The human face of martial arts

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 11 August, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 11 August, 2011, 12:00am


With a title like Wuxia, you automatically know you're in for a martial arts action film. Director Peter Chan Ho-sun has put those familiar martial arts elements into the film.

But he has also added something else - the human side to the story, and at the same time provided his audience with a life lesson.

Paper-maker Liu (Donnie Yen Ji-dan) foils a robbery attempt at a village store. The robbers are killed.

Detective Xu (Takeshi Kaneshiro) arrives in the village to investigate. Things don't quite add up for Xu: one of the robbers is a skilful fighter, yet his life was taken by a local papermaker.

He begins to uncover secrets about Liu and his unexpected past.

The film features a lot of fight scenes that are wonderfully choreographed and executed on screen. Expect some brilliant and flashy kung fu by the actors. Any show with Yen doing the action is bound to be cool. In this respect, the film does not disappoint.

After Liu has killed the criminals, he begins to ponder the question of right and wrong: it is wrong to kill, but wiping out bad guys rids the world of evil. However, two wrongs don't make a right. The film makes you think long and hard about this moral dilemma.

Wuxia is fast-paced and lively. Give it a chance - it'll be an entertaining and rewarding ride.