Metascore
53

Mixed or average reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 10
  2. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: Rachel Saltz
    Sep 8, 2011
    70
    If the movie feels old-school (with new-school production values), consider its pedigree. It's no wonder: Shaolin is a reimagining of the 1982 "Shaolin Temple," in which Jet Li made his debut.
  2. Reviewed by: Marc Savlov
    Sep 8, 2011
    67
    Director Benny Chan has fashioned a visually sumptuous period wushu film with a strikingly contemplative and pacifist bent.
  3. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Sep 9, 2011
    60
    Shaolin is simultaneously regal and stilted, stirring and sluggish.
  4. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Sep 9, 2011
    60
    Jackie Chan's cameo as a monastery cook is a tiny joy. To see Chan use his once-great physical skill on a hunk of bread dough is to see a giant work in miniature.
  5. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Sep 6, 2011
    60
    Fists fly furiously and much blood is spilled; there's a sacrifice via sword that's both cringe-inducing and cheerworthy. Even special guest star Jackie Chan gets in on the fun with a hilarious bit of food-jitsu. It's almost enough to make you forget that this entertainingly hollow film is populated entirely with toy soldiers.
  6. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Sep 9, 2011
    50
    This new movie features stylishly filmed and choreographed battles. But in between the set pieces is a lot of sentimental blather that slows down the film. More action, less talk should be the order of the day, but it isn't.
  7. Reviewed by: Maggie Lee
    Sep 6, 2011
    50
    Directed with feeling for its richly layered protagonists, the film is elevated by its emotional complexity but simultaneously dragged down by the relative shortage of propulsive, hardcore action.
  8. Reviewed by: Andrew Schenker
    Sep 6, 2011
    50
    Only Jackie Chan, in a comedic supporting role as a Zen-trained cook who applies his culinary techniques on the battlefield (he "stir-fries" one enemy in a giant pot and "kneads" another like dough), provides any measure of relief.
  9. Reviewed by: Russell Edwards
    Sep 6, 2011
    50
    Well-mounted Chinese-Hong Kong martial-arts co-production Shaolin elevates enlightenment above brute strength, but weak helming undercuts the pic's punch.
  10. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Sep 6, 2011
    30
    This crude, overlong chunk of kung-fu kitsch lays its scene in a 1920s Republican China, torn by internecine fighting and weighed down by drably expensive production design.
User Score
7.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Sep 12, 2011
    7
    Rent-it - This film about feuding warlords and Shaolin monks is more of an epic drama than an kung-fu action-adventure, but the handful of hand-to-hand fight scenes are spectacular and the big-budget cinematography is quite handsome. It's no 13 Assassins though. Full Review »
  2. Sep 9, 2011
    7
    Benny Chan's Shaolin is a solid film for those seeking a good martial arts drama. The film is not as action-packed as some may hope but there's enough fighting to appease the majority while Andy Lau and Nicholas Tse deftly portray the battle of forgiveness in the face of ruthless betrayal. While the pacing falters at times and some of the characters could have used some more depth, the film is still quite enjoyable and well worth seeing if you get the opportunity during its theatrical release. Full Review »