Archive for the Jacky Wu Jing Category

Review: Killzone 2 (SPL 2: A Time For Consequences) (2016)

Posted in Jacky Wu Jing, Max Zhang, Tony Jaa on July 19, 2016 by Michael S. Moore

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Starring Tony Jaa. Wu Jing, Zhang Jin (Max Zhang), Simon Yam, Ken Lo, Louis Koo

Fight Choreography by Chi Li Chung

Directed by Soi Cheang

The first Killzone was the first of what would be a run of films that would move Donnie Yen into his rightful place as one of the martial arts’ world’s legendary talents, going right up there with Jackie Chan, Jet Li and Sammo Hung. Now we come to Killzone 2, starring Wu Jing and Tony Jaa, both men needing hits after the nonsense that was Wolf Warrior and The Protector 2 respectively.

Wu Jing stars as Chi Kit Chang, and undercover cop who is close to busting a crime ring run by Mun-Gong Hung (Louis Koo, almost unrecognizable) a drug lord who is in need of a replacement heart, one he intends to collect from a compatible donor, his own brother. Chi Kit is betrayed, and tossed in a Thai prison, where he meets Chatchai (Jaa) a desperate man who needs to get a compatible liver for his young daughter, who will die soon unless she gets a transplant. He discovers that Chi Kit has such a liver. Of course complications occur when Hung’s right hand man Hung Ko (Zhang) is the warden of the prison that holds Chi Kit, and Chi Kits handler  Wah Kwok Chan (Yam) has his niece kidnapped by Hung. Can Chi Kit and Chatchai save both themselves and live long enough to save Chatchai’s daughter?

SPL 2

I was skeptical about how a Killzone without Donnie Yen and Sammo Hung would play out, especially with Simon Yam and Wu Jing, who were in the first film, now playing different characters in the second. I needn’t have worried. Killzone 2 is its own film, but toward the climax, it ramps up the tension, especially if you’ve seen the first film. Many story beats repeat themselves, but the ending of those…you’ll have to see for yourself! Wu Jing is pitiable as the Chi Kit, his situation becoming more and more deadly the further things go. The same holds true for Tony Jaa, who does a good job here, but really the star here is Max Zhang. Proving his star turn in Ip Man 3 was no fluke, he makes a formidable and ruthless prison warden, and his onscreen charisma is evident. I think we may have found the next big Chinese martial arts star! The directing by Soi Cheang is spot on, and he finds the humanity of each character in every frame, and the story maximizes the drama, which is well written here.

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The fights here are nothing short of brutal…but in the best way possible. It merges what we’ve seen in recent martial arts films with the Thai films of Tony Jaa, and it’s a marriage made in heaven (Tony is still missing Panna Rittikrai). The prison riot is one of the standouts, maybe even besting the prison fight in The Raid 2, but the final fight between Wu Jing and Tony Jaa versus Max Zhang is stunningly great, up there with the best of them. There is a little wirework, but its kept to a minimum.

Kiai-Kick’s Grade: 9

Killzone 2 is a great return to form for both Tony Jaa and Wu Jing, in a taunt thriller with great fight scenes and a showstopper of a final fight. (Max) Zhang Jin is a bonafide star, and this film cements it. A very worthy sequel to the original. 

The film is out TODAY from the good folks at Wellgousa!

 

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Killzone 2 aka SPL : A Time For Consequences Blu-Ray Giveaway!

Posted in Jacky Wu Jing, Tony Jaa, Uncategorized on June 29, 2016 by Michael S. Moore

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Huzzah! Time for another giveaway, and this one’s a doozy. I have 2 blu-ray copies of Killzone 2 starring Wu Jing,  Zhang Jin and Tony Jaa to give away thanks to the always good people at Wellgousa! So what do you have do to be the lucky few to get this? I’m in a charitable mood, so I’ll make this really, really easy. Since we are into the social media age, all you have to do is like the Kiai-Kick Facebook page AND follow me on Instagram to get into the drawing, and just to make this even easier, if you have already done so previously OR you are on one and not the other get on that and shoot me an email with your handle/name at kiaikicks@gmail.com. On July 15th I will gather all the names and choose the winners out of a hat. Winners to be announced the next day!  I will pick three names at random. But wait, I just said three, didn’t I?

The third person chosen, while they won’t win the Blu Ray for Killzone 2, they will win a nice blu ray of a previous release from Wellgousa. I’ll even let that person choose the film from a selection of titles!

Wu Jing. Tony Jaa. Free Blu-Ray. What’s not to like?

You can like the Facebook Page on the sidebar, and you can go to Instagram here.

(www.instagram.com/kenjisparks)

This contest is for North American-based folks only.

