THE most successful Hong Kong martial arts film franchise of the decade is back, and the last episode entitled `“Ip Man 4: The Finale” is now playing in cinemas nationwide.
Donnie Yen, the winner of The BrandLaureate International Brand Personality Award 2013, talks about playing the legendary character:
“It’s been 12 years since Raymond first asked me to make Ip Man. Over those years, we’ve developed a strong relationship with the character and gave him a very well-rounded story,
“This is quite a rare thing these days in film-making!”
“The modesty that defines good martial arts in the Ip Man franchise is also a principal virtue of the films” he added.
While Yen said it was sad to leave the character, he feels they have given him the best and most conclusive story arc possible.
In “Ip Man 4: The Finale” Yen returns to his signature role in the film, as the kung fu master who gave America a kicking by taking on racist bullies in the US Marine Corps.
Directed by Wilson Yip, the film began production in April 2018 and ended in July the same year. The 105 mins also featured Donnie Yen’s famous student Bruce Lee (Danny Kwok-Kwan Chan) in a fight scene set in San Francisco in the 60s.
Introduced in 2008, the Ip Man series are Hong Kong biographical martial arts films based on the life of Ip Man, a grandmaster of the martial art Wing Chun and teacher of Bruce Lee.
The films focus on events in Ip’s life that supposedly took place in the city of Foshan during the Sino-Japanese War.
All four main films (Ip Man 1,2,3,4) are directed by Wilson Yip, written by Edmond Wong, produced by Raymond Wong and star Donnie Yen.
Each film has a unique theme. The first Ip Man was about “Survival”, Ip Man 2 focuses on “Making a Living and Adaptation”, Ip Man 3 focuses on “Life” and Ip Man 4 is about the “Fight against Bigotry and Racism.”
The films deserve a place amongst the very best, of not only contemporary martial arts movies, but martial arts movies of all time.
Indeed Ip Man will be sorely missed as he walked into the sunset on a heartfelt note.