review by Seraph

Support the Site by Buying from YesAsia

Neo love this movie too!
What can I say that hasn't already been said about this movie? How classic can one movie be? The Jet versus Donnie fight! The multi level table fight against the white lotus clan! Jet and Kwan Chi Lam sharing tender moments amidst the turmoil! If there's one word to describe this movie it is "Classic".

Jet li and Rosamund Kwan reprise their roles from the first movie as Legendary hero Wong Fei Hung and 13th aunt respectively. Unfortunately Yuen Biao does not return as Foon. He is however, nicely replaced with a more comedic performance by Max Mok.

The story is actually very complex. So much so it would take hours for me to explain and probably ruin your enjoyment of it if you haven't already seen it. Suffice to say there are many conflicts within the film. And...as with the first OUATIC. Jet's nemesis this time round, 'General Yan' is never portrayed as an out and out villain. It all depends on each persons dreams and own point of view. Add to this stunning a set
of martial arts encounters all tied up in a truly remarkable story of one mans struggle against...well Everything!!! And you begin to see why this movie has such high praise, from both myself, and pretty much everyone else who loves Hong Kong action cinema.

Master Wong's enemies this time Include 'The White Lotus Clan' who are intent on wiping out all western influences on China. And also a far deadlier threat (Immediately at least) from closer to home, in the form of Donnie Yen's 'General Lan'. And when 13th aunt accidently becomes involved Wong Fei Hung leaps into action once more!

I have to say that the the action here (From Yuen Woo Ping) has to be some of the best ever filmed. Sure there's the usual high flying wire work. But somehow (and I find this missing from most recent movies) Jet's natural talents are also very much on display. Donnie Yen also shows what a talented screen martial artist he is with his fantastic display with a wet cloth (Staff).. Just watch it. you'll be amazed. Added mention must go to Xin Xin Xiong. Who, once again gives an incredible physical performance.

It's not just the action that is above par. Each and every aspect of the production is superb. From Arthur Wong beautiful cinematography, to each set on display. You really are whisked away to the desired time and place. Acting also is a major plus here. Jet Li especially, showing Master Wong's single minded determination along side a more caring nature which was less seen in the first movie. Max Mok injects a much needed spark of comedy too, In what is otherwise a fairly dark story. Tsui Hark directs competently but it's the way he uses his actors and sets which you'll really remember. (No silly camera tricks here).

All in all it may seem I am praising this movie too much. Well maybe I am. But that's just the way I feel about it. If you haven't already seen this. You must give it a go. I feel you will at least get some level of enjoyment from it. The movie has it all... Action, Comedy, a great story and genuinely touching romance.

I rate it 9/10

Neo Comments: I agree with Seraph that this is a Classic and wat a hell of a classic it was. The fight between Yen and Li is the best of the best and more importantly unforgetable! There is something in OUATIC 1 and 2, this very magical feel to it! Cheers Neo.

Comment on this movie on HK Neo Reviews Forum

Product Title : Once Upon a Time in China 2
Artist Name(s) : |Jet Li| Rosamund Kwan| Donnie Yen
Language : Cantonese | Mandarin
Duration : 108 minutes
Reviewed by Seraph (Paul) - September 2004