#wellgousa #killzone2

Review: Wolf Warrior (2015)

Posted in Jacky Wu Jing, Scott Adkins on August 31, 2015 by Michael S. Moore

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Starring Wu Jing, Scott Adkins, Nan Yu, Kevin Lee, Kyle Shapiro, Ni Dahong, Zhou Xiaoou

Fight Choreography by Wu Jing

Directed by Wu Jing

Wolf Warrior heralds the coming together of two martial arts titans: Wu Jing and Scott Adkins, both some of the best onscreen action stars today. But something went terribly wrong here, as the fight of century never actually happens, and, to put their fight best…

…dull.

Wolf Warrior stars Wu Jing as Leng Feng, an expert sniper in the Chinese army who has a tendency to do his own thing rather than take orders, and this comes to bear as he kills a known drug lord during a bust against orders. Rather than toss him in jail for subordination (they actually do) they transfer him to a special forces unit known as the Wolves. Meanwhile, the brother of said drug lord, Ming Deng, plots his revenge against Leng Feng, by hiring a group of mercenaries led by Tom Cat (Adkins) to ambush and kill Leng Feng, regardless of the fact that he’ll be surrounded by an entire military battalion. Of course Ming Deng has more to his plan that he doesn’t even reveal to Tom Cat, who strikes at Leng Feng during a Wolves training mission. What follows is a run-and-gun film as the Wolves take on the mercenaries and brings Leng Feng to a showdown with Tom Cat, but will their battle allow Ming Deng to escape China?

The story here runs at a fast clip, even with the subplot of Leng Deng’s father still coping with having to shoot his own squad mate during a battle long ago, and Leng Deng having to face the same scenario later in the film. Wu Jing is fun to watch here, playing his character not unlike Tom Cruise does in his Mission Impossible films, with a wink and a smile at the ready, which is actually refreshing from many characters he’s played in the past. The one thing that doesn’t work is his flirtations with his commanding officer Colonel Long Xiaoyun (Nan Yu). There isn’t much chemistry, and they spend much of the film separated from each other and only speak by radio. Scott Adkins is formidable as TomCat, but we never really get to know him beyond the fact that he’s a Really Bad Guy. The same goes for the entire mercenary crew.

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Wu Jing directs the film with confidence and energy, and it comes out in every scene..save one. There are some big set pieces and a lot going on, but at no point was I ever confused or disoriented in regards to where everyone is in relation to the action.

The action scenes are top notch, and play out in a classic action military film manner. There is the classic army type characters: the comedian, the lover, the Dad, the gruff but fair commanding officer. Many soldiers bite the dust, and there is suspense from sniper fire and redemptive scenes of sacrifice and honor from the Chinese soldiers. However, what we, the audience really want to see is Scott Adkins vs Wu Jing, as classic a scene as Bruce Vs. Chuck, Jackie Vs. Benny, Sammo Vs Billy, and so many more…

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What we got was as weak as fight as I’ve seen in quite a while. The fight never lasted very long, and what was there just didn’t gel. Both men looked great, but Adkins never cuts loose the way you know he can, and Wu Jing just doesn’t do much aside from a good kick here and there. The knife fight, which you hope brings memories of SPL, is short and not fill of the moves we would expect. And I can’t believe I’m saying this, but too much wirework where it wasn’t necessary.

So that brings me to a bit of a conundrum: do I judge the film as a whole or base my judgement solely on the great fight that was touted but failed to deliver?

I think in this case I have to find that middle ground, so…

Kiai-Kick’s Grade: 5

Wolf Warrior is not a bad film, but it doesn’t have the martial arts scenes you want, which to me is the price of admission, Wu Jing does have a good future as a film director, however.

The film will be released tomorrow from the good folks at Wellgousa! Let me know in the comments what you thought of the film. Do you agree with my assessment?

Is this the end of Wu Jing?!

Posted in Jacky Wu Jing with tags , on October 17, 2014 by Michael S. Moore

Wu Jing hospital

That is a vision we’ve seen from Jackie Chan more than once, but here we have Wu Jing, who suffered great injuries during the filming of SPL 2, with 2 broken legs and more. There is now speculation that this will end the 41-year-old’s career. With SPL 2 and Wolf Warrior coming up, there is a chance of that. Wolf War is his directorial debut, and hinted than his destiny may well be behind the camera. I’d hate to see Wu Jing hang it up, and that would leave Donnie Yen and (Now) Xing Yu as the only real martial arts stars in China.

I had always thought that Wu Jing would become a superstar once he found his Wong Fei Hung or Ip Man. He has the talent, but nowadays guys who would do things that garner injuries like Wu Jing above are a dying breed. Most Chinese action films now have stuntmen performing for the stars just like in Hollywood films. The days of Jackie Chan,  Sammo Hung and their crews are, sadly, over.

