The Grandmaster Image
Metascore
72

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 60 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Aug 22, 2013
    100
    The Grandmaster is, at its most persuasive, about the triumph of style. When Ip Man slyly asks “What’s your style?” it’s clear that Mr. Wong is asking the same question because here, as in his other films, style isn’t reducible to ravishing surfaces; it’s an expression of meaning.
  2. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Aug 29, 2013
    88
    The Grandmaster sets aside traditional story structure in its last 15 minutes and becomes one of the filmmaker’s free-form visual poems, suffused with melancholy and compassion.
  3. Reviewed by: Clarence Tsui
    Feb 10, 2013
    80
    True to Wong’s style, The Grandmaster is infused with melancholy and a near-existentialist resignation to the uncertainties of fate.
  4. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Aug 22, 2013
    75
    Wong extracts magnetic performances from his two stars, and Philippe Le Sourd delivers gorgeous cinematography.
  5. Reviewed by: A.A. Dowd
    Aug 21, 2013
    67
    At the end of the day, the pesky imperative to convey information is still a driving force; more than anything Wong has ever made, the movie chokes on exposition, its more poetic concerns stifled by its surfeit of plot.
  6. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Aug 20, 2013
    63
    A regal, majestic and downright arty take on this teacher, champion and philosopher whose life spanned much of the twentieth century.
  7. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Aug 30, 2013
    40
    The end result feels like only half a movie. That half -- the technical half, with Wong's stylistic flourishes and the film's lush technical elements -- is a heck of a film. The rest of The Grandmaster, however -- the storytelling -- is anything but grand.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 24
  2. Negative: 7 out of 24
  1. Nov 28, 2013
    10
    There's no accounting for taste, I know, but the next-to-last scene between Tony Leung and ZiYi Zhang should be required for any actor. (I am a professional actor.) So much feeling and information passes between these two people without a hint of "selling"---doing nothing more than actually inhabiting the deepest feelings. It's a tour de force. Personally, I love the movie, but I can't imagine anyone walking away from such a scene and not being moved. It's hard to shake the feeling that a reviewer who called this stupid is not revealing more about themselves than they intended. Expand
  2. Aug 30, 2013
    10
    Definitely the best one among numerous martial arts films! This movie is more than Kung Fu. It is a sound story introducing a fundamental spirit of Chinese culture. Stronger on Kung Fu does not necessarily mean a stronger image. It is vision and breadth of mind. Expand
  3. Aug 27, 2013
    9
    It's an absolutely beautiful film beautifully shot, engaging story, and elegant action sequences. Ziyi Zhang is phenomenal in portraying her story of loyalty and commitment. I was enthralled throughout. Collapse
  4. Jan 17, 2014
    6
    It was OK.
    I felt like the story was somewhat disjointed. Some beautiful scenes and some great fight sequences. Felt like it was too
    protracted of a movie, and the plot itself was not really good in my honest opinion. In relation to the other Ip Man movies, I'd say this is the one I like the least. Expand
  5. Sep 9, 2013
    5
    I am a fan of Chinese Martial arts films such as "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", "House of Flying Daggers", and "Hero" so I went to see this film. While it was beautiful to look at, the story, what little there is, didn't hold my interest. It is crucial that the two leads have chemistry for this slow, plodding story to succeed, and I felt ZERO chemistry between them. I enjoyed the look and soundtrack of the film but never was engaged. Expand
  6. Apr 7, 2014
    3
    The fight scenes are good, as well as the directing in these particular scenes. I also enjoyed the soundtrack. The acting by the main cast is good enough.

    However, the directing in the rest of the scenes is a little annoying. Kar Wai Wong did the same thing in another movie i saw by him: My Blueberry Nights. Never understood it really.

    The story is a complete mess. I don't know who's story this is. It's also too slow-paced, stretched over 2 hours. So i was extremely bored. And i had a very hard time understanding what was happening. The movie is in Chinese; and since they talk really fast, the English subtitles disappear very quickly.

    So aside from the action sequences, and maybe the last few somewhat emotional scenes, where the two leads meet one last time, i didn't enjoy this film at all.
    Expand
  7. Dec 2, 2013
    1
    I just don't like this movie, the word that I would use to describe it is: Ridiculous.
    I can't place this movie anywhere, I don't know if it
    was supposed to be like it is, or if it is a failed attempt at something else, I didn't like it from start to end, it lacks everything, nothing really to be salvaged, even the action sequences looked... let's say, not good.

    I saw it when it came out so I don't remember how good it was in each category, but the movie genre says it is an:

    Action
    Like I said, didn't saw anything special about the action sequences, looked like implausible martial arts choreography.

    Biography
    Seriously? This is at least an insult to the viewer intelligence, claiming this to be even remotely biographical is criminal.

    Drama
    Pure boredom between bad martial arts action sequences.

    I can't see a reason to watch this movie, I can't see myself in any type of mood that would had allow me to enjoy this bad piece of cinema.
    Expand

See all 24 User Reviews