Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Chinese Ghost Story 2011 Quick review

Chinese Ghost Story (2011) Quick Wuxia film review

One of my all time favorite movies and a huge influence on my first novel Hunting the Moon Tribe was the 1986 classic Hong Kong movie A Chinese Ghost Story. Produced by Tsui Hark and directed by my favorite kung fu director Ching Siu Tung the 1986 movie can mostly be compared in tone to Evil Dead 2 with its blend of horror, humor and fantasy. It is like no other movie, when you consider it has 1,000 year tree demons, sword fights in hell and a rapping Taoist monk. The two sequels are good, but nothing compared to the first film which I have probably watched 20 times and never get sick of.

So I had mixed feelings on the idea of a remake. On one hand it was to be directed by Wilson Yip who has made a few cool movies with Donnie Yen (Ip Man 1 &2,Flashpoint), and as great as the first one was, it lacked modern special effects. So I kinda liked the idea of updated effects.

So last night I finally watched the remake. So What did I think? Well if you have never seen either film I would say go back to the 1986 film first. It is better. There were plenty of things that the filmmakers did right. For one they used the same theme song, that gave me a big smile and made me feel like I was watching Chinese Ghost Story, if I was in a theater I would have clapped. Other cool scenes included a demon hunter John Woo style fighting with crossbows, and a weird scene where the demon hunter is floating on an ocean of leaves.

As good as the first film? Not close, but better than most Hollywood remakes.

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