Tonight's movie de jour was Fearless...
I didn't actually realise it was going to be a "reading movie" (ie, with subtitles), since I think that all the other movies in the same vein that I've been to see have been dubbed. But it didn't really make that much difference to the movie experience, other than the usual "problems" with subtitles, namely trying to keep track of what people are saying, but trying to watch their faces at the same time.
I'm sad to say though, that when you compare Fearless to the other movies from that genre that I've seen, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Hero and House of Flying Daggers, it just doesn't stack up.
That's not to say that it's a bad movie necessarily... it's just not as lush and visual and grand as the other three. It tries it's best about halfway through the movie, but by then it just feels like it's too little too late.
And I have to say, the first half of the movie I just spent being frustrated with Jet Li's character... partly because the character is so arrogant and self-centred... but also because Li seems to be giving this really over the top performance and almost literally chewing the scenery as he goes. I know why he did it though... so that he actually had somewhere to go when his character finally starts to redeem himself. But it's still slightly annoying to watch.
The fight sequences are, as you would expect from something choreographed by Yuen Wo Ping, both beautiful and brilliantly shot... yeah, there were a couple of spots where my brain either went "that's not physically possible" or else "there was some CGI in there somewhere", but nothing overly stood out.
And there is a LOT of fighting, especially in the first half, surrounded by just enough plot to stop you from getting bored... in fact, I think the first five minutes or so is solid fighting, then we get into the plot and the whys and wherefores.
I don't know that I would recommend rushing out to see Fearless on the big screen, but it's probably a good "Friday night DVD & Pizza" movie.
yani's rating: 2 Wu Shu masters out of 5