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Ip Man: The Final Fight

 
 
Film Information
 

Plot: n postwar Hong Kong, Ip Man is reluctantly called into action once more, when what begins as a challenge from rival kung fu schools, leads him into a face-off against the Triads.
Release Date: VOD - 5th June, Blu-ray & DVD 12th June.
Format: Blu-Ray, DVD & VOD.
Director(s): Herman Yau.
Cast: nthony Wong, Eric Tsang, Gillian Chung, Marvel Chow, Jiang Luxia, Xiong Xinxin and Ken Lo. Action Choreography by Chung-Chi Li & Kwok Lam Sin.
BBFC Certificate: 12.
Running Time: 100m 23s.
Country Of Origin: Hong Kong.
Language: Cantonese, English Subtitles.
Review By: Paula Hammond
Genre:
 
Film Rating
 
 
 
 
 
4/ 5


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Bottom Line


Anthony Wong gives a magnetic, career-defining performance in a film that both stands on its own and complements the wider Ip Man franchise.


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Posted June 5, 2017 by

 
Film Review
 
 

Since the first Ip Man film in 2008, starring Donnie Yen, the story of Bruce Lee’s tutor has captivated Hong Kong film-makers.

While that first film – and its sequels – used Ip as a vehicle for kick-ass action, many fans understandably wanted to know more about the man behind the myth. Herman Yau’s The Legend Is Born attempted to do just that in a film that cleverly complemented Donnie Yen’s more action-orientated series.

Yau’s sequel, The Final Fight, follows Ip’s later life, from the age 56 to his death at 79.

Arriving in Hong Kong in 1949, Ip Man (Anthony Wong) and his family, are looking to make a fresh start. They are quickly adopted by a group of passionate students who are desperate to learn the Chinese martial art of Wing Chun. Against this background, is a Hong Kong awash with political unrest, organised crime, and backbreaking poverty.

While the Donny Yen films were plot-light at times, The Final Fight often feels like there are too many storylines trying to squeeze into 100 minutes of film. But, while the pacing and story-telling occasionally falter, Anthony Wong’s performance never does. It’s Wong who holds the whole together with a truly magnetic and career-defining performance.

As in The Legend Is Born, Director Herman Yau delights in period nostalgia. With lighting and colorful studio sets, alongside some stand-out fight sequences, The Final Fight feels like a ‘60s Hong Kong classic that you’ve somehow never seen before.

A lifelong martial arts practitioner, Wong spent over a year preparing to play the role of Ip Man and the results are impressive. However, The Final Fight isn’t an action movie in the traditional sense. There are some memorable sequences, but Fight focuses more on the morality and philosophy of kung fu than its practice. All of this makes for a thought-provoking viewing experience.

Ip Man: The Final Fight, is by no means perfect but does give fans exactly what they have been asking for: a fully-fleshed Ip Man, and film that both stands on its own and complements the wider Ip Man franchise.


Paula Hammond - Features Editor

 
Paula Hammond is a full-time, freelance journalist. She regularly writes for more magazines than is healthy and has over 25 books to her credit. When not frantically scribbling, she can be found indulging her passions for film, theatre, cult TV, sci-fi and real ale. If you should spot her in the pub, after five rounds rapid, she’ll be the one in the corner mumbling Ghostbusters quotes and waiting for the transporter to lock on to her signal… Email: paula.hammond@filmjuice.com


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