The Legend of Silk Boy is a story about an ambitious little boy who stumbles into a magical world filled with fun, laughter, adventure, danger and the most amazing and colorful characters ... See full summary »
It's a heroic tale of three blood brothers and their struggle in the midst of war and political upheaval. It is based on "The Assassination of Ma," a Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) story about ... See full summary »
A hero cop accidentally leads his team into a trap from which he is the only survivor. Drowning his guilt in booze, he is eventually assigned a new younger partner who turns out to have his own secrets.
Thongs and Octopus accept a job from their landlord: Kidnap a baby. Soon, the baby awakens strong paternal feelings in the two crooks, leading to complications when it comes to handing him over to his possibly crazy gang boss grandfather.
Archeologist Jack keeps having reoccurring dreams of a past life, where he is the great General Meng Yi, whom is sworn to protect a Korean Princess named OK-soo. Jack decides to go investigate everything with his friend William.
China is plunged into strife as feuding warlords try to expand their power by warring over neighboring lands. Fuelled by his success on the battlefield, young and arrogant Hao Jie sneers at Shaolin's masters after killing a rival warlord on their temple grounds. But the glory comes before a fall. His own family is wiped out in an unexpected turn of events and Hao is forced to take refuge with the monks. As the civil unrest spreads and the people suffer, Hao and the Shaolin masters are forced to take a fiery stand against the evil warlords. They launch a daring plan of rescue and escape. Written by
Chinese compounded traditional martial arts is a fantastic and rather historic form of fighting, more commonly known as Wushu. This is a quite phenomenal mix of literally hundreds of forms and functional techniques in self defense. It of course is exceptionally popular in Asian cinema, and there is always that real sense of watching something unbelievably beautiful that has been passed down from generation to generation.
'Shaolin' brings much of the same fighting styles from previous martial arts films of the last decade. It's hard to compare it to anything I have seen in recent years. I found the movie to be quite enjoyable, if a rather typical ride for most fans of Chinese Cinema. There is the typical overuse of wired stunts, which gives that somewhat graceful 'float' effect on their jumps and movements. When it's just left to the choreography of Jackie Chan and Andy Lao it is actually quite breathtaking to watch the seemingly effortless way they move their bodies in a whirlwind of fists and kicks.
The story line is a rather serious topic for most films that come out of most successful communist country in the world. Most movies that come out of this part of the world are written, and re-written as to represent history in such a way that the government would approve of. This usually leads into a lot of fictionalization, just like any Hollywood drama. For example they leave out a lot of the history related to how many Shaolin Temples were destroyed over and over again in China's history, from the 16th century to even more modern times when rural warlords/generals set fire to monasteries throughout the country. The religious persecution during the communist cultural revolution still affects what can and cannot be shown in Chinese cinema, especially with religious themed films.
Anyways, it is a beautiful movie to watch, some excellent dramatic moments through the whole thing, and very well acted. Most definitely one of my favorite movies out of China in the last decade.
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