Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Man with the Iron Fists

I was forgetful about seeing Wreck-It Ralph, likely due to old age. However, I am actively trying to forget seeing The Man with the Iron Fists.  Oy.  It was...uh...well....kind of a mess.  Ok, I've seen a lot worse so it's not TERRIBLE.  But I've seen a lot better so it's not GREAT. 

Let's start with directing issues.  Woody Allen, Clint Eastwood, Charlie Chaplin.  All men who are actors who can direct. George Clooney is another one. Ben Affleck can direct himself and he does it well.  Even Quentin Tarantino can direct himself in a movie.  He's not a good actor (I'm sure he's aware of this) but he is a good director so one more than makes up for the other.  There are actually a bunch more actors turned directors who are great at both jobs.  RZA is not one of those people.  His directing skills are better than his acting skills but not enough to make up for it.  Meanwhile I just looked up his entry on IMDB and he's in pre-production on two other movies.  Huh.  And, surprisingly, Iron Fists doesn't have a bad score on IMDB.  It's got a 55% on Rotten Tomatoes so maybe I'm just in a bad mood.  If I'm totally honest, I kind of dozed off a little in the middle of the movie.  Heh.

Maybe it's been too long since I've seen an old-school kung fu movie.  Iron Fists was a big love-letter to those cheesy kung fu movies everyone remembers watching but don't see much of nowadays.  Maybe I'm spoiled by incredible movies like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.where there's is amazing martial arts, great acting and a fantastic story.  Maybe I love martial arts movies but I love them more when they're not in English.  If I'm busy reading subtitles I'm probably less nitpicky about line delivery or pronunciation. Speaking of, RZA stars at the titular character and narrates the film as well.  The latter was a problem for me but not one I can get into without getting into some stormy waters. 
Anywhoodle, the action was a hoot.  It's violent as heck but violent in the martial arts/Tarantino-had-something-to-do-with-this kind of way.  Acting efforts by Lucy Liu (a madam), Russell Crowe (a very kinky Englishman) and Rick Yune (a son on a mission of revenge) were good but they would be fine in any movie. 

There maybe was a story but don't ask me about it.  There was some revenge and some stealing of gold going on but mostly it was all over the place.  Honestly no one is going to see this for story.  No, you'd go see this to see kick-ass martial arts. And if kick-ass martial arts is what you're looking for, then you'll be pleased.

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