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Wu Jing’s record-crushing Chinese-produced action-adventure – Wolf Warrior online movie – provides audiences loads of bang for their bucks.
Earlier this week, Wolf Warrior online movie 2 made a huge leap from smash hit to absolute phenomenon, becoming the top grossing movie released in its native land China (gained more than $500 million in just 12 days, and still counting). Like Sylvester Stallone before him, and John Wayne before Stallone, star Wu Jing (also director) has triumphantly fulfilled the crowd-pleasing potential of advancing militaristic action-adventure heroics with a heavy fuse of flag-waving patriotism. The big difference here is that the flag waved by Wu and others in this action extravaganza is that of the People’s Republic of China, and Wu’s brave Leng Feng is not a Green Beret, but rather a once and future member of his nation’s elite Wolf Warriors special ops unit.
Depending on their own political leanings, some Westerners will be either excited or enraged by the full-throated nationalism that penetrates Wolf Warrior online movie 2 , and by the movie’s irregular insistence that Chinese military forces are more resilient and trustworthy than those of any other nation (perhaps, U.S. Marines) when it comes to extracting its people from international hot spots. On another note, more apolitical audiences are likely to just enjoy the runaway train of action shots that Wu provides with his flimsy but practical plot, and dismiss all the jingoist chest-thumping as roughly related to John Rambo’s stated desire to face against the Vietnam War one more time – and, of course, win this time! – in “Rambo: First Blood Part II.”
At the beginning of Wolf Warrior online movie 2 , which Wu co-wrote with Dong Qun and Liu Yi, Feng does everything as a lone wolf, single-handedly sending off a group of pirates with an intention to attack a freighter in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar. Flashbacks helpfully explain that he’s working at a freelance security gig after being kicked out from his special ops unit (as well as serving three years in prison) for roughing up a ill-willed land developer who threatened the loved ones of a comrade who died during the 2015 Wolf Warrior full movie (also directed by and starred Wu).
Even so, Feng himself claims, “Once a Wolf Warrior, always a Wolf Warrior!”. Originally, he seems content to spend his time between jobs drinking and having fun in the port city of an unnamed African country, with only occasional thoughts about Long Xiaoyun (Yu Nan), his missing and presumed-dead former love interest, ever saddening his mood. But he just can’t help being the right man at the right time but in a wrong place.
When revolutionaries cut a bloody swath through the city, during an excitingly chaotic scene that comes across as equal parts Paul Greengrass and Jackie Chan, Feng depends on his expertise with martial arts and automatic weapons to lead innocents through the chaos and to the safety of the Chinese embassy. And when the commander of a Chinese battleship states he and his men are bound by international law not to do anything more than transport Chinese nationals and a few locals out of harm’s way, Feng is willing to become a one-man army for a rescue mission that brings him to a “Chinese-invested” hospital and a Chinese-financed factory complex that have been aimed at by devious mercenaries.
Wolf Warrior online movie 2 grants Wu the chance to signify greater charismatic wattage as an action-movie star than he did in the first Wolf Warrior full movie . (One could claim that he was far more sympathize in Soi Cheang’s 2015 “SPL 2: A Time for Consequences” – a.k.a. “Kill Zone 2” – but, let’s be fair here, that film has him as a bone-marrow donor to a leukemia-stricken young girl). Better still, he advances three decently varied styles of give-and-take with co-stars portraying Wu’s important allies: Celina Jade as a doctor seeking for a cure for a deadly infectious disease devastating the African nation; Wu Gang as a skilled Chinese army vet now in charge of security at the factory; and Hans Zhang as a second-generation army officer aimed to prove his valour under fire.
But the performances eventually serve as so much window dressing during the virtually continuous parade of rough stuff, ranging from hand-to-hand clash to an assault by armed drones to wittily choreographed tank battles, which Wu Jing has perceived in harmony with action directors Wai Leung Wong (“Operation Mekong”) and Sam Hargrave (“Atomic Blonde”). It would seem Wu paid attention to fans’ disappointment (and also movie critics) which complained that Feng’s climatic grudge-match with the head villain (Scott Adkins) in the first Wolf Warrior full movie was horribly short. Here, he brings us a satisfyingly extended one-on-one battle between Feng and Big Daddy (grumbling and scenery-chewing Frank Grillo), the sadistic leader of the mercenary gang.
Wu skillfully boosts the suspense during the final battle by effectively nailing it with, of all things, a supporting character’s impassioned rendition of “Amazing Grace.” It’s seemingly clever not to read any religious subtext into the director’s choice of the hymn – in this case, it’s used pretty much the same way Ennio Morricone’s nondenominational score was applied in Sergio Leone’s Spaghetti Westerns.
The epilogue of Wolf Warrior online movie 2 promises a forthcoming Wolf Warrior 3. Judging from the returns for this act at box offices in what promises to be an ongoing series, let’s assume that Wu and his producers were not simply just confident – they were absolutely prescient.