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Monday, April 6, 2015

White haired witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014)


Country: China
Format: movie
Genre: supernatural, action, romance
Cast: Fan Bingbing, Huang Xiaoming, Vincent Zhao, Wang Xuebing, Ni Dahong, Tong Yao, Li Xinru, Cecilia Yip, Yan Yikuan, John Do, Lai Xiaoshen
Synopsis: It is Ming Dynasty and the Imperial court is corrupted as tyrants are holding the power. War is imminent, as everybody are waiting to take on the weakened empire. Sorceress Jade Raksha from Lunar Kingdom is fighting against corrupted government official which makes her most wanted "criminal" by the government. Life brings her together with Zhou Yihang, new leader of Wudang martial arts who gets framed for killing governess. He who is able to melt Jade Raksha's frozen heart, but their love becomes on the edge of events when he finds out that the woman of his life is said to be the murderer of his grandfather.
Rating: 2/5
I watched it on a plane on a way back from Japan. I am really into supernatural things, but I must say that it was not what I expected, maybe it would have been better in 3D, because the quality of the movie on the plane was really really bad.

The main character, sorceress Jade Raksha (later Lian Nishang) is played by Fan Bingbing. Jade Raksha is not her name and at first she does not have name at all until she meets with Zhou Yihang who names her Lian Nishang meaning Silk Fairy. She is powerful woman who follows her great teachers words and in the end her steps. She is taught that love is the greatest poison and she mustn't fall in love with any man, because it will make her weak and will kill her. In this point I actually agree that true love can be one thing that breaks even the strongest women. I think this was one of my favorite scenes of the movie to see her change. In trailer it shows as if she transforms already in the start of the movie, but unfortunately it happens only in the end, which was really disappointing for me. Fan Bingbing is definitely the star of the movie, but many critics have marked "White haired witch of Lunar Kingdom" as Fan Bingbing's the worst movie. World-known actress can pull off much better movies than this one.

The hero from Wudang Zhuo Yihang is actually quite humble guy, who has honest intentions.
But he changes when he discovers that people he has trusted his whole life are not who they pretended to be all this time. For revenge he is willing to hurt people who are dear to him and hope that he is able to be on time to save them again. I actually would mark him as "usual man" - sees hot woman, sleeps with her and then goes to another woman who brings him closer to his goal. It is a "feminist joke about all men being pigs", so do not take it seriously. Anyway, he does not share his thoughts and plans even to his love and that causes misunderstanding as if he thinks that she would not approve his plan. I think this was stupid on him that he would rather break woman's heart than make her understand, even when it is also breaking his heart. But this is just my point of view. Zhuo Yihang is acted by Huang Xiaoming who is said to have a lot of chances to make himself look really cool.

There are more many characters whose name and connection to things kept unclear to me.
They have put way too many sidelines into the movie, which makes movie really difficult to understand. This movie is really difficult to follow.They do not concentrate so much on the love-line between the main characters and more on the special effects and stunts, which are actually really obvious and start to annoy you really fast.
It is loosely made after Liang Yusheng's classic novel "Baifa Monü Zhuan", on which also "The Bride with the white hair" and "The Romance of the white hair maiden" are based. I cannot say if those movies are better than this one, but if somebody sees all of them, then let me know.
I think you should really know the background of "Baifa Monõ Zhuan" and history of Ming Dynasty. As I am not so big fan of China as I am of Japan, then I admit that my ignorance can be standing in front of understanding the movie.
But on the bright side, despite not being "quality" movie it has been on few international film festivals, in addition in my own country! Though, my final thought of it is that the potential of the movie was left unused.

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