- Hilariously dark and well worth the watch! 7/1/2014 12:00:00 AM by Movie-Misfit
The funniest man in the cinematic world (Stephen Chow Sing Chi) stays behind the camera (unfortunately) as writer and director for this epic and hilarious retread of his amazing films; A Chinese Odyssey 1 & 2.
That said, and as a fan of Zhang Wen (which has grown more so after seeing this), the film is a solid Chi film that is worthy of a place in any fans collection!
With dark humour akin to that of 'From Beijing With Love' and others, the comedy elements are fast and clever, matched by the tense moments of horror that sometimes even left me (a fan of HK cinema for over 30 years), with my mouth open.
But it was awesome!!
Journey To The West: Conquering The Demons is a hit. Its also great to see Shu Qi in an ass kicking hilarious role which I think suits her much better than the serious dramas. Lets hope there will be a few sequels spawning from this, and all being well, a return in front of the camera for the incredible Chow Sing Chi!!
- Lost in Translation 7/30/2013 12:00:00 AM by siderite
The style of the movie immediately brings to memory Kung-Fu Hustle, also written and directed by Stephen Chow, but its target is a reinvention of the Journey to the West story.
Unfortunately, much of the symbolism used in the film is lost on me, since I know nothing of Chinese mythology. I am sure much of the characters and word games that I suppose mean a lot to a Chinese person, to me are just wacky and incomprehensible. That being said, the film is very nicely done, combining drama and comedy in a way that is mostly foreign to western cinema, good acting and cool special effects.
I have to admit that the movie makes me want to read some translation of Journey to the West, one of the Four Great Classical Novels, so, if that was Chow's purpose, the film is a success. I also have to admit that I liked the movie, considering whether to keep it for later viewing or not. As such, it is clearly above average, but the nagging feeling that a lot got lost in translation makes me rate it only so: above average.
- This movie tells a Buddhist story - don't listen to bad reviews 10/22/2013 12:00:00 AM by attilabarcellos
The movie is a wonderful experience, for Buddhists and for the general public that is able to enjoy fantastic stories.
It is about the first part of a very long story of the monkey god Wukong, a very powerful entity that used to annoy meditation practitioners at Buddha's time.
The special effects are above average and the overall experience, too.
There's a lot of action and funny moments, also. Nevertheless, I don't think that's a movie for children, after all. Please, don't listen to the bad reviews, they really aren't fit for this kind of movie.
Enjoy, being or not a Buddhist.
- Sadly no Stephen Chow or this movie will be perfect 2/9/2013 12:00:00 AM by plshelpme
Fortunately, the movie packs Stephen Chow's comedic style, or I would call it contains his soul. There's Chow's usual style of comedy, action, love story, and some meaning behind life. Well, what more is needed in a blockbuster movie? Unfortunately, nothing is perfect. I went into the cinema without any expectation, and I didn't read any reviews so I could enjoy the whole movie as if I was the first to do so. I understand that Chow directed this movie, and even demonstrated to retain the "feel" of his usual style. Still, I find the first 15 minutes of the movie to be a little dry in terms of humor. As the protagonist enters the scene it was a bit difficult for me to laugh. However, as the story unfolds, and as the mainstream humor pours in, laughter floods the cinema wave after another. To add, the protagonist's wacky hair style, does resemble Chow in some ways.
The CGI is of top quality, I can see the movie spending a lot of money on CGI. Many of the scenes contain a lot of visual detail and picturesque grounds. The music is familiar and lovely, I shall not reveal too much.
Show Luo's appearance in this movie was like his usual funny-self in his TV entertainment news. I would appreciate it more if he would have neglected his usual style and adopted a new one. It's not a bad thing, but it's not a good thing too, it lies somewhere on the neutral side. I guess on the good side, his fans will love to see him.
Trying my best not to disclose too much. This movie is a prequel to his previous 2 part movie, "A Chinese Odyssey Part One: Pandora's Box, and A Chinese Odyssey Part Two: Cinderella." The essence of this movie is how it somehow relates to "A Chinese Odyssey" in terms of how life is, in its cycle. The feelings the protagonist experienced in this movie is similar to what his disciple experienced in "A Chinese Odyssey". The good news for those who haven't seen "A Chinese Odyssey", is that you can watch this movie on its own.
Lastly, there are some tear-jerking scenes. My eyes welled up at some parts, but I stayed a man. I would give this a 9.5 out of 10 because of its imperfection, but the scores only allow whole numbers. So.... enjoy the movie.
- A truly brilliant work by film maestro Stephen Chow! It is clever, comical and colourful all at once. 2/11/2013 12:00:00 AM by dr-ong
An absolute breakthrough...! From the refreshingly inventive script ("X-MEN Origins" of Pigsy, Sandy etc.), mind-boggling CGI, dazzling Kungfu, beautiful cinematography, belly-aching comedy (look out for the hilarious fish demon purification scene), to the evocative moment when your heart is touched and your eyes streaming wet; which explains why it broke China's box office records, reaching USD$100 million (over RMB$0.6 billion) in 8 days (the fastest ever), and taking in USD$12.5 million (RMB$78 million) on the opening day alone (another first).
Stephen Chow has been honing his skill as a highly specialized film-maker par excellence, notably with Shaolin Soccer, Kung Fu Hustle, CJ7 and now Journey to the West - Conquering the Demons; injecting photo-realistic CGIs, comic innovations and content with a moral thread. Speaking of which, the key message that loving-kindness (Metta / Ci Ai / Universal Love) for all sentient beings is a transcendental quality that ultimately conquers ignorance, ego and hatred is conveyed pretty succinctly.*
Having watched it in both 2D and 3D, I must say that the stereoscopic version certainly heightened the virtual realism that gave James Cameron's Avatar an extra oomph.
The bad thing about this movie is - it leaves you hungry for even more, despite the running time being nearly 2 hours (110 min) in its cinematic version. Hopefully, Stephen Chow decides to produce a sequel, which would almost certainly need to feature a celestial dragon, perhaps like the magnificent one from Sam Neill's The Dragon Pearl.
*See Dhammapada (Ancient Collection of Short Sayings by The Buddha) Verse 5 - Hatred is never appeased by hatred. It is appeased only by loving-kindness. This is a timeless law.