Sunday, 7 August 2016

NZIFF: A Touch of Zen

A martial arts movie, why not? But from before they had Wire Fu. It's Xia nu.

A middle aged scholar gets caught up in events as a young woman moves into the ruins next door. It turns out, she's on the run after her high official father is killed, and she has two other generals to help her. The scholar won't leave her, and helps guide her to fighting off an entire army.

And then, the movie finishes with 30 minutes to go, and so they stuck on a sequel? It feels like that. The main character from the rest of the movie is gone, and a new villain is introduced, and other minor characters are back in a bigger role... it's only one scene, really, but it so feels like the sequel they didn't have other ideas for.

The main character is interesting, in that he isn't a fighter. And suddenly doesn't become one when he meets up with the actual fighters. I was a little expecting him to suddenly bust out moves, but nope, they keep him as the brains. And then the moment where he's confronted with the consequences of his actions...

The action sequences have lots of sword fighting, with occasional moments of people jumping about (usually shot from underneath so we only see flowing robes). There aren't any moments of standing on trees or moving with the wind or anything, just choreographed scenes and people being slapped about.

It's a decent movie, although it could do with a shorter than three hour running time.


No comments: