Running Time: 1 hr. 53 min.
Release Date: April 18th, 2008 (wide)
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sequences of martial arts action and some violence.
Director: Rob Minkoff
JJ Rating: B+
The Monkey King is defeated in an unfair manner by the Jade Warlord (Collin Chou) and is trapped. Someone has the ability to release him from his prison and that someone is Jason Tripitikas (Michael Angarano) of a different time far in the future. Jason ends up grabbing something that belongs to the Monkey King and takes a trip back in time. With the help from Lu Yan (Jackie Chan), the Silent Monk (Jet Li) and Sparrow (Liu Yifei) Jason has to get to the Monkey King and bring him back after years of imprisonment. Forbidden Kingdom.
I did not like the beginning or the end with the 'bully' character. It was cheesy acting and it really took away from the overall film. I thought the guy that was the bully sucked as an actor and that he was only picked because of his ability to kick above a four year old's head. Over all lame and made me mad because I liked the rest of the film. Michael Angarano was a non-issue with the bad acting. He was the good actor, along with Jackie Chan in the beginning. That's why the problem doesn't persist throughout the film.
This movie is a want-see because people want to see Jackie Chan vs Jet Li and that's what they get. The battle between these two last a good while and is entertaining and worth seeing. I'm not someone that watches martial arts a lot, I am entertained by it and that's why I can be simply fascinated by things that are done, so I might not be the best to dictate if the fight was awesome-cool for anyone but myself; but it was awesome-cool. It wasn't too short, boring, bland, lack creativity or stupid; it was everything that is opposite of that. I give my approval.
Jet Li and Jackie Chan have great chemistry together and it was fun to watch them interact. Add Michael Angarano and you have a great cast for the majority of the movie. They played well off of one another and even found time to add a bit of heart in there. With Liu Yifei as one of the only females in the film she gave her own touch to the film, which was grace and beauty. She is pretty-pretty and plays her role powerful and sure. The baddy is played by Collin Chou and he, not only has an interesting first name, was mean. Good actor because I wanted him to just go some place where his life would melt and I could see it and sadness would not be a part of his dutiful goodbye. He was a fascinating bad guy.
The Forbidden Kingdom was a nice hybrid of funny and heart with, of course, action. But hybrids can only use two things and adding action would make it three and that presents a word difficulty. I'm limited in my extended vocabulary and do not know of a word that would describe three great things creating one other than Trinity, but I did use the word great, so Trinity would fail in that regard. I think Legends of Zelda used Trinity in its games. What was it? The tri-force or something like that. So fine, as I digress, The Forbidden Kingdom was a godly trinity of (as that makes it seem way too important and over the top) of funny, heart and action; but action was the bigger part. Which, of course, ruins the whole idea of trinity and equality that it should have; oh well.
As I was saying, there are funny parts, heart-filled parts and action sequences. I enjoyed the wit that was in the film that happened between the three main characters, all the males. They were funny and worked well together. The heart parts really didn't come into play until towards the end, and even though it was predictable as to what was going to happen it still worked well and tugged on my empathy strings. The action was fun and quick. The camera angels worked well and it was not too close or shaky. I was able to follow what was going on, who was hitting who and that is very important.
The Forbidden Kingdom was as entertaining as I expected it to be and I would go and see it again and I would even buy it when it does come out on DVD. I know I'm such a force of influence on people and their movie choices. Ha. I just will skip over the beginning and the end (not the tail end) because of the bad bully actor and enjoy all the good fighting, witty speak and humor. Ah The Forbidden Kingdom is a trifecta of movie enjoyment in all it's B+ glory.
1 of 4 movies I saw this weekend.