Here’s the first footage from Keanu Reeves‘ directorial debut, Man of Tai Chi, and it isn’t quite what I expected to see. This is a fight film through and through, which we knew to expect, but one that seems to have more in common with a film like Bloodsport than the fight-heavy films Reeves is known for as an actor. Which is to say, this isn’t quite The Matrix.
Tiger Hu Chen (Kung Fu Hero) plays a martial artist who seems to be drawn into some sort of organized fighting competition by Reeves, whose aim is really to break down a trained human fighter into a killer. The film also features Karen Mok (Shaolin Soccer) and Iko Uwais (The Raid, and who you won’t see in this teaser), with fight choreography by Yuen Wo-Ping.
Some of the dialogue here is not subtitled, so there are a few story beats that might not be clear. But Reeves’ insistent tagline at the end might be all too clear. Read More »
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Keanu Reeves has been in a couple of big martial arts influenced movies (those Matrix films come to mind, and there’s the delayed 47 Ronin) and now he’s directing his own. The film is called Man of Tai Chi, and features Reeves as the villain, with Tiger Hu Chen (who worked in the Matrix stunt team) as the hero. The movie also features Karen Mok (So Close), Simon Yam (Ip Man 1 & 2) and Iko Uwais (The Raid), with the rather famous and very skilled Yuen Woo Ping (The Matrix, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon) as the action director.
Man of Tai Chi will make its debut later this year, but in the meantime we’ve got the first images and a teaser poster. Read More »
A couple decades ago, and even today, the best way to shoot a complex martial-arts fight scene is the simplest: get good stuntmen, choreograph the hell out of the scene, and then set the camera back in such a way that it really captures their work, with the longest takes that make sense. Jackie Chan and some other classic Hong Kong filmmakers were great at this — their fights had power because the people had power, and the camera caught it.
Now we see a lot of quick editing, severe close-ups and takes stitched together with CGI. Which is fine, but doesn’t tend to have the same impact.
Keanu Reeves is now shooting his directorial debut Man of Tai Chi, and for some of the fights he’s using an advanced motion-control camera to blend classic technique with the sort of untethered, flying camera that audiences are used to seeing. Check out a video below. Read More »
For some time, Keanu Reeves has been talking about directing and acting in a film called Man of Tai Chi.
Now he has funding set up for the movie, thanks to money committed by Village Roadshow Pictures Asia, China Film Group, Wanda Media and Universal, which will distribute in the US. As he has said before, the film will shoot in Beijing, Hong Kong and Macau, with dialogue in Mandarin and English, and martial artist and actor Tiger Chen will star. Read More »
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Last year Keanu Reeves started talking about Man of Tai Chi, which would be his first feature project as a director. The martial arts film would be set in the present day, but is intended as an homage to classic kung-fu films. Now Mr. Reeves says he wants to play the villain in the film, which is gathering financing now. Read More »