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Conde Koma
2/05/2011 12:50am,
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v639/dboyzero/ip-man-2-poster-01-1.jpgIp Man 2: Legend of the Grandmaster
Hong Kong, 2010
Genre: Action, Historical
108 minutes
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1386932/

Donnie Yen returns as the Wing Chun master Ip Man as he struggles to teach martial arts in British-controlled Hong Kong.

Ip Man 2 picks up almost right where the first film left off, with our hero settling into his new home after fleeing from the Japanese in Foshan. Many of the cast from the previous installment reprise their roles, including Simon Yam, Louis Fan, and Lynn Hung. Veteran actors Kent Cheng and Sammo Hung join them on-screen, truly making this a star-studded affair. The story is essentially a re-hash of the last one, with Ip Man trying to fit in and teach his style of martial arts amidst foreign oppression. The villains are similarly one-note and caricaturized, leading to some absolutely hilarious hammed performances by the British antagonists. Yen and the supporting cast do well by comparison, but in the end the story is so blatantly nationalistic and contrived that it becomes hard to take anyone seriously. Even despite not securing the rights to feature Bruce Lee prominently, they couldnít resist tagging him along at the end, just to say they did.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v639/dboyzero/stills_ip_man2-1.jpgAnnounced even before the first Ip Man film was released, director Wilson Yip made sure to bring all the bells and whistles to the production of the sequel. The cinematography is absolutely gorgeous to behold, every shot taken with care and precision. It captures a sort of romantically harsh image of Hong Kong under British rule, definitely more hopeful and light-hearted than its predecessor. The score is appropriately optimistic and prideful, hitting all the right emotional notes when called for. Itís hard to say whether everything came together too obviously, but the story itself somewhat contributes to this. Regardless, all the production values of the film are very solid, delivering a solid aesthetic experience to the audience.

Sammo Hung returns to the franchise as fight choreographer, and itís fantastic to see his work again. Everything from the first movie is back and even bigger than before. There are more style on style matches than you can shake a stick at, and every fighter is endowed with great personality and character. The fights are fast-paced and are all nail-biters. The wire-fu goes just a little over the top, as does the cheesiness of the villain showdowns, but these sorts of things are to be expected in modern kung fu cinema. Yen and Hung do spectacularly, performing like true seasoned professionals. Newcomer Huang Xiaoming trained extensively before and during shooting to learn the art of Wing Chun, and his hard work shows. With a great blend between the classical and the modern, Ip Man 2 is great fun to watch, even with the blatant nationalist sentiment. Impressive visuals and even better fights, this is a great popcorn movie for anyone with an interest in Hong Kong film or martial arts movies.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v639/dboyzero/ip-man-2-1.jpg

Blog Link: http://fightfilmfriday.wordpress.com/2011/02/04/fight-film-friday-ip-man-2/

Takeshi
2/10/2011 1:05am,
Nice Review. It's good to see I wasn't the only one who noticed the extreme Nationalism at the end. It offended Karate so bad :(

chainpunch
2/10/2011 8:50am,
I thought the movie sucked and I did not notice many of what the review praised such as fights, cinematography, choreographer and i did not even notice the music.
The overly nationalistic theme is the icing on this “uneatable cake”.

Conde Koma
2/10/2011 2:32pm,
so what did you notice?

chainpunch
2/10/2011 3:01pm,
I have seen most new kung fu movies in Chinese so I admit it can be hard to follow along, the ones that seem well I will watch again when an English version comes out. I might get a more out of the movie the second time since I won’t be trying to read dialogue.

That being said take away the nationalistic plot which is contrived even for a kung fu movie the action was not impressive and the cinematography to me does not seem on par with other notable movies of today. If a kung fu film is not going to deliver on the action part the other areas seem moot but I really dont think this movie has anything to be remember for except it tired theme.

I cant really say I liked anything about the movie but I am still glad you are a consistent reviewer.

It is Fake
3/11/2011 9:40pm,
Saw it today on the big screen third favorite chun movie of all time. Nationalistic plot is a staple of KF movies. The wire work was minimal which is great. You could tell what scenes Sammo had a hand in and all the cameos were awesome.

I disagree that the plot was anymore contrived than the 100 other nationalistic plots and that includes bruce lee movies. I enjoyed that the boxing actually worked and they actually used the chain punches of death as a diversionary attack to open other areas of the body. I like that they toned down the invincibility of the chun. I also enjoyed the homage to Style vs. Style that is missed in all of the new movies.

I would have seen this sooner if either of you boneheads would have commented on the cameos in that movie.

JudOWNED
3/11/2011 9:52pm,
Nice review. I look forward to seeing it myself. (And then posting my own review! lol)


third favorite chun movie of all time.

Prodigal Son and Ip Man 1?

Conde Koma
3/11/2011 10:35pm,
which cameo did i miss? i thought i hit all the big ones.

the plot's not really any more contrived than the other recent KF films, but that doesn't mean it's not contrived.

