Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Review

Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Review | by

Recommended Audience: Fans of Donnie Yen, Wang Baoqiang, Charlie Yeung and action/kungfu/martial arts movie fans

Kungfu Jungle Movie Official Poster

Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Synopsis

A vicious killer (Wang Baoqiang) is going around Hong Kong killing top martial arts opponents. When convicted killer and Kung Fu expert, Xia (Donnie Yen) hears this, he offers to help the police catch the killer, in return for his freedom. kungfu jungle2However, the canny and lethal killer eludes them again and again. Although the latter made it quite clear that Xia would be his ultimate challenge, Xia refuses to be drawn into the life and death duel – until the killer threatens the women he loves most.

Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Viewer Rating: 4.5/5 ****

Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Review:

If there’s any film that can be on par with Donnie Yen’s Ip Man, I think it will be Kungfu Jungle. When we talk about martial arts, it would often be period movies. Even in Donnie Yen’s previous movie (Iceman 3D), he came from the Ming Dynasty to the present world. But in Kungfu Jungle, the script writer managed to combine the various forms of Chinese martial arts into a pretty decent storyline and it doesn’t feel odd at all!

kungfu jungle 17So if you are wondering what are the highlights of the film, and if you’ve watched Donnie Yen’s Ip Man and remember his classic one versus ten men fight, you will probably want to watch the Kungfu Jungle and witness his one versus seventeen men this time. He’s fighting against a bunch of prisoners this time round, in order to get the attention of the lead inspector.

kungfu jungle loveIn terms of love, be it (Donnie Yen) Xia’s love for his junior or (Wang Bao Qiang) Fung’s love for his wife, they were rather subtle.It’s rather ironic given that the two martial arts experts had used the “power of love” to push their skills to the extreme. Xia did not exactly expressed his love through expressions, and it is easily mistaken as poor acting skills. But me being biased, will rather take it as an awkwardness of an boarish man who is not good with his words and actions.

kungfu jungle wang baoqiangIn comparison to Donnie Yen’s semi-cool and controlled behaviour, Fung was someone who was bold in showing his emotions. His love for his wife was shown in a very unique way – performing martial arts while she chants the mantra for him. It was a very scary thing to watch him move from one expert to another, and very sadistic to watch the way he killed them. I was cringing half of the time watching his amazing but cruel fight scenes.

kungfu jungle donnie yenBesides the great fighting scenes and the fantastic cast, this movie is not without surprises. I was impressed how the film managed to capture the duo personality of Xie (Donnie Yen), his fiery and ambitious nature through his fight scenes; his calm, loving and nurturing personality in jail (by using his skills to help the elderly with their ailments), and towards his junior. It’s almost like the Yin and Yang side of him!

donnie yen kungfu jungleWith elements of martial arts, crime, thriller, suspense and special effects, Kungfu Jungle is an almost perfect story, if not for the little bone found. Xia used this particular formula (先练拳次练腿,后擒拿用兵器,由内而外) to solve the case and find the next victim. It roughly translates to “Start with punches, then the legs, then practise grappling and weapons, start from inner to outer). At the very last part, they missed out on the last martial arts expert’s area of expertise!

donnie yen wang baoqiangBefore I end of my review, I thought I will just mentioned this point for everyone to spot, the part where the duellers salute to each other by having one hand on top of the other clenched fist. I was told that in Chinese martial arts, there’s a saying “Right is war, left is peace”, when the characters have their left hand on top of their right clenched fist (during the salute), it means to fight till death, while the latter means respect or to have a peaceful fight exchange. I couldn’t really find anything on google that explains this, so it will be pretty cool if you can try to spot the various exchanges in the film to see if it’s true!

Do You Know?

Kung-Fu-KillerKung Fu Jungle was previously known as Kung Fu Killer and Last of the Best.

wang bao qiang kungfu jungleWang Baoqiang was known for his comedian roles and not many people know about his Shaolin Kungfu background. His previous fighting role was Iceman 3D (冰封:重生之门) with Donnie Yen. He is also currently one of the participants in the China version of Running Man (奔跑吧兄弟).

kungfu jungle fightThe two main lead of the film has been labelled as the Universe’s strongest Donnie Yen meets the Galaxy’s strongest Wang Bao Qiang.

kungfu jungle1The film was made as a tribute to the various martial arts experts and veterans in the Hong Kong action movies. They’ve either appeared as cameo or in some form of subtle placement as little details in the background.
For example, Jackie Chan appeared by having footages of one of his early films Drunken Master (1978) shown on TV in the movie.
Director Kirk Wong of Crime Story (1993) appeared as a small-time communications officer.
Car stunts expert Bruce Law took up the role of a noisy truck driver
Veteran kungfu star David Chiang, Golden Harvest founder Raymond Chow and action choreographer Tony Leung Siu-hung also showed up in different scenes.

