Monday, August 12, 2013

Wuxia Film Review: Donnie Yen in Dragon (Wuxia)

I am a huge Donnie Yen fan so I wanted to see this as soon as I read about it. I am also a fan of Director Peter Chan's films most of all the gritty War drama based on the Three Kingdoms Warlords. This film a tribute to the One-Armed Swordsman, but is not a reboot or remake. The plot is actually similar to the Cronenberg film "A History of Violence." A connection I didn't see until someone pointed it out to me later. This makes this feel like an odd Kungfu movie that subverts the typical plot.

Donnie Yen is fantastic in the film as the lead but also as the action director who maximizes the short but powerful action scenes.

What makes the film awesome is the actors. All the performances are great. Jimmy Wang who in the late 60's played the one-armed swordsman is fantastic as the leader of the notorious 72 demons gang. Donnie Yen shows range, even if his comedic touches are a bit over the top early in the film. The show stealing is Japanese actor Takeshi Kaneshiro (House of Flying Daggers) as Xu Baijiu, a detective versed in physiology and acupuncture.

I loved this movie. kung fu movie fans can't go wrong!

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