...our high hopes can't obscure the fact that this is muddled storytelling that skitters over the surface of mysteries and psychologies that we want to plunge into and explore.
| Original Score: B-
The 108 minutes that did survive the winnowing impulses of The Weinstein Company make for a lumpy, disjointed pseudo-biopic, one that loses interest in its subject halfway through.
| Original Score: 6/10
With so many years spent on it, Wong should have been able to see that the structure wasn't coming together and that his characters needed further work.
| Original Score: 2/4
More than anything Wong has ever made, the movie chokes on exposition, its more poetic concerns stifled by its surfeit of plot.
The Grandmaster lacks focus or drive as director Wong Kar-wai flails among the elements of Ip Man's life for something to hold onto and comes up with little except that late in life he taught Bruce Lee.
| Original Score: 5/10
The action choreography (by the great Yuen Woo-ping) feels oddly rhythmless; likewise, Wong's depictions of the larger-than-life characters achieve little emotional resonance.
It's a series of lovely moments that never quite come together into a movie.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
For those who aren't ardent students of kung fu's schools and styles, however, the movie is, for most of its length, a lifeless snore.
The film, more likely to invite comparisons to the writings of Marcel Proust than the previous Ip Man films, is a gorgeous folly that never entirely emerges from its creator's head.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
How could something that is so gorgeous also be so damn dull?
| Original Score: 2/10
As commendable as Wong's film is at visualizing things, it's far less proficient at contextualizing them.
| Original Score: 2/5
Blending the markings of a kung fu epic with scenes of stark emotional longing, Wong Kar-wai's latest movie offers a hybrid that's hard to decipher.
This super-serious, horribly-told story may focus on kung fu, but it put me in an almost instant sleeper hold.
| Original Score: 1/4
lovingly photographed, disjointed meditation of a life, an era in martial arts and a legacy, but its appeal beyond audience members with an appreciation Ip Man or the director may be limited.
| Original Score: 2.5
In the absence of genuine profundity, but with dazzling craft on frequent display, his most ardent devotees may summon enough loyalty to defend this one as a noble failure.
The movie ultimately winds up falling between two stools, failing as both a biography and an action film.
The cinema confusion that persists here would be acceptable, for this is after all chop-socky with pretentions, but the deadpan solemnity makes for too weighty a load.
An emotional moving, thrilling and provocative drama that's highly entertaining but at times loses itself with its lack of storytelling.
Wong Kar Wai's new epic The Grandmaster is an exquisite-looking film and leading man, Tony Leung, is a quietly compelling presence in it.
| Original Score: 2.1/2`
Wong has done this dynamic better in virtually all of his past work; there's a pretty dullness here that shouldn't be confused for mastery.
| Original Score: 3/5