▲ “Walking into the theater to see RZA’s The Man With The Iron Fists the last adjective I expected to have on my mind walking out was “boring,” but that’s really what the film delivers. While the director wears his love of the kung-fu genre on his sleeve, the whole thing suffers from poor structure and character development, a lack of consistent tone, and an inability to commit to its own period.
All set in feudal China in a town called Jungle Village, RZA’s directorial debut has multiple stories working simultaneously, but the main connection between all of them is how haphazardly they are put together.”
▲ “Not only are all of these stories interwoven in an arbitrary way that prevents the audience from investing in what’s going on from scene to scene, the relationships and personalities of the characters are never actually explored. In fact, it’s even hard to say that the film has characters, as they’re more accurately described as “people tied to a plot.””
▲ “You want to laugh at the ridiculously cheesy dialogue, but it’s weird when it’s mixed in with the serious story of a warrior on a quest to avenge the death of his father. If it’s not purposeful spoof then it’s simply bad storytelling, and in this case I can’t tell the difference.”
▲ “While it’s not as though the movie has cars driving around in the background of scenes, RZA never seems to make any effort to show off the time period and none of the actors commit to being in a past world. This would honestly be ignorable if it weren’t for RZA’s voice-over narration throughout the film, which is told in a very modern [voice] and is peppered with words like “motherfuckers” that immediately remind the audience that it’s 2012 and they’re sitting in a theater. It’s the cherry on top that makes the entire 96-minute runtime thoroughly unengaging.”
For another critical review of the film that forefronts salient narrative criteria, see http://sco.lt/8xrSL3
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