The Grandmaster (2013) Chinese Movie Information
Title in Chinese – 一代宗师
Title in Pinyin – Yi Dai Zong Shi
Genre – Kung Fu
Subject/theme – The life of the Kung Fu master Ip Man
Language – Mandarin
Region – China
China – 8 January 2013
Hong Kong – 10 January 2013
Taiwan – 18 January 2013
Singapore – 31 January 2013
Movie Runtime – 123 minutes
The movie starts with a background in Ip Man’s childhood, his training in Kung Fu and his marriage and family. With the background complete, the movie switches to the present where Ip Man follows the rules and etiquette of kung fu and formally challenges Gong Yutian who is an aging kung fu master from the north east to a fight. Ip Man wins the fight and Yutian returns to the north east. After he leaves his daughter Gong Er challenges Ip Man in attempt to restore the honor of their clan’s kung fu. The match is a stalemate but Ip Man is clearly superior. After getting physical in the fight, the two of them develop a mutual attraction.
Yutian’s top student Ma San visits him in his home and after exchanging bitter words, a fight breaks out. Yutian defeats Ma San but dies of his injures. Gong Er returns home and vows revenge even though the clan elders tell her to forget revenge and get married.
Editor’s Review of The Grand Master – 6/8
Yes, another IP Man move!!! This time Ip Man is played by Tony Leung Chiu-wai instead of Donnie Yen. The Grandmaster has a good balance between fight scenes, the philosophy of kung fu and the customs and traditions of kung fu schools. Very refreshing to see after so many kung fu movies that are just fight scenes joined together by flimsy plots. The biggest problem with The Grandmaster is the scenes tend to be very dark and gloomy and the atmosphere of the movie is not much better. For a biography of a legendary kung fu master you’d expect a story that was a little less surreal and more realistic. The Grandmaster was more about nostalgia and unrequited love. Typical of Wong Kar-wai’s movies but not typical of the legendary kung fu master the movie is based on. The fighting is well done with very good choreography but they border on fantasy with the combatants jumping through the air, balancing on stair rails and turning rickshaws into kindling with a kick. Definitely worth watching but not as good as the earlier Ip Man 1 and Ip Man 2 with Donnie Yen.
The Grandmaster Links
IMDb Movie Database for The Grandmaster