Cast: Donnie Yen, Sammo Hung Kam-Bo, Siu-Wong Fan, Ka Tung Lam; Director: Wilson Yip; Producer: Raymond Wong; Screenwriter: Edmond Wong; Music: Kenji Kawai; Editor: Cheung Ka-Fai; Distributor: Innoform Media; Location: China; Running Time: 105 min;
Technical Assessment: 4
Moral Assessment: 3.5
CINEMA Rating: For viewers age 13 and below with parental guidance
Wushu (chinese martial arts) Grandmaster Ip Man (Donnie Yen) is highly regarded in Foshan for his passion, discipline and fighting skills. Other martial arts masters seek training under him that they can transfer to their students in martial arts schools which Foshan is known for. Ip Man belongs to a rich family who hardly says no to people asking for help including those who want to learn wushu from him which is to opposition of his wife. When the Japanese occupation comes to China, the people Foshan and the property of Ip Man are not spared. The people succumb to hunger and cruelty of Japanese soldiers claiming lives including friends of Ip Man. During this difficult situation, the Japanese officers witness Ip Man's fighting ability and think he can be an asset to them.
"Ip Man" is a well-crafted semi-biographic film with combined fictions for cinematic effects and actual facts about the life of Mr Yip Man, a known personality in the field of Chinese martial arts and the highly regarded teacher of world's famous late martial artist Bruce Lee. The film successfully makes the viewers admire Yip Man as a person. All the actors effectively delivered their portrayal of their characters especially Donnie as Ip Man. The treatment of the story including choreography of fighting scenes, friendship and siblings’ drama, and cinematic effects showing gruesome war are commendable. Lights, sounds, music, and overall production design have likewise contributed in making the film more interesting and entertaining for viewers.
The film conveys that as the saying goes like 'great power', possessing skills and talents like martial arts also come with great responsibility. Responsible people use them at the right time and opportunity. But this is not easy because most of the time there will be opportunity to challenge the person's ability and discipline. A person true to his principle and ability will find a way to continue beyond any circumstances. But over and above the cliche of the saying about great power, the film also shows that material things can perish but not the friendship and value of family. As a person who showed love for his family, friends, and country is rewarded by kind remembering of the good deeds and contribution to society. "Ip Man" is a film worth viewing, however due to some scenes showing brutal killings children age 13 and below should be accompanied by adult.