Tai Chi Zero (2012)
In legendary Chen Village, everyone is a martial arts master, using their powerful Chen Style Tai Chi in all aspects of their lives. Lu Chan has arrived to train, but the villagers are forbidden to teach Chen Style to outsiders, and do their best to discourage him by challenging him to a series of fights. Everyone, from strong men to young children, defeats him using their Tai Chi moves. But when a man from the village's past returns with a frightening steampowered machine and plans to build a railroad through the village at any costs, the villagers realize they may have no choice but to put their faith in Lu Chan... who has a secret power of his own. -- (C) Variance … More
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Critic Reviews for Tai Chi Zero
"Tai Chi Zero" is often more distracting than diverting with its everything-goes aesthetic - there are strains of steampunk, manga and silent film comedy, with video-game touches.
"Tai Chi Zero" is loads of fun to watch, especially a battle in which watermelons, bananas and other fruits and veggies serve as flying weapons.
A martial-arts adventure with more video-game and comic-book DNA than the traditional kung fu flick, "Tai Chi Zero" is good, if empty-headed, fun.
Exhausting to watch, Tai Chi Zero is all flash and little substance.
"Zero" is the first part of a trilogy. Part two, titled "Tai Chi Hero," is due in January. The legend is off to a promising start.
Fung is enjoying himself so much that he doesn't want the movie to end - and his delight is infectious.
Sort of a kung-fu film through a 'Scott Pilgrim' lens, it is a slight but stylistic romp.
Lavishes much care on the scenario, but the nonstop CGI could be a drawback for purists.
It's meant either to aggressively defy convention or to distract moviegoers from a story that is pedestrian and predictable.
A love triangle and some Steampunk machinery add interest, and Fung's spunky inventiveness makes this worth seeing.
The true gist is a kung fu movie for the modern age: jam packed full of the hyper kinetic stimuli of an ADHD generation.
Tai Chi Zero is constantly evolving and changing as a film. It's as if it completely redefines what a dynamic martial arts film can and should be.
And although disappointed by this first part of the trilogy, there was enough to hold my interest to make me at least willing to give part 2 a chance.
An energetic martial-arts romp with a stylish steampunk twist, Tai Chi 0 assaults the viewer with frenetic fight scenes, audacious video-game-inspired graphics, and nearly enough goofball humor to have it qualify as a comedy.
Essentially a live-action anime, it sweats rivulets of Tarantino-era digital anxiety from all pores-every kick, punch, pan, and zoom exaggerated for maximum impact.
Splashy but ultimately an empty bauble...By the halfway point you'll likely be more exhausted than exhilarated.
Audience Reviews for Tai Chi Zero
There is so much going on in Tai Chi Zero, the film is at risk of getting lost in its own bonkers narrative. The film sees The Freak enter a village to learn kung-fu, unfortunately nobody teaches outsiders. When a railway company comes to destroy the houses in the village, The Freak sets out to prove himself.The film has lots of little cute details, such as each cast member being introduced with a credit that also says what they are famous for. Many have come from the top Tai Chi schools around the world and so on. The fight scenes are brilliant, and are often accompanied by on screen notes of how the fighters are moving. It sounds odd, and it is. Many of the techniques used are highly unnecessary but adds a fresh interpretation to the genre. Fun and silly, with a mixture of steampunk thrown in, Tai Chi Zero is a little bit different, for better or worse.More
Ever since he was a kid, Yang Lu Chan(Jayden Yuan) has had the ability to mimic the martial arts skills of others, often putting them to good use. The downside is that it is killing him. After he is the only survivor of a sneak attack, he travels to a remote village to learn how to safely harness his abilities. And is instantly rebuffed. To be fair, the villagers have bigger things on their mind like the coming railroad and electricity but the presentation from Chen Yu Niang(Angelababy) and Fang Zi Jing(Eddie Peng) does not go exactly as planned.
"Tai Chi Zero" is enjoyable on multiple levels as it combines silent films, video games and martial arts into one fun concoction. And the in-movie credits while potentially distracting are not an entirely bad idea. So, in the end, this inventive film keeps things moving which causes it to not sink under the weight of being the Great Steampunk Hope that takes place at a pivotal point in China's history.
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