If you’re one of the few people watching Ip Man for the plot you may be disappointed, but it has some beautifully choreographed fight scenes.
Some of the pieces I found interesting, apart from the action scenes, were:
- The traitorous translator, who juggles intent between Japanese and Chinese speakers, converting what Chinese prisoners (including Ip Man) into something more palatable for the Japanese occupiers.
- There’s an interesting storyline that follows a factory-owner friend of Ip Man’s. It was interesting to see how the movie treated the factory owner – who else was going to give the workers jobs? I don’t know the ins and outs of how factory owners in general (or specifically in Foshan) fared during the Japanese occupation, but I imagine it was complex.
If you’ve seen Jet Li fight Nathan Jones in Fearless, this is familiar territory for you as a martial arts hero resurrects national pride with his fists, before unfair attacks from outside the ring bring him low. It still makes for decent TV.