Yi ge ren de wu lin (original title)
Director: Teddy Chan
Writers: Teddy Chan (original story), Ho Leung Lau (original story)
Stars: Donnie Yen, Baoqiang Wang, Charlie Yeung
Plot: A martial arts instructor from the police force gets imprisoned after killing a man by accident. But when a vicious killer starts targeting martial arts masters, the instructor offers to help the police in return for his freedom.
Running Time: 1 hour 40 Minutes
IMDB Score: 6.5
Why I Watched It: I wanted to see this and for whatever reason I didn’t get around to it, it was on Netflix then it left and then I managed to see it on Amazon Prime.
Random Thoughts: So this is a foreign film and yes that means subtitles, it’s in Cantonese, luckily I don’t mind sub-titles.
I’m a fan of Donnie Yen but I don’t think he gets the love or attention he should in North America, he’s a great action star but also a solid actor.
What I liked: Flat out this is just a very well done action/martial arts movie. Really I don’t need to say more but I will. The set up is pretty good you have a man not only targeting but also killing Martial Art experts and he’s killing the best in each discipline, the film in a way reminding me of Seven, not as dark but the killer is kind of close. For me the reason this movie works is the villain cause we know he’ll end up going after Donnie Yen and we know he can hold his own so the bad guy has to not only be opposing but also a very good fighter and Baoqiane Wang does a great job, he’s crazy but he’s driven and he’s a great fighter.
The fighting is top notch and all of the fights have an intensity and a sense of urgency that a lot of action films lack. Donnie Yen not only anchors the film but also the fight scenes. Another cool thing about this movie is the closing credits, a lot of the actors even in small parts are legends or stars of martial arts films from the past, Yen does a nice job of making a current film but also to tip his hat to the past. There is a lot of respect given to Kung Fu here, they do a nice of job of making an entertaining film but also to take the art seriously.
This is a harder edge film than say a lot of other action films, this is serious and not played for fun, the action is hard but not over the top violent.
What I Didn’t Like: Some of the sub-plots were a little clunky and did kind of slow the film down and it does drag a wee bit. The romance part is very cliched and really adds nothing to the film.
Other than that not to much to complain about I do wish some of the earlier fights were longer, I wish we could have seen the other masters hold their own against Wang, hey I always want more action.
Final Thoughts: If you’re a martial arts fan and or a Donnie Yen fan give this a watch a very well done and performed Kung Fu action film.