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Once Upon A Time In Shanghai (2014)

Once Upon A Time In Shanghai (2014)

Once Upon A Time In Shanghai (2014)

Once Upon A Time In Shanghai (2014)

Once Upon A Time In Shanghai (2014)

A laborer moves to Shanghai in the hope of becoming rich. But ends up using his kung fu skills to survive.

Now this is what I'm talking about! This is what Shanghai is! This is what I expected to see when I watched Shanghai (2010) and though I don't recall much about that movie, I do remember feeling deeply disappointed.

Here we have friendship, love, brotherhood, family, justice, vengeance, sacrifice, Samu Hung, Andy On, Philip Ng, Yongchen Liu along with many others and a story of a Shanghai in the 1930s ruled by Long Qi and the Axe Gangs. The Japanese are plotting to take over, and Ma Yongzhen just arrived fresh off a boat.

The movie isn't really in black and white, but at the start that's what it looks like. When we leave the boat and venture out into the world we realize it's more like white and brown, colors so saturated the nuances barely show through (unlike the covers above). I thought I'd have liked to see the movie in color, but the darker nuances build up the atmosphere in a unique way and after a while I'm snug and settled in. Well, not snug, more like constantly at the edge of my seat. But settled in.

There's dance, there's music, there's tumbling around, there's fighting, eating, glancing at each other through the windows and the over the rice bowls... just like I'd expect from an Asian movie of such grand proportions! It has elements of both old and new. It has style and it has grit. It's nice. It's sad. It's fun. And the fight are masterful. Great watch.

I couldn't find the perfect cover image so I made four.

 rated 5/5: friggin awesome


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