Set in China in the 1860's during the Taiping Rebellion, the story is based on the assassination of Ma Xinyi in 1870. Loyalist General Qingyun is the only survivor of a battle with ... See full summary »
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.
Set in late 19th century Canton this martial arts film depicts the stance taken by the legendary martial arts hero Wong Fei-Hung (1847-1924) against foreign forces' (English, French and ... See full summary »
Martial arts legend Huo Yuanjia became the most famous fighter in all of China at the turn of the 20th Century. Huo faced personal tragedy but ultimately fought his way out of darkness and into history, defining the true spirit of martial arts. His self-discovery, and the choices he made, inspired his nation. The son of a great fighter who did not wish for his child to follow in his footsteps, the bullied Huo Yuanjia resolves to teach himself how to fight - and win. Years of training enable him to ace match after match in his home region of Tianjin. But as his fame as a martial arts master grows, so does his pride. After an ill-advised fight leads to another master's death, members of Huo's family are slain in revenge. Grieving and ashamed, Huo wanders the country in shock. Near death, he is rescued by women from an idyllic village, and is offered simple kindness and generosity that help him heal and regain his equilibrium over a period of several years. Huo realizes that the future ...Written by
During filming when Nathan Jones was to pick up one of the extras and toss him to the floor, Jones got too into the spirit and the extra ended up going to the hospital with cracked ribs. See more »
When young Huo is practicing breaking the stone table there is a towel on the stone. After showing Jinsun, the towel is no longer there and Huo is hitting bare stone. See more »
Since there's no superiority or inferiority in Wushu, why still have competition?
Huo Yuan Jia:
I believe that there's no superiority or inferiority in Wushu. Just the distinction of practitioners with different levels of ability. Through the competition we can discover this and meet the true self. Because indeed the antagonist is namely ourself. Only through competition, can one recognise one's true self.
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Almost flawless, this new release improves on the style and genre in a significant way. The film is presented in a way that the viewer can appreciate it from several perspectives without heavily relying on the genre's standard formulas. We don't have to wade through the typical love triangle, the maniacal drug lord contracting a hit, or the beloved school's instructor being tortured and murdered before the ultimate revenge takes place. This film has a legitimate story line, skillfully presented in a clear and well edited manner.
Although the film was generally concerned with the development of a specific fighting style and philosophy, the audience is also treated to some authenticity of the then Chinese culture and the biography of a Chinese martial arts master. These features seem to give the production a much higher level of credibility than the average martial arts action movie.
Although we did experience some speed editing in fight scenes, it was done in such a way that it enhanced, rather than detracted, from the believability of the film. In "House of Flying Daggers", for example, the ballet and acrobatic like choreography of some of the fight scenes tended to undermine, rather than enhance. If there was any flaw in the fight scenes present, it was minor. This flaw may have been inescapable because of the inherent limitations of the style of the film itself. For example, trivial features such as disconnected striking combinations at the expense of speed editing, or the fact that the Japanese martial artist did not seem to be using a typical Japanese style of fighting. (It appeared to be a combination of Chinese and Korean oriented styles).
This film should, by all rights, reset the bar for the standards of martial arts films from now on. It was simply an outstanding film in every way.
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