Saturday, March 7, 2009

Review: Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun-Li

Film: Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun-Li
Rating: 1.5 out of 5
In a nutshell: incoherent, forgettable and cringeworthy

What the fuck was Kristin Kreuk thinking? Or for that matter, the rest of the cast?

Okay, I'll start with the good points. Some of the fighting scenes were well-choreographed.

Now, the bad points. And there are many. Oh so many.

Look at how horrible that blue dress is!

Chun-Li is a legend in video games, there is no doubt about that. She is the first female ever to appear in a fighting game, so you know she's pretty iconic. She's also very sexy. At first it might make sense to cast Kristin Kreuk into that role. Well-known, beautiful and looks vaguely Asian.

Then they had to mess it all up. It's soon evident that Kreuk is terribly miscast into this shambles of a movie. Lacking passion, she gives a performance worth a bag of rotten tomatoes. In what was supposed to be a sexy girl-on-girl dance scene she lacks any beauty, grace or sexiness to even keep your eye on the screen. In the serious scenes (usually when one of her loved ones dies) her tears made me felt like laughing. She was that unconvincing.

Taboo as Vega? Really? Did you have to? The one scene he is supposed to make a big splash and he fails it, miserably. Michael Clarke Duncan, horrible. Robin Shou, laughable. Neal McDonough, terrible. Moon Bloodgood and Chris Klein, no chemistry at all.

There goes your career, Mr. Clarke Duncan.

The first half an hour tries to evoke sympathy for Chun-Li, showing how hard her life is supposed to be. Yet it's hard to feel sympathetic for two-dimensional characters who speak utterly inane and cliched dialogue.

"Legend Of Chun-Li" doesn't know what it wants to be. Does it want to be an action film? As I said, only a few fight scenes were worth mentioning. The others are dull and uninteresting. Does it want to be a drama? There's no drama if you can't evoke any emotion from the audience. Does it want to be realistic or over-the-top? You can't have it both.

I wouldn't really care that it's genre-indecisive if the dialogue wasn't so badly-written. Bad cliches from bad kung fu movies will still be bad in a Street Fighter movie. There's virtually no memorable lines from the whole film.

There's virtually no character development. Attempts to establish some kind of relationship between characters (especially between Nash and Maya) ultimately fail. It's all terribly black and white. There are the good guys, and there are the bad guys. They fight. The good guys find the bad guy's weakness. The bad guy is killed, happily ever after. It's neither plot-driven or character-driven. Heck it's not even action-driven.

It's only 1 hour 30 minutes long, but that's for me long enough to make me want to blind myself with a hot piece of metal. I wanted this film to end by the first half an hour. But I stayed, thinking it might get better. But no, it didn't. In fact, it became worse.

It's so bad I wanted Jean Claude Van Damme to be in it. At least that film (the 1994-released "Street Fighter") - however horrible it was - had the guts to completely go over the top and bring lots and lots of our favourite characters onscreen. And Bison actually looked badass. Cammy was there. Woo hoo. At least that one had a few ounces of fun. "The Legend Of Chun-Li" is neither fun nor thought-provoking.

Signing out

Over and out

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