Friday, 29 May 2015

Storm Warriors (2009)

For some reason the producers of Storm Riders never made a sequel, so it was not until the rights moved to another company ten years later that this film went into production.

If only the new producers had used some of that decade to work up a script that wasn't muddled and incoherent.

So I'm obviously not going to give this a good review but let's work our way through it and see where it all falls apart (spoilers: pretty much everywhere).

We begin with narration (ugh) which informs us that the evil Japanese warrior Lord Godless has used his evil Japanese ways to drug and then capture the Chinese emperor and China's greatest martial artists.  He gives the latter group the chance to serve him, but of course instead they burst their bonds and attack.

This results in a lot of dead Chinese martial artists, and me wondering why Godless bothered with all this sneaky sneaky stuff if he's so darn tough.  It's probably to show what an honourless cad he is, or something like that.  The upshot is that only a few martial artists escape: these are a man called "Nameless", who is badly wounded; the protagonists of the first film, Wind and Cloud; and a chap named Piggy King.

The group decides that they will seek out Piggy King's brother, Lord Wicked, for help.  Unfortunately this doesn't work out.  You see, Lord Wicked succumbed to Evil at some point in the past.  To atone, and to ensure he never kills another innocent, he chopped off his own arms.

Diversion: seriously parents of these characters, what is with the names you chose?  I mean, Piggy King is bad enough - you pretty much ensure he's going to be a lecherous, gluttonous slob.  But what do you expect to happen when you name your kid Wicked?  You may as well name him Murdering Jerkface.


Lord Wicked proposes that Wind - whom he judges to be the more controlled than the impulsive Cloud - undergo the Evil Training (capital letters and all) as this is the only way to quickly amass the power to defeat Godless.  Presumably Wind will then become a Sith.  Or the mythical Chinese equivalent of one anyway.  Cloud meanwhile goes to study with Nameless.

And there's a lot of fighting.  Cloud fights minions.  Wind fights minions.  Cloud fights Godless.  Wind goes all goth (he really is a Sith!) and fights Cloud.  Then he fights Godless.  Then Cloud and Wind put aside their differences and both fight Godless.  Then two other guys fight over the mystical artefact that keeps China safe and accidentally break it in the process.  You'd think this is something that would be a big deal, but it will never be mentioned again because now Wind and Cloud need to fight each other again.

So they fight.  And fight.  And fight.  And fight.  And oh god movie just end already!

And then it finally does.

To steal from MacBeth, this film is "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

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