The Sorcerer and the White Snake (2011)

sorcerer and the white snakeThe Sorcerer and the White Snake (2011)

Directed by: Siu-Tung Ching

Starring: Jet Li, Shengyi Huang, Raymond Lam

three-stars

You may not know this, but there’s a surprisingly wide subgenre of kung fu action movies which are basically just fantasy stories where people jump around and kick dragons in the face. If you weren’t aware, you’ve been missing out boy, hoo-doggie. Though it generally lacks the same kind of oomph you’d get from a really good Bruce Lee movie, for example (the subgenre is entirely wire-fu stuff, from what I’ve seen), it adds a really refreshing twist on the boring old high fantasy Tolkein ripoff stuff you get over here.

There’s a lot of stuff going on in this movie, but it centers around the relationship of a fisherman and his mysterious wife nobody knows the origin of. Jet Li is a monk who goes around the country killing demons, and he finds out that this lady is actually a super powerful demon in disguise. Of course the monk thinks that she’s using the fisherman and wants to eat his soul, but could it be possible that she just genuinely fell in love with the guy?

The action isn’t wholly remarkable, but there are some great special effects and I really enjoyed the lighthearted tone of most of the film. Basically the main plot is only a third of the movie and the rest is goofy cute stuff with all the comic relief characters, demons and humans alike. Jet Li is super badass in this movie, and it’s really cool to see him as a good guy who’s also the antagonist. Really, the film’s worth watching just for his very well developed no-nonsense monk character.

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