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Review Man of Tai Chi (2013)

 genre:martial arts, action

If you are like me you would raise an eyebrow to Keanu Reeves directing. He is what? A martial arts flick? I know Keanu Reeves is most famous for his role as Neo where he portrays this god like creature very adapt in martial arts. That does not automatically make him a martial artist. It might have sparked a love for it which may be on the of the reasons for him to direct. Still it is not something I would associate him doing. And this is the vibe you will be getting from Main of Tai Chi throughout. There is more than enough decent fighting. But none of it really grabs you especially if you are like me a fan of the genre who has seen quite a great deal of excellent martial arts flicks in his life. A little philosophy is thrown in the mix to make it more interesting that might appeal to some. For me it did not flow well since it diminished the tension and pace too much. There is a lack of urgency that should compel you to watch bringing the focus on the evil characters. Keanu was not bad as the villain but he sure could have been more fierce or wild. A villain in movies like these need to be colourful and loud and Keanu's style of acting simply is not suited for that kind of role. Even in his style he should have done more to show how evil he can be. Without this it becomes too difficult to see Tiger Hu Chen as a proper hero. In fact it makes him quite unsympathetic at times because some of his acts lack good motivation. Very much in the same vein as Anakin Skywalker suddenly becoming very evil (I will never forgive you for that George Lucas for not giving me the character development I wanted and needed.).  If they would have gone over the top with him being an anti hero I might have bought it but not in the way they did here. It simply lacked fire or passion. Now knowing he is not that experienced yet as an actor I do think he has the potential of becoming bigger. We will see. Overall Main of Tai Chi is ok but not one I can recommend. BTW Iko Uwais from The Raid and Merantau Warrior has an unimpressive special appearance.


Unknown said...

Actually, I thought it was pretty good. That yell Keanu makes, plus his face expression when he is getting hit on the ground, that is freaking priceless.

chrichtonsworld.com said...

I am a little more critical when it comes to martial arts movies because it is one of my favourite genres. And for me those movies have to really offer something really good action wise. Plus I have seen much better.

And yes it is always priceless to see Keanu have more expressions than the one he has. BTW if you haven't done so yet I can recommend John Wick. It's awesome!




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