Coming to Blu-ray from Well Go USA and director Wilson Yip is the spectacular collection of films with Donnie Yen returning in the “IP Man Trilogy.”
In “IP Man,” it is 1937 during the Sino-Japan war as Grandmaster Ip is put to work as a laborer in a factory. When the enemy uses him to fight in matches, no one can beat him. When Japanese Col. Miura (Hiroyuki Ikeuchi) decides he wants to fight Ip, it is that fight that has the villagers wanting to fight for their own freedom!
In “IP Man 2,” Master Ip opens his own martial arts studio in Hong Kong that is occupied by the British. Teaching his Wing Chun style of fighting it is Master Hung (Sammo Hung), another martial arts instructor who isn’t going to allow him to continue. Wanting Ip to prove he is a Kung Fu master, a “King of the Ring” match is set with Twister (Darren Shahlavi) in a match that will decide it all.
In the final film, “IP Man 3,” it is 1959 and gangsters are brutalizing the villagers and they are led by Frank (Mike Tyson) who is determined to take over everything. One of the properties owned by the brutal developer is the school Ip’s son attends. It is hard to handle the violence as Ip’s wife is very ill. Eventually, Master Ip must face Frank in the final match for the title of Wing Chun Grandmaster!
Donnie Yen as Ip has cemented his place in cinema history. He not only brought back an interest in the Wing Chun form of martial art but was recognized by Ip Chun (son of Ip Man) for portraying his father in the films. What might surprise most about Yen is that he comes from a family of martial artists. Yen’s mother, Bow-sim Mark, is a Tai Chi grandmaster in Fu Style Wudangquan and sister Chris is a martial artist/actress who was in the film “Adventures of Johnny Tao.”
Yen has also been involved in films doing choreography in “Highlander: Endgame” and “Blade II.” Continuing choreography it was in 2013 when Yen would get the male lead role of Silent Wolfe in “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.” Of course, it goes without saying that I can’t wait to see him in the Christmas release of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” to be followed by the 2017 film “XXX: Return of Xander Cage!”
Director Wilson Yip has collaborated on a total of five films with Donnie Yen and that’s basically because he’s awesome if we are being honest here. Yip began in 1995 with 01:00 A.M. leading up to one of my favorites with the 1998 film “Bio Zombie” and 2004’s “The White Dragon.” Four years later Yip began his history-making film “IP Man” in 2008, 2010 and five years later in 2015. I personally couldn’t be happier.
Well Go USA Entertainment is an amazing company that brings the best of Action and Independent films from around the world. Their format includes theaters, digital, cable and VOD along with Bluray. For more of what they have to offer go to www.wellgousa.com.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give “IP Man Trilogy” five tubs of popcorn out of five.
Yen is the reason for each of these films to be so successful because he has the absolute perfect demeanor to play this role. Displaying a calmness that is believable it is almost eerie.
This is a fantastic opportunity to revisit the Ip Man series again but also for those who never had the opportunity to see all three films. I personally would gather up friends and make it a marathon with a mixture of both groups. The crisp beauty of Bluray gives each and every moment the cherry on the cake waiting for Ip to kick it off!
The Blu-ray includes the Bonus Features: IP MAN Making Of, Deleted Scenes and Trailers; for IP MAN 2 is Making Of and Trailers and IP MAN 3 has Two Hours of Exclusive Interviews with Donnie Yen, Mike Tyson Jin Zhang and more!
In the end — the best martial arts trilogy of all time!