Fearless (2006) – Jet Li

7/10 — Not a bad movie, but I can’t find an English dubbed version. Some parts are in English but most is in Mandarin. English subtitles are easier to follow here than in most movies, since the speaking is rarely fast and there’s plenty of speechless action; but if you are easily able to pause, rewind and read the subtitles at your own pace, that will inevitably help you follow the story and enjoy the movie more. If I could find a good English dubbed version I’d rate it 7.5 but as it depends on subtitles I’ll give it a 7/10 for the inconvenience.

This movie is very loosely based on the true story of Huo YuanJia – so loosely that one of Huo YuanJia’s grandsons, Huo ShouJin, sued this movie’s producers & distributors in 2006 for misrepresenting & dishonouring his grandfather’s legacy. Maybe that’s got something to do with the lack of an English Dubbed version today.

The story follows a boy who wants to learn Kung Fu but his father was leading him away from it (true story). He grows up and becomes a famous fighter (true) but soon his family are killed (fiction). With nothing left to lose, Jet Li’s character loses himself in a remote farming village, and with the help of a friendly & loving community, his attitude improves. He then faces further tests which will go down in history (loosely based on true events).

It’s not a bad performance by Jet Li and some of the other actors such as Sun Li who plays the lead female role. Quite enjoyable if you don’t mind the subtitles. Some distressing parts though – borderline horror genre at times. Add to that some genuine life lessons on war vs peace, and pride vs humility. Combine this with a vast amount of epic kung fu from Jet Li and you arrive at a very respectable movie to enjoy one evening – it’s nearly two and a half hours long.