Originally posted by jinzin
Okay, so this review's gonna have quite a few spoilers.... so while I don't think I or anyone else for that matter can actually "ruin" this film for anyone, if you don't want to read these spoilers then please move onto the next reply in the thread.
Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li:
Twenty minutes after this film had concluded I found myself driving back home trying to carry on a conversation with a friend. Talking about everything from the zoo, to ex-lovers I couldn't deviate from the one thought that kept snaking through my mind.... "God that was an awful movie."
Basically this movie's about Chun Li in her quest to become homeless and fight villains with the audacity to dream of slum domination. Yup, no world conquests for these guys, apparently buying up cheap property's what world class terrorist organizations like Shadowlaou are up to these days... I mean I knew the economy was in bad shape, but really?
Oh! And Chun Li learns how to shoot noisy light balls from her hands!
.... No not fireballs, which might actually.. I dunno... EXPLODE, or do damage of some sort, but light balls, which push enemies off high points to their doom!
What does that have to do with the mostly realistically interpreted plot? Your guess is a good as mine because it's the only Chi based attack in the movie carrying on without reason, explanation or even an antithetical power like Bison's psycho power... which took a back seat to make way for his movie abilities which consist of making tiger noises with punches and using kicks which have a delayed effect by 2 seconds.... CAHRAZY I know.
The only thing that was worse than the overall plot was the casting choice and character representations. Bleh!
We've got the title character Chun Li. Kristin Kreuk might be hot, she might be talented but for all the things she is, she's not Chun Li. She's not even Asian, which one would be inclined to think is a bit of a big deal when dealing with a character like chun li. And while it would have been nice to see Kreuk pumped up for the role all we see instead is horrible horrible, HORRIBLE looking shoes..... constantly.
Charlie Nash, who isn't military, isn't blond and dorky looking, and isn't even a fighter in the film. Instead we get a greasy looking Chris Klein with 12 o'clock shadow and a receding hairline with a style akin to the Da Vince Code who's more interested in his partner than getting anywhere in his investigation.
Gen played by Mortal Kombat's Robin Shao who like Kreuk (while talented), simply doesn't fit his role very well as that of a near ancient grandmaster type.
Bison played by Neal McDonough, who...... *sigh*..... Let's put it like this: if you took everything Bison was (A communistic, military looking megalomaniac leader of a terrorist organization, obsessed with world domination, street fighters, his own Psycho Power and the technology to enhanced it and HUGE).... and..... completely stripped him of it, you would have Neal McDonough's Bison, a small, over the hill looking, business suit wearing white guy with a beard, "unique" punching bags, and a headquarters full of Humvees... Yikes....
And apparently they thought that was an effective way to go with the characters because Vega followed in suite, as the only things that even remotely link him to his game/manga counterpart were his mask and claws. Rather than being a Spanish bull fighter with a man-gorgeous face and a massive body, we get the Black Eyed Peas' Taboo dressed in ninja garb... hmmmm ooookay? I can't really comment on Taboo's performance because frankly the script doesn't go into his character development whatsoever, and how could they? As he's decimated 20 seconds into fighting the title character. He's a badguy, he has claws, he has a mask, and that's enough. Or at least I'm guessing that's what they were thinking, assuming they WERE thinking.
Then we have Micheal Clarke Duncan's role as Balrog.... Sorry but MCD just doesn't come off to me as a street thug Mike Tyson type. He has far too commanding a presence for such a role. To be honest, with a few inches cut from his waist line and some kickboxing training he would have made a much better Sagat... Oh wait! That's right this movie doesn't have all the cool iconic SF characters. Doh! Which.......
How does this movie NOT have Ryu, NOT have Ken, NOT have Guile?! Some of the most well regarded, recognizable, and interesting characters in the series got completely bypassed. They thought it was a bad idea to include these characters but a GOOD idea to involve the whole Rose/Bison's soul plot line which has ALWAYS been bizarre?
At first I thought that this might be some sort of prelude to more cinematic Street Fighter adventures that the audience might actually WANT to see which would bring these aforementioned characters to the forefront, but now I don't even know about that. Balrog got a tube stuck in his chest and was frozen solid, Bison had his head turned completely 180 degrees.... I half expected FATALITY to be herd roaring over the soundtrack, and forgot I was actually watching a Street Fighter movie. It's a good thing they had a reminder of that as Gen shows up at Chun Li's with some Kinko's flyer from 1991 advertising the SF tournament and briefly mentions Ryu..... Yep, the only reference to the main character of the real SF story... and they pronounced his name wrong... (He's Japanese not a loaf of bread!)
All and all, this is about as bad as any made for Sci-fi channel action/horror flick and only half as interesting. With all their "re-envisioning" I almost fail to see why they related this to the Street Fighter title whatsoever. Of course, if they hadn't, I suppose, they would have lost their single sell-able premise.
The worse part about it IMO is the fact that this is really going to hurt the brand on Clarke Duncan and Mcdonough who I think are great actors.
It also doesn't lend favors to Kreuk or Taboo, who could have not only had some decent breakthrough movie performances but one of the most badass, hardcore slugfests in movie history (SF the animated movie Chunvs.Vega anyone?), but instead got handed this.
Chris Kline? Meh, he should have stayed doing American Pie movies or chick flicks, he's not an action star.
It's also frustrating because I KNOW there have been better SF screenplays out there, better fanfics too, and quite frankly, I could come up with a better plot than this in 5 minutes, though that's no great feat.
The Van Damme movie was fast paced, over the top, and ridiculous, but at least it knew what it was enough to make fun of itself a bit. This movie takes it self seriously and thinks it's doing a good job.
This is 2 hours and 20 bucks I won't get back so I'll just say this, It's not really worth going to see at the theatre; might wanna wait til it hits redbox on one of those nights that you've simply seen all the other movies in the machine you care to see. If you need to scratch that Street Fighter itch, the animated movie would have you better off, or at the very least getting a few beers and watching the old live action flick which IMO was far more entertaining.
If you DO go into see this.... where your expectations are concerned? Aim LOW.
dang. and yet, my love of street fighter demands i watch it...
Originally posted by Mairuzu
shes half chinese
she doesn't really look THAT asian, though, to be fair...