The Great Wall

The Great Wall (2016)

My Score

In “The Great Wall”
European mercenaries are searching for black powder and become embroiled in the defense of the Great Wall of China against a horde of monstrous creatures.

Genre : Fantasy
Country : USA/China

Cast :
Matt Damon : William
Tian Jing : Lin Mae
Pedro Pascal : Tovar

Director :
Yimou Zhang

My opinion about “The great wall”

“The last time I saw you, you left me for dead.
The time before that I saved your life! “

From time to time me as film buff yearns for a brainless fantasy movie. No need to pay attention because of ingeniously crafted intrigues and ingeniously interwoven stories. The nonsense level of “The Great Wall” is unbelievably high. And at some moments, the action scenes are so exaggerated that I’m sure even the Tao Tie rolled with their eyes. Everyone knows the Chinese Wall served a completely different function. The fact that it’s being used as a defense against a completely different threat, makes the story more original. I bet they’ve sought inspiration in Chinese fables or saga.

"The Great Wall" with Tian Jing, Matt Damon, Andy Lau and Cheney Chen

I must say, the used images were impressive

Asking Matt Damon to play the leading role, obviously would lead to critical reviews where words like “commercial objective” and “pursuit of profit” are used. Apparently the makers were sure of their case, because the budget for this movie was around $ 135 million. I bet they haven’t spent much of it on the script writers. But looking at the impressive images with tight choreographed colorful Chinese armies fighting against hordes of green monsters, you know immediatly which department absorbed the largest part of the budget.

The props and costume department most probably costed a fortune. Not to mention the used CGI. When the first attack wave commenced, it felt as if I was watching the Chinese version of “The Lord of the Rings“. It resembled the attack on Helms Deep a lot. Or was it something like that particular scene in “World War Z” with those zombies climbing up the walls of Jerusalem?

 "The Great Wall"

Let’s eliminate those green buggers

This movie isn’t about the construction of the Chinese Wall and isn’t based on historical facts. It’s about William Garin (Matt Damon) and Pero Tovar (Pedro Pascal) who, during their search for a revolutionary black powder, unintentionally get involved in a battle between Chinese forces and mythological creatures which are trying to conquer China already for many years (and after that the whole world). Initially, the two mercenaries are looked at as prisoners only by the Chinese commanders. However, when they get a demonstration of the fighting techniques William and Tovar master (many years of experience after fighting in different wars), the two shrewd fighters are being recruited and they join the battle against those bloodthirsty, lizard-like monsters.

"The Great Wall"

Tian Jing, ravishing and at the same time a tough lady

Casting a well-known Hollywood actor like Matt Damon, assures that a wider film audience is being reached. Another well-known face shows up after a while, namely Willem Dafoe. He’s solely needed to explain why the Chinese commanders speak fluently English. In other words, a negligible role. The rest of the cast only consists of Chinese actors. And there are even a few playing an interesting role. Especially Hanyu Zhang and Andy Lau stood out. For me Tian Jing as commander Lin Mae was an enjoyment to watch. And not only because she’s an extremely beautiful oriental femme fatale. Fortunately, they avoided to give it a romantic twist. No idyllic scenes with this beautiful Chinese fury and the brave hero.

 

"The Great Wall"

A bit ridiculous and enjoyable at the same time

The Great Wall” focuses on the action and the immense combat scenes. When you consider this, the film is never boring. And the sometimes humorous dialogues between William and Tovar are also worth mentioning. When you look at the storyline, it all feels kind of ridiculous. And some scenes are utterly exaggerated. The moment Matt Damon slid down a chain, it wasn’t only absurd to watch. The used special effects were extremely bad as well. But above all, the heroic end was grossly exaggerated. All in all, it was less bad than the renowned critics write. “The Great Wall” is still a pleasant treat. Some critic wrote that the Tao Tie lacked some realism. I wonder what kind of movie this guy expected to see. In my view, there is always a lack of realism when it comes to a fantasy story. Then again, who am I?

My rating 6/10
Links : IMDB

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