I hope Wu Jing will make more films, but wouldn’t blame him if he didn’t. How well Wolf Warrior does may go a long way toward his decision either way.

Thanks to Lee Golden with Film Combat Syndicate for the original story.

“There is a God!” Jacky Wu Jing vs. Scott Adkins in Wolf Warrior!

Posted in Jacky Wu Jing, Scott Adkins on July 25, 2014 by Michael S. Moore

Yes, Yes, Yes! The title comment comes from Kiai-Kick reader and friend Fernando Fury! Thanks to mega-awesome stuntman/action hero Mike Moeller for pointing me to this trailer! Jacky Wu Jing and Scott Adkins will have one of those fights of the ages! This is going to be something special! Check out the trailer below! I will now officially begin salivating for this one!

Per the good folks at Twitch.net Jacky Wu Jing is also directing this film, and so far it looks like he’s made a winner. He certainly got the right guy in Scott Adkins. Jacky seems to be taking control of his career now, and I think he’s about to make a similar jump that Donnie Yen made with SPL. Time will tell!

Review: Badges of Fury (2013)

Posted in Collin Chou, Corey Yuen, Fung Hak-On, Grace Huang, Jacky Wu Jing, Jet Li, Sui-Lung Leung with tags , , on January 7, 2014 by Michael S. Moore

Badges of Fury

Starring Jet Li, Wen Zhang, Michelle Chen, Lui Yan, Stephen Fung, Grace Huang, Fung Hak On, Wu Jing, Collin Chou, Leung Sui-Lung,

Fight Choreography by Corey Yuen

Directed by Wong Tsz Ming

Badges of Fury is perhaps the funniest comedy in Jet Li’s filmography, and for someone who doesn’t do it often, Jet really works here, but don’t be surprised that while his name is at the head of the credits, he is a supporting actor in this film, and Wen Zhang is the star. Of course, the first thing you have to do to best enjoy this film is to understand that the film is a comedy from the outset, a spoof of the kung-fu cop genre.

Around Hong Kong, a slew of actors, dancers, and the wealthy, all of them men, die of unknown circumstances, except that they were smiling at the time of death. Enter Huang Fei Hung (Li) an about to be retired cop, and Wang (Zhang) his overeager young partner are assigned to the case, even after botching up a major crime bust that could have net them a major gangster (great cameo appearance here by Collin Chou, acting like he stepped off the set of Flashpoint). What follows is wrong leads, bike chases, spoofs or mentions of films like Police Story 1, 2 and 3, and in one funny scene, a group of Interpol agents accuse Jet Li of BitTorrenting Fearless and the Flying Swords of Dragon Gate. Their leads take them to one woman who is connected to all of the murdered men, and of course things go sideways, including a fight between Jet Li and Wu Jing, and wait until you see exactly who Wu Jing is playing. I can’t reveal any more of the story without giving away any other jokes!

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The film is just out and out fun. Jet is really game here, playing the grizzled vet who is always mysteriously asking to go home early. Jet is energized, and looks great. Wen Zhang is able to carry the film, doing most of the funny stuff and is able to bounce jokes off of Jet well. Collin Chou and Wu Jing have “fighting” cameos, but perform well in their screen time. Leung Sui-Lung is great as well, but doesn’t really get his performance going until late, playing a character not unlike the one he played in Kung Fu Hustle. The film has scenes that reminded me of the whacked out stuff Stephen Fung did in his Tai Chi Zero series (Of course, he has a small part in this film), like the hilarious entrance of the femme fatale played to perfection by Lui Yan.

Badges of Fury Liu Yan

Corey Yuen choreographed the fights here, and did a great job. The fights were able to match the silliness of the rest of the film, but delivered some good kung fu fights. Jet versus Wu Jing was good, as was Jet vs. Collin Chou. Wen Zhang does a good job and gets the more “out there” fights, but does it well. The final fight between Jet Li and Leung Sui-Lung leaves all believability at the door for a fight that uses a lot of wire work and special effects, but they fit the escalating fantasy of the film.  I said Jet was more of a supporting character, and he is, but the lion’s share of the fights go to him, just as it should.

Kiai-Kick’s Grade: 8

 Jet Li and Wen Zhang take us on a hilarious romp through the “kung fu” cop genre, and fight choreographer Corey Yuen pulls out the stops to make this one of the best kung fu comedies to come around in a long while!

Badges of Fury is out today from the good folks at Wellgo USA!

 

NEXT: Mark Dacascos will teach you how to fight the Brazilian way in Only The Strong!