During the Japanese invasion of 1937, when a wealthy martial artist is forced to leave his home and work to support his family, he reluctantly agrees to train others in the art of Wing Chun for self-defense.
In postwar Hong Kong, legendary Wing Chun grandmaster Ip Man is reluctantly called into action once more, when what begin as simple challenges from rival kung fu styles soon draw him into ... See full summary »
Anthony Chau-Sang Wong,
A martial arts instructor from the police force gets imprisoned after killing a man by accident. But when a vicious killer starts targeting martial arts masters, the instructor offers to help the police in return for his freedom.
In 1935 in Foshan, south China, there are martial arts schools on every street corner. Ip Man is the undisputed martial arts champion, yet he has not devoted himself to teaching. Despite this, it seems that all the kung fu masters of the city are eager to fight him to improve their reputation. Written by
The idea of an Ip Man biopic originated in 1998 when Jeffrey Lau and Corey Yuen discussed the idea of making a film based on Bruce Lee's martial arts master. However, Paragon Films Ltd, the studio producing the proposed film, closed and the project was abandoned. Producer Raymond Bak-Ming Wong decided to develop his own Ip Man film with full consent from Ip's sons, and had filmmakers head to Foshan to research Ip's life. Ip Chun, Ip Man's eldest son, along with martial arts master Leo Au-yeung and several other Wing Chun practitioners served as technical consultants for the film. See more »
When Ip Man gives Yuan the box that his dead brother cherished and walks away (towards the camera), near the end of the shot, Yuan is seen to open the box. On the next cut-scene, the box is closed and he is seen to open it again. See more »
Captain Lei Chiu:
Why am I a traitor? Their deaths have got nothing to do with me. I'm just an interpreter. I need to scrape a living too!
Scrape a living? You watch your countrymen get beaten to death. Where's your dignity?
Captain Lei Chiu:
I don't have any. You do. You have lots of it. If you have the guts, go beat them! Beat as many as you can! I'm an interpreter, not a traitor...
[throws book to the ground and shouts in Japanese]
Captain Lei Chiu:
I'm a Chinese man!
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This is Donnie Yen's best acting piece for awhile now, and he still delivers the action sequences brilliantly. At 44 years of age, he looks so energetic, confident and charismatic. I believe the combination of Yen, Sammo Hung and Wilson Yip is the right choice for this particular film and fighting style. Wing Chun is best depicted without the flamboyant ballet of acrobatics often seen in other wushu films.
The movie doesn't dwell on historical accuracy, but rather use that settings to set the mood, deliver the message and simply tells you the life journey of a Grandmaster in an fun and entertaining way.
I remember that Richard Attenborough said (regarding Gandhi) that there was no way a director/movie maker could encompass and depict a person's life journey in only a 2 or 3-hour movie. But rather one should aim to emulate the spirit of that person, and the message/lesson of his story. I think this movie does that, with a quality production that raised the bar for period drama.
My rating is missing 1 point because I feel that there were plot devices that had been done-to-death before in other movies like: Fists of Fury, Fearless, Kill Bill, etc. However, Yip Man simply turns the notch to a higher sound-beating level.
Don't miss this on the big screen!
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