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The Storm Warriors (2009)

Fung wan II (original title)
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Wind and Cloud find themselves up against a ruthless Japanese warlord intent on invading China.

Writer:

Wing-Shing Ma (story)
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1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Aaron Kwok ... Cloud
Ekin Cheng ... Wind
Kenny Ho ... Nameless
Nicholas Tse ... Heart
Charlene Choi ... Second Dream
Simon Yam ... Lord Godless
Suet Lam ... Piggy King
Patrick Tam ... Emperor
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Danny Arroyo ... Cloud (voice)
Anson Leung ... Earth
Candy Liu Candy Liu ... Princess
Byron Pang Byron Pang ... Sky
Yan Tang ... Chu Chu
Todd Eric Valcourt ... Wind (voice)
Tak-Bun Wong ... Lord Wicked
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Storyline

Based on the comic book series "Fung Wan" and directed by The Pang Brothers comes the incredible story of two friends, Wind and Cloud, who find themselves up against a very powerful warlord intending to invade their country. In order to protect their land these two friends seek the help of the all-powerful master. Through extensive training Wind and Cloud expose themselves to the "evil" ways to increase their powers of element. When the intensive battle begins their friendship will be tested when one finds it hard to be righteous and easy to be evil. Written by Elizabeth, Marketing Manager

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sequences of stylized martial arts violence throughout | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Hong Kong

Language:

Cantonese | English

Release Date:

17 December 2009 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

The Storm Warriors See more »

Filming Locations:

Thailand

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Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX | DTS-ES

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Both Ekin Cheng and Kenny Ho have played Hero Hua, the protagonist of another Ma Wing-shing comic "Chinese Hero: Tales of the Blood Sword". Cheng starred in the 1999 film while Kenny Ho played the character in the 1990 television series. See more »

Goofs

There was no indication that Lord Wicked has battled Lord Godless nor that they have ever met before but he was able to advise Cloud of Lord Godless' weakness. See more »

Connections

Follows The Storm Riders (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Storm Warriors-- THE "Magic-(Kung)Fu" Comic-Book Movie
9 December 2009 | by dont_b_so_BBCSee all my reviews

Green-screened movies and manga/ anime (graphic-novel/ cartoon) adaptations are a dime a dozen these days-- so what makes "Storm Warriors" (based on a Hong Kong "wuxia" comic series) any different? Well, unlike Hollywood movie adaptations which tend to tone/ dumb things down for wider/ mainstream appeal, or Japan movie adaptations which try to stuff all the original story/ characters in, Hong Kong movie adaptations are generally about entertaining their fan-base-- even at the risk of becoming self-referential/ indulgent "B"-movies.

And the "magic-(kung)fu" style/ stance aptly known as "Mastery of Ten Thousand Swords" shows up right at the beginning, as if Hong Kong/Chinese cinema is staking its claim as the rightful home of "magic-(kung)fu" movies. Jedi Knights can only ape, but never muster up, THIS much style.

That's right, "Storm Warriors" is an unabashed attempt at THE "magic-(kung)fu" comic-book movie-- complete with comically symbolic names and philosophical kungfu-babble, as well as the requisite series of achingly slow 2-minute "power-ups/ stand-offs" followed by dizzyingly fast 2-second "fights/ contacts", etc.. By starting right at the END of the story, "Storm Warriors" shrewdly (shamelessly?) avoids any semblance of story-telling or scale... in favor of merely showcasing the "end-game" battles that are being fought-- with NO explanations for the uninitiated.

And unlike its prequel "Storm Riders", which tried semi-successfully to make a "realistic/ conventional" movie based on an earlier story-arc in the same Hong Kong comic series, this movie simply aims to realize the experience of reading/ re-imagining its "wuxia" battles-- with frequent "fades-to-black", extreme close-ups and closely-edited montages... and once I realized/ accepted I was watching a manga/ comic-in-motion, I actually had fun "interpreting/ analyzing" each "panel".

In other words, just go and do your own research if you didn't "get it"... and if you didn't have fun watching it, you're obviously not its target audience-- "wuxia" fans waiting to see the next stage in the cinematic realization of "magic-(kung)fu" battles (the opening "Mastery of Ten Thousand Swords" is now CANON in "wuxia"-fantasy cinema). Never mind if you missed (like I did) the "magic-(kung)fu" movie craze started by the "Buddha Palm" in the 1960s (filmed in black-and-white) or the "Warriors of Zu Mountain" in the 1980s (filmed with wire-fu)-- thanks to the advances in green-screen and CGI technology, "Storm Warriors" is able to show you some of the wild "magic-(kung)fu" battles envisioned by generations of "wuxia"novelists/artists with all their crazy chi/energy.

Of course, you can fault the directors/ writers for the lack of story/ character development-- or just blame it on comic fans who already know the story/ characters (the comic series ended ages ago), as well as "wuxia" genre fans who will able to figure it out (most of it "wuxia" clichés), or even the investors who wouldn't put up the money for a 9-hour trilogy upfront.... But you can certainly see where most of the money went-- though I wished more of it was spent fleshing out the first half of the movie, instead of endlessly "leveling-up" in the second (where budget limitations really show).

Personally, I admire the producers'/ directors' guts (foolhardiness?) in splurging on the EFFECTS and scrimping on the script (instead of the other way round like most films with a tight budget). Eg. The lighting/ texture of CGI-background/effects matches with the live-action actors so well/ evenly that it usually does NOT distract/ detract from the movie (always the highest compliment for CGI); and the choice/ ability to light/ color the film with "natural/ ambient" light is a welcomed sight for sore eyes strained by heavily color-corrected sci-fi/ fantasy movies (hiding their CGI in "soft sepia", "cool blue", etc.)-- so "Storm Warriors" aimed rather low, and mostly hit its mark.

In short, this movie is nothing if not "pulp/cult", and a "guilty pleasure" at that too-- the story/ characters may not resonate, but the visuals can certainly be relished... depending on how you liked them. For me, there were at least 2 things (no, not the two male leads) that they got right: "Mastery of Ten Thousand Swords" at the very beginning, and "Capricious Dance of the Demons" at the very end-- but there was really a lot of "filler" to get through...


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