It is Fake
3/11/2011 11:08pm,
You got one. Choreography wise I actually like IP2 better than IP. The story in one, although a downer, is much better in IP. The second for me is Warriors 2.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oEd-h1OOsQs

IP is number 4.


which cameo did i miss? i thought i hit all the big ones. You are like twelve or thirteen or something, you missed the ones that would be important to me and probably Judoowned.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OoHjxahdXd0&playnext=1&list=PL80443276159C3A01

Lo Meng,The guy who fought using monkey, better known as "The Toad" from 5 Deadly Venoms and a billion other Shaw Brother movies.

Also Fung Hak-On, the guy who fought using bagua, was a staple Bad Guy back in the day.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPQR8xXIdY8




the plot's not really any more contrived than the other recent KF films, but that doesn't mean it's not contrived. Go read chain's post and then read mine it'll make more sense.


That being said take away the nationalistic plot which is contrived even for a kung fu movie


I disagree that the plot was anymore contrived than the 100 other nationalistic plots and that includes bruce lee movies.That includes your "recent KF films" in my comment. In other words, you and I agree.

Conde Koma
3/11/2011 11:17pm,
Haha, I'm not that young, but I'm not that old either. sorry i missed the ones for you guys, i'll dig extra deep into research for my next kf film.

It is Fake
3/11/2011 11:23pm,
Naw don't worry about that. Go with what you know. You are a general across the board reviewer and that is good for the website. This is one of the two specific genres that I love, up until the wushu wuxia phase where I became more selective in what I watched.

There were about 5-6 other faces I recognized as minor characters from old school movies. The cast list is incomplete so, I have to break out some old movies to figure out who they played.

JudOWNED
3/12/2011 8:59am,
I almost said Warriors Two, because that is one of my favorite movies; not just favorite Chun movies, but favorite of all movies. Of course, I am partial to good old Beardy and rank his Cantonen Iron Kung Fu as one of my other all time faves. W2 gets overlooked by a lot of people, though I should have know you wouldn't be one of them.

PS. I love seeing Venoms in more modern roles. That's why I loved Hard Boiled.

It is Fake
3/12/2011 11:06am,
Yep, Warriors Two gets overlooked and I don't know why. Warriors Two is in my Top 20 of all time favorites. Hard Boiled was cool. Dude Beardy was one of the underrated greats. The fact Beardy had no Martial arts training or gymnastics makes him even more impressive.

My favorite movie with Beardy is The Victim.

Snake Plissken
3/12/2011 11:16am,
Saw it today on the big screen third favorite chun movie of all time. Nationalistic plot is a staple of KF movies. The wire work was minimal which is great. You could tell what scenes Sammo had a hand in and all the cameos were awesome.

I disagree that the plot was anymore contrived than the 100 other nationalistic plots and that includes bruce lee movies. I enjoyed that the boxing actually worked and they actually used the chain punches of death as a diversionary attack to open other areas of the body. I like that they toned down the invincibility of the chun. I also enjoyed the homage to Style vs. Style that is missed in all of the new movies.

I would have seen this sooner if either of you boneheads would have commented on the cameos in that movie.
I just came across this review.

Have to say, I liked the first Ip Man film better, however I can easily say that it isn't by much. Both were extremely well filmed and shot, acted, choreographed and acted. The fish market scene and the council of masters scenes are two of the finest I think I have ever viewed, I just didn't like the way they did the ending.

chainpunch
3/12/2011 11:52am,
I am glad you liked it but I really found the nationalism painful to endure. The nationalistic themes in most kung fu movies are baised on history. British stealing plundering, mistreatment of Chinese people then Wong Fei Hung to the rescue, okay. Japanese occupation of Shanghai, calling Chinese the "sick man of Asia" enter Huo Yuanjia and Liu Zheng Shen. Its hard to differentiate facts from legends with these charaters. Did Huo Yuanjia fight a Russian wrestler, a British boxer, Japanese Judicas (SP), die with controversy about being poison by the Japanese? Yes. Yip man did not flee the Japanese, it was the communist. Yip Man never fought an American boxer and the boxer was exaggerated to play a heal like the Russian who challenged the Chinese calling them sick man of Asia. After the Russian forfeited the fight to Huo Yuanjia he aditted the act was how he genrated business. The idea of nationalism is not unexpected in Yip Man II but I really feel its taken to extreme and not exaggeration but purely fictional. The audience is already cheering for Yip Man so why exaggerate so much? There was plenty of legend behind Yip Man to explore without complete fabrication.

To me the cameos were a disappointment for me so I never mentioned them. Its understood that these men are much older but I just might be a hard customer to please. There was a Soap Opera of Wing Chun I watched about 40 episodes. I bared threw it because I enjoyed the plot but I had the same feelings when I saw Gordon Los Cameo. He just seemed fat and so slow, for me the cameo would have been better served using some one that can move better.

JudOWNED
3/12/2011 1:42pm,
The Victim is easily one of the top 10 KF movies of all time. Which brings up another point, that just about anything involving Sammo Hung is gold. Magnificent Butcher. Pedicab Driver. Maybe not Martial Law, though. lol