see Jet Li kicking butt -- something he is incredible at -- you WILL be happy. Scale: 1 to 10. I give it a 7, simply because I said, "WOW!" so many times.
Jet Li behind a black mask? Does that work? I think it does. It's not
the greatest movie ever made, but it's a fun little action b-movie that
you get here.
The emphasis is clearly on the word "b-movie"! You can't watch this movie expecting a Hollywood Blockbuster. Or anything that would resemble a logical story. It is quite literally a "no-brainer". I have criticized movies for being no-brainers before. Why did I rate this one higher? Because I see it in the context. For example, Black Mask 2 is a "no-brainer" ... but there is nothing there that is entertaining. Here you have some jokes that work, but more importantly you have good choreographed action scenes. All of that is missing in the sequel (if you can call it that ...)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Jet Li brings us an unusual hero called Black Mask, a super soldier who
feels no pain and fights to stop crime.
It's about a man named Tsui Chik who is a former test subject for a secret super soldier program and the instructor for the 701 squad, a group of special commandos used by the government. When an operation with the 701 squad goes wrong, the government decides to abort the project and eliminate all test subjects and Tsui Chik escapes. Living a quiet life as a librarian, he discovers that his old squad is responsible for a series of violent crimes so he sets out to wipe them out by donning a Black Mask and Hat and goes by the name Black Mask.
The film pays homage to the green hornet and compares a lot to Kato from Black Mask's look with the domino mask and chauffeur's cap to the style clothing he wears throughout the movie.
Typical action sequences surround the film with excitement. Jet Li is amazing to look at from the action scenes involving amazing martial arts skills to the way the film depicts hong kong style cinema with an action packed story that keeps you entertained.
The story is adequate but unique, as with most hong kong cinema stories are, and is the kind of story only Asian cinema can really pull off. It fuses action, crime, revenge and a little romance as well. For the most part it's fun and does play out well until it falls on the revenge formula near the end.
Most Asian films are very good at choosing the right actors to play in their movies and this one has a really good cast. Jet Li as Black Mask. Ching Wan Lau as Inspecter "Rock" and Françoise Yip as Yeuk Laan.
Black Mask is a mix of great action, bloody violence and a good time for anyone who likes Jet Li and action. This film is not one to miss.
Black Mask is one of my personal favorites in Jet Li's filmography. This is easily , in my opinion his best gun fu film. Black Mask is very much in a sci fi /comic book style , but not in a PG13 Spider Man style . Black Mask is a brutal , ultraviolent wall to wall action classic that should please both fans of shoot em' up, detonation maximum bullet ballets as well as kung fu / martial arts fans. With Yuen Woo Ping choreographing the action and Jet Li as the lead , the fights /action are as good as it gets. There is enough blood and gore to satisfy the most bloodthirsty of action fans as well as some of the finest choreographed wire fu insanity of the period . Black Mask is for me a perfect blend of both styles of HK action . Also, a good job from the cast which has Lau Ching Wan and a cameo from Anthony Wong. The subtitled HK version don't look as good as the US version , but plays much better as a film without lousy English overdubbing and record scratching.
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