Ip Man's peaceful life in Foshan changes after Gong Yutian seeks an heir for his family in Southern China. Ip Man then meets Gong Er who challenges him for the sake of regaining her family's honor. After the Second Sino-Japanese War, Ip Man moves to Hong Kong and struggles to provide for his family. In the mean time, Gong Er chooses the path of vengeance after her father was killed by Ma San.Written by
My father said mastery had three stages - being, knowing, doing. I know myself. I've seen the world. Sadly, I can't pass on what I know. This is a road I won't see to the end. I hope you will.
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The original version released in Asia removes a portion of Yi Xintian's subplot. The rain fight sequence between Xintian and Ip Man shown in the trailer, for example, was removed. However, Wong Karwai then recut the movie for a special Berlin Film Festival screening by incorporating the missing scenes back, but editing out several scenes from the original version including a fight sequence between Ip Man and a Hong Kong challenger. Both versions are missing crucial segments that made all three main characters' journey feel incomplete. The actual finished movie was rumored to be 4 hours long. Wong Karwai mentioned he had no intention of releasing the 4 hour version. See more »
Magnificent in its Original International Cut Version
THIS IS A REVIEW OF THE INTERNATIONAL CUT, NOT THE 'HARVEY WEINSTEIN' American VERSION:
It was finally time for the great iconoclastic Hong Kong director to turn to martial arts in his intense and atmospheric telling of the great grandmaster teacher, Ip man, and he doesn't disappoint.
Wong Kar-wai brings the poetic beauty of his "In the Mood for Love" to this Chinese action genre and executes it with a precise rhythmic heightening reminiscent of Sam Peckinpah at his best, while bringing out the experience of living through the Japanese invasion of China during WWII.
The cast is magnificent, especially Tony Leung as the Ip man and Ziyi Zhang as Gong Er who perfectly embodies a kung-fu mistress trying to avenge her father.
A Wong masterpiece to put on a level with his finest work!
PS: One particular reviewer earlier criticized the editing of this film which, to me, smacks of putting down the film for not being more conventional. Sometimes it is difficult to put aside expectations of what one wants a film to be in favor of what the actual film on the screen is. "The Grandmaster" is, in fact, brilliantly edited. Wong is, if nothing else, a perfectionist in taking years to mold his assembled footage into his own personal rhythmic poem, idiosyncratically emphasizing downbeats and rests as precise as a great composer. What you see here is Wong Kar-wai's personal vision, take it or leave it. I wouldn't change a frame, or a single edit. It strikes me as a perfect diamond by this exceptional, if eccentric, cinema artist.
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