Starring: Wu Jing, Scott Adkins, Nan Yu, Kevin Lee
Director: Wu Jing
2015 | 90 Minutes
“I wasn’t thinking about killing people, but saving people, saving my comrades.” – Leng Feng
After Leng Feng’s (Wu Jing) marksmanship impresses his commanding officers he is moved to the Wolf Warriors unit. His first training mission with the Wolf Warriors is interrupted by an elite group of mercenaries led by Tomcat (Scott Adkins).
The obvious reason for me checking out Wolf Warrior was Scott Adkins. I wasn’t familiar with Wu Jing but after watching Wolf Warrior, I’m glad to have finally “discovered” him.
Wu Jing is the star of Wolf Warrior in every way possible. It feels like the sole purpose of the movie is to put him over as the next action star. Mission accomplished. His martial arts, knife and gun play are top notch. It never once felt like he couldn’t hold his own in his fight/s against the great Scott Adkins. It’s really hard to gauge his acting ability when I can’t speak Mandarin though. From what I can tell he seems perfectly fine for this genre.
Scott Adkins has played plenty of fun baddies and anti-heroes. Tomcat isn’t his best but it isn’t his fault. He only has a handful of lines in the entire movie. I think the movie could have benefitted from him getting the chance to chew some scenery a bit more but it is what it is. Wu Jing was looking to put himself (and China) over and making Scott Adkins a bigger star of the movie probably wouldn’t have helped their cause.
With Wu Jing and Scott Adkins (along with a host of other Wolf Warrior soldiers and international mercenaries facing off all throughout the movie, it’s really a pretty fun time. The martial arts is fantastic but what really surprised me was how much I enjoyed the well thought out military style action. I wouldn’t say it is realistic but once in a while it feels like the Wolf Warriors or mercenaries are using something akin to real life military tactics.
With the focus being squarely on the action, the story DEFINITELY takes a back seat. It’s basically one short mission to show us how much of a badass Leng Feng is, he moves to the Wolf Warriors, one training mission, then the rest of the movie is Wolf Warriors chasing down the mercenaries. I’m not even 100% I could tell you why the mercenaries were attacking the Wolf Warriors to begin with. It seemed like it would have been smarter for them to just sneak out of China with their biological weapon. I very well could have missed something but I’m pretty certain this was barely explained, if at all.
Some really poor CGI is used in a couple spots, most notably a bizarre fight between a group of Wolf Warriors and a pack of CGI wolves. The whole scene feels like it didn’t belong and had zero purpose. The only thing it did was give reviewers another thing to knock them on.
Crazy bad CGI aside, I found Wolf Warrior to be really entertaining. So much so that I have found myself wanting to watch it or another foreign action / martial arts movie again soon. It probably could have been better but it’s certainly worth a watch for any action movie fans out there.