Critic Reviews

77

Metascore

Based on 11 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
As with his previous film, director Chang nurses a compelling drama from a multilayered cultural reality, at once intimate and unfathomably large in implications.
80
The New York Times
Illustrating the film's rags-to-ring narrative with panoramic mountain views and compact shots of young bodies punching their way up the food chain, Mr. Sun straddles ancient and modern, tranquillity and turmoil, with equal sureness.
80
It's in between the lines that this movingly perceptive film scores a TKO.
80
As he did in his Three Gorges Dam documentary "Up the Yangtze," Chang examines how a particular strain of Western culture promises opportunity and prosperity for Chinese youth, even as it remains a continual source of intergenerational tension.
75
Chang doesn't pull his punches in this continuing look at a changing, out-of-control China.
75
Where Wiseman excelled in respecting the broad rhythms and pure storytelling of the ring, Chang's new documentary focuses on the stories of three boxers and weaves them into a compelling narrative that rivals anything Hollywood could script.
70
Village Voice
In the end, once we realize the title doesn't refer to these bantams' weight class but to their strength of heart, or something, the film feels blandly respectful and, oddly enough, apolitical.
70
With observant fluidity and that grounding point of Qi's desire to fight once again, Chang roots the film in personal, individual stories, keeping larger metaphors for the nation at the edges.
63
Although we never really get to know He or Miao, despite following them around vérité-style, director Yung Chang expertly captures the rays of Western culture bouncing off them.
63
Its brutality is unacceptable to Buddhism and Confucianism yet is increasingly appealing to young men (and women). And in a country that still professes socialism, it's fiercely individualistic. There are no collective work groups in the boxing ring.

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