Chun-Li no legend

Nicholas Sparling
March 4, 2009
Filed under Reviews

In a brazen attempt to resurrect the all but forgotten “Street Fighter” franchise, they went out on a limb to make a new fresh movie, “The Legend of Chun-Li.” New film, new actors, new plot, new angle and a brand new way to disappoint and insult the fan base.
Prior to seeing the movie, I wondered if it would be based on the fantastic world of the video game or if it would try and follow suit with the recent fad of comic book movies by taking place in a realistic world.
The film follows the life of Chun-Li as she narrates. She is given a generic Kung Fu movie story line from her life as a child to her training to the face-off against Bison. Also the movie follows the story of Charlie Nash, a Keanu Reeves wannabe, and his hot female sidekick Detective Maya Sunee. They take on crime in the city run by Bison. The plot of the movie advances a bad joke. The fact that they could have chosen any character from the “Street Fighter” universe, and they chose Chun-Li showed bad judgment. For all the characters that they left out, they could have picked a much more interesting storyline.
After seeing the movie, I still can’t be sure what they were shooting for.
The movie only featured four characters from the “Street Fighter” universe, Chun-Li, Bison, Vega and Balrog; and none of the characters were clad in their outfits from the video game. With the realistic world setting sprinkled with fighting moves based in fantasy, the movie failed to pick a side and stick to it with any sense of consistency.
The cast consisted of mostly C-list actors, most of whom I have never heard of. The most note-worthy actor was Michael Clarke Duncan who was cast in the role of Balrog. His character also was considerably the most entertaining, with his deep cartoon villain laugh and one liners that were so ridiculous I couldn’t help but crack up every time he talked.
Vega played a pathetic part in the film. He only has one short fight with Chun-Li and is easily defeated. Even in the video game you can’t beat Vega the first time you fight him.
There is a scene with Bison where he is beating his woman, Cantana, for losing a fight with Chun-Li. Bison has her tied up and is just letting loose on her as he talks about her casually in the past tense, his white shirt is splattered with blood. Noteworthy scenes like this appeared out of place in this movie.
To add a degree of irony to the film, Chun-Li is cared for and taught fighting skills by Gen, played by actor Robin Shou who was Liu Kang in the “Mortal Kombat” movies.
This movie was a colossal disappointment filled with horrific dialogue and plot holes the size of the Grand Canyon. Go rent the original “Street Fighter.” Compared to this one, it is practically Oscar worthy.

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