Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 27
Fresh: 20 | Rotten: 7
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 6/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 3
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 6,697
As feuding warlords fight to expand their power, the noble monks of the Shaolin Temple clean up the mess left behind, tending to the injured while trying their best to protect the poor and weak. General Hou (Andy Lau) has caused much of this mess with his violent and ruthless tactics that rarely discriminate between soldiers and civilians. When Hou is betrayed by fellow general Cao Man (Nicholas Tse), he is forced into hiding, and takes refuge with the monks (including Jackie Chan) at their
Sep 9, 2011 Limited
Oct 25, 2011
Variance Films - Official Site
Watch It Now
An ambitious, almost epic drama that devotes as much time to introspection as it does to combat.
"Shaolin" fits in the more somber kung-fu tradition. But it also finds room for the genre's comic strain.
The epic feel to this Hong Kong action-drama helps balance a lack of hand-to-hand combat scenes.
Shaolin features a half-dozen impressive action set pieces, including an elaborate carriage chase and a battle inside the cages where Cao imprisons his workers.
The kung fu itself is great fun to watch, from the discipline of balancing on one foot on a wooden pillar, the other in the air, for hours at a time to the confrontations that send fist and feet flying.
One of those films that impresses you, even though it fails to set itself apart from other films in the genre.
Ambitiously staged set pieces fall victim to portentous technique, creating an ultimately irreconcilable chasm between how much one wants to like this movie and how much they actually do.
Jackie Chan brings some warm energy to his supporting role -- a rarity for this big star -- and turns in a delightfully self-effacing performance.
Frequently gripping and featuring a surprisingly spry supporting turn by Jackie Chan, it's a sturdy if unremarkable effort.
This rousing Shaolin is notable for the compassionate Buddhist philosophy that underpins what otherwise might have been just another Hong Kong period piece.
This is not a subtle film, and certainly not a great one, but it's made with bubbling brio and it's spectacular to look at. It's action filmmaking of the highest order.
Benny Chan's kung-fu film Shaolin both benefits from and is ultimately defeated by its own epic ambitions.
- Cook: [Shaolin Kids shouting to to Cook while he's taking on Cao Man's crooked soldiers] Stir fry them like vegetables. Knead them like noodle dough!
- The Abbot: From evil comes suffering. With justice they are gone. If neither are there you're so purified, nothing remains. Understand how to let go first, then you will have no attachments. Do this, and you can confront anything.
- General Hou Jie: Namo Amituofo.
- General Hou Jie: Why did you kill them?
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