Zhang Yimou’s The Great Wall had one hell of a roller coaster ride these past few months over the casting of a strong, white male lead actorin a movie that takes in ancient China, filled with Chinese supporting roles played by legit Chinese actors.
So a movie about a white male actor in the front seat about the origins of The Great Wall of China, and it was directed by a Chinese? Things did not go well at all.
I came in the movie house with absolutely no expectations what-so-ever and I was treated to a pleasant surprise!
Here are 5 Things to know about the movie: The Great Wall.
Matt Damon and Pedro Pascual are mercs who are in China to find and loot the country’s greatest invention: gunpowder. A lot of people thought the two actors will somehow be taking in the role of Chinese characters; they didn’t.
So what is the real reason why the Great Wall was built? To ward off against foreign enemies? Sure. Mongolians? Nope. Monsters? Bingo. Reptilian monsters called Tao Tei to be exact. They attack the Great Wall every 60 years. Why? Watch the film.
Another white actor makes his way in a Chinese-populated movie, his name? Willem Dafoe. His actor has an integral part of the story, but in my opinion, the actor is only here mainly to attract western viewers.
In this movie, there is no damsel in distress, only badass spear-wielding women under those bright-blue armor. Commander Lin Mei (Tian Jing) is the most badass of them all, proving the women don’t need to rely on men for help, nor is she a pathetic love interest.
Deep Storytelling? Nope, but…
I’d give the storytelling a 5/10, mainly because it’s something you’d see in any typical action film, like The Avengers, but the movie is very, very, enjoyable! Every scene with Pedro Pascual is a winner with a bit of comic-relief on the side. Fans of Starcraft would like this tease with all the swarm of Zergs rushing in controlled by the queen.
Overall, I’d recommend everyone to watch this movie if you need a palette cleanser from all the deep, critical, mind-boggling, woah-amazing, Oscar-worthy films. This is a movie that you don’t need to put much thought in to it. Just watch, suspend your disbelief and enjoy the show.