Behind The Scenes and Interviews

Check out Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林)IMDB Website.
Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) is out in cinemas on 30 October 2014.

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*Disclosure: Special thanks to Clover Films Singapore for the preview tickets. No monetary compensation was received for the movie review.

26 thoughts on “Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Review”

  1. Hello, just thought you should know you’ve been plagiarized there: japancinema dot net

    They’ve plagiarized me, and many others on this appalling website.

  2. Nice moves! But I’m not into action movies. I would watch it if I don’t have better things to do though. Nice review. 🙂

  3. Pingback: Kungfu Jungle (一个人的武林) Movie Review | Shareing Review of Movies

  4. My dear – reading your movie reviews have made me realised that it’s been over 20 years since my last Mandarin movie in a cinema! Oh dear, that makes me feel REALLY OLD 🙂

  5. Must See Movie! Dinnie Yen is One of the Best in making movies about Martial Arts and the like..More Power Donnie Yen!


    Best Donnie Yen film since Ip Man? Sounds like you didn’t see The Lost Bladesman. That,in my opinion for what it’s worth, is the best Donnie Yen film as both the story and action are good. Kung Fu Jungle’s story isn’t too good while the action is excellent. I mean it’s okay to go see a Donnie Yen film for the action as he always delivers, discounting the recent Iceman and Monkey King efforts. Kudos for Donnie including older actors of HK action movies in this one, that’s terrific in my book and worthy of applause. When I was watching it opening day here in Hong Kong as these actors appeared on the screen you could hear murmurs in the crowd as they were recognized.. Comparatively speaking, as far as action movies go though, your money’s better spent going to see Rurouni Kenshin Kyoto Inferno and The Legend Ends as the story, acting, action, and score are all good.. The finale of TLE is the best I’ve seen in quite some time. Eric Poling editor Hong Kong action movies.

  7. Actually the hand salute (one hand on top of another hand, always left on top of right) means one chinese character, 明, the sun (left) and moon (right). It was a hand signal used during the Qing dynasty when the Hans plotted the overthrowing of the Manchurian government.

  8. I have seen several movies that this guy was with, though i can’t remember the titles, he’s a good martial artist, as a movie addict myself would definitely watch this

  9. Oh! this movie is cool! This is me and my dad’s kind of thing. We love watching kung fu movies! 🙂 I’ll tell him about this. Thanks for your review, Tiffany! 🙂

  10. I like how they paid tribute to the martial arts veterans, showing how the respect and recognize their contributions. I’m looking forward to this movie and checking out those fist/hand salute to confirm your info. 🙂

  11. I like watching martial arts as a whole, they are beautiful to watch, there is some load of energy and power in them, whereas other action movies where the characters just shoot at each other with various guns do not impress me much. So I think Kungfu Jungle Movie is definitely for me!

  12. Lakwatserong Unggoy

    I will definitely watch this movie! I am a big fan of Donnie Yen. I even take the photo opportunity of him in Madame Taussads in Hong Kong. I admire his Kung Fu skills and how all his movie went well. Thanks for this great review.!

  13. Your rating of 4.5 is close to perfection and I bet many Kung Fu movies’ enthusiasts will enjoy watching Kung Fu Jungle. My hubby and kids will surely like this.

  14. I am always amazed with the choreography of the kung fu moves. Whenever I wach a Jacky Chan movie, I look forward to the credits because they always show the bloopers. These sequences are not easy to film. -katrina centeno

  15. I am a Donnie Yen fan after I watched “Ip Man”. Very cool actor and martial artist! Thanks for letting me know about this new movie of his, and with such a high rating!!! Very excited to see it if it gets to our movie screens here (I hope they do). – Fred

  16. A comedian that’s got shaolin kung fu skills up his sleeve? Lethal!

    I’ve had my own share of memorable Kung Fu movies, though I have to admit, they’re more “hollywood-y” in nature. I started with Kung Fu kids when I was, well, a kid in the 80s. I remember laughing so hard. Then they showed the Drunken Master again and I watched that with my folks, too!

    Anyway, I haven’t watched too many Kung Fu movies lately, I think the latest I’ve watched was Hero, I’ll be on a lookout for this one with its different titles here in the Philippines.:)

  17. It is a movie that I will enjoy watching. Right now, I already look forward to the fight scenes – something that I’ve always been interested in. I’ve come to appreciate Asian films because I think, we have a lot of talented people who do the screenplay.

  18. My mom & dad are a fan of Kung Fu movies and I have strong feeling, based on your description, that they’d like this movie. However, I don’t think this will be shown here in the Philippines or legal records of this film would be sold in malls. 🙁

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