The Great Wall
Released December 6th (China), February 17th (US)
1 hr 44 mins
Director: Zhang Yimou
Writers: Carlo Bernard, Doug Miro, Tony Gilroy (Screenplay); Max Brooks, Edward Zwick, Marshall Herskovitz (Story)
Matt Damon as William Garin
Jing Tian as Commander Lin Mae of the Crane Troop
Pedro Pascal as Pero Tovar
Willem Dafoe as Sir Ballard
Andy Lau as Wang, Strategist and War Counselor for the Nameless Order
Zhang Hanyu as Shao, Commander of the Bear Troop and General of the Nameless Order
Eddie Peng as Commander Wu of the Tiger Troop
Lu Han as Peng Yong, a warrior in the Bear Troop
Lin Gengxin as Commander Chen of the Eagle Troop
Chen Xuedong as Commander of the Imperial Guard
Huang Xuan as Commander of the Deer Troop
Wang Junkai as The Emperor
Ryan Zheng as Shen
Review by Stephen M.
It is kind of funny to think that the biggest complaint in Hollywood lately especially targeted this film is white washing. Replacing roles meant for Asians or other ethnicity with white actors or actresses for the purpose of appealing to a broader American audience. While this film doesn't have that specific problem, perhaps the great white hope in Matt Damon saving the Chinese. But no, the biggest problem with this film is the absurd plot.
It is tough to not talk about what is attacking the Great Wall, spoiling a big piece of the film when talking about the absurdity of the film. From the attackers to the defenses in place to how the Chinese and Matt Damon and friend fits in, it is just one big mess of hilarity. The shining grace for the film would have to be Pedro Pascal as Pero Tovar who plays as a comedic companion to Matt Damon's character.
Overall, I would not recommend watching the film in theaters though the film was made for the big screen with its grand Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings large scale battles. It is just not worth your hard earned money to waste or this movie that should have gone straight to DVD. The movie poorly utilizes some of the most amazing Chinese talent in China and Hong Kong such as Andy Lau. Not even all these talented actors and actresses could save a ridiculous sci fi re-imaging of Chinese history.
Rating: 2 out of 5 Stars