6 items from 2013
Plot76% Acting79% Directing73% Music71%Some very interesting segments, both action-wise and story-wise.Never quite reaches its full potential. 75%Overall Score Reader Rating: (4 Votes)91%Horizontal Vs Vertical
“The Grandmaster” ( or “The Grandmasters” depending on your location ) is director Kar Wai Wong‘s first attempt at the kung-fu genre. His most notable successes have mostly been about the pain of lost romance ( “My Blueberry Nights“, “2046” and “In The Mood For Love” instantly come to mind ) so it’s no surprise that “Yi Dai Zong Shi” is a mixed bag of good and bad.
The story spans a few decades, starting in the early 1930′s. The premise of the movie is simple enough:Gong Yutian ( Qingxiang Wang ), a renowned master of China’s Southern and Northern styles of martial arts, comes to town to celebrate his eventual retirement. It’s at the Golden Pavilion, the number one brothel in the region, that he decides to make the big announcement. »
If you're not deep into martial arts cinema, you might have walked by the various movies titled "Ip Man" on the DVD shelves and mistaken them for Chinese or Japanese sci-fi or fantasy.
But the legendary Ip Man (also spelled Yip Man) is no invention of screenwriters. He's a famous figure in Chinese martial arts, guardian of several martial arts styles and the man who taught Bruce Lee his chops.
"The Grandmaster" is the latest version of his life to make it onto the screen, a regal, majestic and downright arty take on this teacher, champion and philosopher whose life spanned much of the 20th century. Co-writer/director Wong Kar Wai ("Chungking Express," "In the Mood for Love") goes for stately in this slow-moving action epic, sometimes at the expense of coherence and always in preference to pacing.
It's been six long years since a new Wong Kar-Wai movie graced cinema screens. The notoriously patient director behind "Chungking Express" and "In the Mood for Love" is back with "The Grandmaster," the biographical tale of Ip Man (also known as Yip Man), a true life historical figure (played in the film by the always brilliant Tony Leung) and martial arts wizard who would go on to train some kid called Bruce Lee. Harkening back to the director's earlier films, while adding a new level of expert technical precision, "The Grandmaster" is for any fan of kung fu or a devotee of Kar-Wai's work. It's in turns epic and gorgeous, a movie that demands to be seen, just for its visual opulence, and then discussed at length afterwards. We got a chance to do just that with Wong himself, who talked about the film's somewhat tortured production, why he decided to tell this story, »
- Drew Taylor
Review by Baron Fortnightly
The Legend is Born: Ip Man is a 2010 Hong Kong semi-biographical martial arts film about the early life of Ip Man (also spelled as Yip Man) and his journey to becoming a Wing Chun master whilst resisting the influence of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce, aims to dominate China and secure its vast raw resources. Ip is probably most famous in the West as the teacher of legendary martial arts actor Bruce Lee.
The film starts with a montage of images and banners from the early 1900s, of the increasingly nationalistic Chinese resisting pressure from Japan who in 1915 issued the Twenty-One Demands to extort political and commercial privilege from China after the First Sino-Japanese War. This won’t mean much to casual viewers, but even »
- Phil Wheat
The Grandmaster is the story of Wing Chun grandmaster Ip Man (or Yip Man), who also taught Bruce Lee. The film will follow Ip Man from his 1930s youth in Foshan to the events leading to his death, including flashbacks to his early training from the age of seven by master Chan Wah-Sun and his marriage Cheung Wing-sing. The film stars Tony Leung (Infernal Affairs) as the Grandmaster himself, with Ziyi Zhang (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) as Gong Er, a fighter and love interest of sorts.
The trailer does not give us much plot, but it does give us a great deal of beautiful slow motion and glimpses of elegant fight sequences. The film seems almost saturated by color. »
- Lauren Humphries-Brooks
Berlin — Martial arts epic "The Grandmaster" kicked off the Berlin Film Festival on Thursday, introducing an international audience to Yip Man, the man who mentored Bruce Lee and brought kung fu to the masses.
The movie by Wong Kar-wai is running out of competition because the director also heads this year's jury.
Shanghai-born Wong and his fellow jurors – among them American actor-director Tim Robbins – will have to choose from 19 movies competing for prizes at the 63rd Berlinale.
6 items from 2013
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