Kung Fu Yoga review by Bobby Blakey
As a martial artist and a movie lover I have loved Jackie Chan as long as I can remember. Sure not every film he has done is a masterpiece, but they never fail to offer up fun and/or great action. When I saw the trailer to his latest collaboration with director Stanley Tong, Kung Fu Yoga, I was a bit let down as it just looked way too silly, but does it have something more to it or will it be a pose not worth holding?
Kung Fu Yoga follows Chinese archeology professor Jack who teams up with beautiful Indian professor Ashmita and assistant Kyra to locate lost Magadha treasure. In a Tibetan ice cave, they find the remains of the royal army that had vanished together with the treasure, only to be ambushed by Randall, the descendent of a rebel army leader. When they free themselves, their next stop is Dubai where a diamond from the ice cave is to be auctioned. After a series of double-crosses and revelations about their past, Jack and his team travel to a mountain temple in India, using the diamond as a key to unlock the real treasure. This Chinese-Indian co-production features a diverse cast from both countries alongside Chan including Disha Patani, Amyra Dastur, Aarif Rahman, Sonu Sood, and Eric Tsang. I am happy to say that despite not having high hopes for this film I came out on the other side really having a lot of fun and enjoying it quite a bit.
This is a pretty silly flick, but it has a lot of the same tones to some of Chan’s earlier films like Rumble in the Bronx, Armour of the Gods aka Operation: Condor and Police Story 3: Supercop which were also directed by Tong. There is a lot of fun action and over the top adventure that helped to make Chan the superstar he is today. While the fighting isn’t as intense as some of the earlier films it is still plentiful and perfectly executed. Everything about this film reminded me of those old action adventure films of Chan’s right down to the silly acting moments. If there was any issue with the film it was with the amount of CGI used. There is a really fun segment involving a Lion that works but it is pretty clear that it is CGI along with another involving hyenas. These are mild issues in comparison to the overall film as a whole.
In the end this film won’t work for everyone, but felt more like vintage Chan to me and I really had a great time with it. Instead of the usual montage of stunts and action gone wrong they ended it perfectly with Chan and the rest of the cast and crew in a full on Indian dance production that was fun to watch and looked like they were all having a great time. If you are a fan of the Chan, especially his older stuff then give Kung Fu Yoga a shot.
In addition to the film this release also includes bloopers, trailer, and numerous featurettes that take you behind the bringing these two worlds together. Grab your copy of Kung Fu Yoga available now on Digital HD and then on Blu-ray and DVD on August 8th from Well Go USA.