Thursday, April 10, 2014

Man of Tai Chi (2013)

Man of Tai Chi (2013). So this movie apparently didn't get very good reviews. I can understand why. I wouldn't say it is a horrible movie. Although I don't know if this had any kind of theater release (aka not straight to DVD), I could see going to the dollar movie to see it. Or since it's now avaible via Redbox, maybe renting it from there for $1.20. However, if you already have Netflix, it's also available there but it would be a minimal charge since you already pay a flat fee for video streaming.

The movie was very Matrix-like for me. First off, Keanu Reeves looks almost the exact same as his character, Neo. He "acts" the same. Wears very similar clothes minus the sunglasses. Fights the same. However, he's the bad guy in this movie. He just wants to put on the best damn fight club he can but add in the world wide web and he can make millions off the fights.

The main character, "Tiger" Chen Lin-Hu (played by Tiger Chen is a pretty cool fighter. He's crafty, skilled and he only wants to make his teacher proud by showing how Tai Chi can be used for fighting even though his teach does not like fighting. Isn't this the typical premise of any martial arts movie? Learn a martial art, become a phenomenal master at the art, can't prove how awesome you are at it because it's not in the code, breaks the code, loses way, finds way, brings honor to their teacher (and sometimes self).

So, based on the two paragraphs above, you might be able to assess that this is basically Kickboxer, No Retreat, No Surrender, The Chinese Connection, or The Big Boss (aka Fists of Fury).

Just like all the movies I watch, there are criticisms that bother me. Stuff like "that wouldn't happen" or "why not just do [whatever] instead of [whatever]." You know shit like that. Again, I know it's a movie but it doesn't mean the shit don't need to be a little more believable in the sense of how things happen.

I'm very surprised that with Keanu as the director that a little more wasn't put in to the quality of the movie. I guess maybe the budget wasn't big enough for it. Looking here, it seems there is an estimated budge of $25M which is pretty low for "good" movie standards these days but it's also interesting to note that the opening weekend only grossed around $61K. This website show the worldwide gross to date (I guess) is only $5.2M. Slightly off topic—it makes you wonder why Hollywood would even begin to blame piracy when they put out not-so-good quality movies such as this.

That being said. If you had some time to blow, this movie wouldn't be a bad one to watch. I just wouldn't go out of your way or pay too much, greater than $2, to see it.

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