Critic Reviews



Based on 10 critic reviews provided by
If the movie feels old-school (with new-school production values), consider its pedigree. It's no wonder: Shaolin is a reimagining of the 1982 "Shaolin Temple," in which Jet Li made his debut.
Director Benny Chan has fashioned a visually sumptuous period wushu film with a strikingly contemplative and pacifist bent.
Fists fly furiously and much blood is spilled; there's a sacrifice via sword that's both cringe-inducing and cheerworthy. Even special guest star Jackie Chan gets in on the fun with a hilarious bit of food-jitsu. It's almost enough to make you forget that this entertainingly hollow film is populated entirely with toy soldiers.
Jackie Chan's cameo as a monastery cook is a tiny joy. To see Chan use his once-great physical skill on a hunk of bread dough is to see a giant work in miniature.
Boxoffice Magazine
Shaolin is simultaneously regal and stilted, stirring and sluggish.
Slant Magazine
Only Jackie Chan, in a comedic supporting role as a Zen-trained cook who applies his culinary techniques on the battlefield (he "stir-fries" one enemy in a giant pot and "kneads" another like dough), provides any measure of relief.
Directed with feeling for its richly layered protagonists, the film is elevated by its emotional complexity but simultaneously dragged down by the relative shortage of propulsive, hardcore action.
Well-mounted Chinese-Hong Kong martial-arts co-production Shaolin elevates enlightenment above brute strength, but weak helming undercuts the pic's punch.
This new movie features stylishly filmed and choreographed battles. But in between the set pieces is a lot of sentimental blather that slows down the film. More action, less talk should be the order of the day, but it isn't.
Village Voice
This crude, overlong chunk of kung-fu kitsch lays its scene in a 1920s Republican China, torn by internecine fighting and weighed down by drably expensive production design.

More Critic Reviews

See all external reviews for San siu lam zi (2011) »

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Reviews | User Ratings | External Reviews