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Shaolin Soccer (2001)
"Siu lam juk kau" (original title)

PG  |   |  Action, Comedy, Sport  |  12 July 2001 (Hong Kong)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 53,020 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 242 user | 246 critic | 24 from Metacritic.com

A young Shaolin follower reunites with his discouraged brothers to form a soccer team using their martial art skills to their advantage.



, (as Tsang Kan Cheong) , 4 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mui (as Zhou Wei)
Man Tat Ng ...
Golden Leg Fung (as Ng Mang Tat)
Yin Tse ...
Team Evil Coach Hung (as Patrick Tse Yin)
Cecilia Cheung ...
Team Dragon Player #7
Team Dragon Player #11
Vincent Kok ...
Team Puma Leader
Hui Li ...
Banana Peel Girl
Yat-Fei Wong ...
Iron Shirt (Third Brother)
Chi Chung Lam ...
Light Weight Vest (Small Brother)
Lightning Hands (Fourth Brother)
Mei Lin Mo ...
Ming Ming Zhang ...
Little Hung
Pu Ye Dong ...
Little Fung


After a fateful mistake costing his career, an ex-soccer player bum meets a shaolin kung fu student trying to spread the word of kung fu. The ex-soccer player helps reconcile with his five brothers, and teaches them soccer, adding shaolin kung fu as a twist. Written by ravedragon

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Kick some grass! See more »


Action | Comedy | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for martial arts action and some thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:







Release Date:

12 July 2001 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Shaolin Soccer  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,352,456 (France) (23 August 2002)


$488,872 (USA) (20 August 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (DVD) | (original U.S. theatrical release)

Sound Mix:

| (US version)| (US version)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film contains a vast amount of Puma product placement - almost every football boot in the film is Puma; almost all of the team shirts (other than Team Shaolin) are Puma; along with numerous Puma ads and even a football transforming into a flaming Puma when kicked at speed. See more »


Sing: I'm not here to fight, I'm here to play soccer!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Outtakes are shown before the credits. See more »


Referenced in Café. Waiting. Love (2014) See more »


Nan er zhi
(Mens' Courage)
Composed by Lowell Lo
Lyrics by Andy Lau
Performed by Andy Lau
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

I hate sports movies.
9 February 2005 | by (Bookseller of the Blue Ridge) – See all my reviews

What a wonderful sports film. STOP, read that line one more time. I ask you to do this because you will probably never see this again.

This was a sports film, for me to say that it wasn't would be a bold faced lie. This had all the characteristics of the modern Hollywood sports film, but what made it stand out and enjoyable is that it did not take itself seriously … AND … it had some amazing CGI action sequences. I recently watched a film called Equilibrium where it was mentioned that it could rival the popularity of The Matrix, well I would have to say that perhaps this film, Siu lam juk kau, would probably do more in toppling the king of bullet-time cinematography than Equilibrium would. I was impressed from the beginning till the end of this movie. The characters were all animated and individual in their own way. There was time used to set them up and learn about each of them. This wasn't one of those films where you spent most of your time with one of the characters then never really got to know the rest of them … you knew them all and couldn't wait to see what they were going to bring to the table next. Hong Kong has crafted a spectacular film here. They have taken the popularity of the bullet-time effect and applied it to a genre that definitely needed a face-lift. I am surprised that America wasn't the first to do this, but we are a nation that loves the standard sports film, so why change what we love. PWFSSSST. We are so lazy sometimes.

Siu lam juk kau tells a spectacular story coupled with some amazing graphics to create a story about love, teamwork, and superpowers. I also enjoyed the fact that this film also tried to say that kung-fu is not an old topic, that it can and should still be used in society today. When we think of the martial arts films (and physical aspect), we see them as a very old and dated genre. Well, let me be the first to say that they are coming back, and coming back with a vengeance. I enjoyed the fact that this was a revenge film. So many of our kung-fu films are revenge films, I was happy to see that this one was not far off. This film used techniques that I have not seen used in any other films. They took the old, skillful ways of the dated kung-fu film, added the work of bullet-time, and added the sports flare to it to create Siu lam juk kau. It had us laughing, it kept us based in reality, and it focused my attention to the screen for the entire film (a task that no other sports film has been able to do). I think that by having your star also direct it (directed and starred Stephen Chow) it builds upon a sense of comfortability with the story. Chow is a master of slapstick, yet seldom overdoes the silliness, choosing carefully timed gags and meticulously mounted visual construction over slapdash comedy. The film is also no stranger to the bizarre, with Chow's multiple homages to Steven Spielberg, and a weird egg gag that I'm honestly shocked still remains the American cut of the picture.

Overall, Siu lam juk kau is a amazing combination of comedy, action, romance, and dazzling soccer footage, forming an irresistible package to those looking for something they haven't seen before. We see that it is a personal story that everyone is having fun being a part of. That also helped this film … the characters really wanted to be in this film and it shined like the North Star through our screen. The dubbing (which seemed off a couple times) only added delight to this film. Chow's Siu lam juk kau, is and will always be breathtaking.

Grade: ***** out of *****

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