Thursday, 24 July 2008

The Forbidden Kingdom Review

When you're talking dream teams you'll think along the lines of Obama/Clinton, Rooney/Ronaldo, Pacino/DeNiro, Jenna Loves Briana. And the names of Jackie Chan and Jet Li have to be pretty damn high. When your talking dream teams for (living) martial arts actors you can't get higher. But its a shame that its been left so late. So late in fact that the former is 54 years old and the latter, no spring chicken at 45, has pledged his retirement from ever doing this kind of film ever again. If Jenna and Briana had left it this late I wouldn't be watching their movie as often as I do.

The Forbidden Kingdom tells of a kung fu obsessed wuss Michael '11!!?!!' Angarano (just for you Emma) transported to China via a staff of justice, or wrath, or milk or something. There he teams up with Chan (drunken warrior) and Li (warrior monk) to save the Monkey King (Li, again) from the Jade Warlord. Its all told in such an 80's way I expected Eddie Murphy to show up. Its The Golden Child with more monkeys, Yay! but less big titted snake women, Boo!

Having not actually seen that many Kung Fu movies, and only having watched Monkey whilst high as a kite, I know next to nothing about this genre. So I'm one of the worst people to review this movie. So stop reading and go make yourself a hat out of kittens or something. I can tell you that the fat guy in front of me was laughing and pointing out things to his fat partner every two seconds so perhaps there was lots to enjoy on another geekier/fanboy level. Either that or there were many scenes involving food.

As for the fabled Jackie/Jet face off, it was more than enjoyable (perhaps the weeing on his face thing was a step too far) but as with most extended action sequences its only real job was to divert you from the flimsy plot. Michael '11!!?!' Angarano actually takes the majority of the film away from the two stars and you can't help thinking it might have been a better film had it focused more on him. Instead you wait for the masters to show up and do something bloody spectacular which they don't really do. You yawn and move on.

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