Wolf Warrior was a medium hit in the Far East but got mixed reviews, so it came as a great surprise that Wolf Warrior 2 also starring Wu Jing went on to be the biggest box office hit ever in China and was in the top 5 worldwide box office hits in 2017.
The simple synopsis of the film has China’s deadliest special forces operative (Wu Jing) settling into a quiet life on the sea. When sadistic mercenaries begin targeting nearby civilians, he must leave his newfound peace behind and return to his duties as a soldier and protector. The story also concerns the outbreak of a deadly disease which a Chinese doctor (Celina Jade) is attempting to find a cure.
While the plot is serviceable its the action that sets it apart and what fans come to see and in that respect, it succeeds admirably. Western audiences may be put off by the relentless Chinese jingoism on display, although, to be fair, it’s no different to such American movie characters as Rambo etc. Frank Grillo is good as the main villain of the piece and he is definitely one to keep an eye on after this and the excellent Beyond Skyline.
Full marks to Wu Jing for not only starring but also directing such a big budget action epic. He was known mainly for supporting roles in such films as SPL (Kill Zone) and lots of Chinese TV series but here proves he is capable of much more. The film is a tad overlong at 2 hours and you do get the feeling of overkill at times but it is definitely a movie all Action fans should see. Why this particular film became one of the all-time reigning box office champs in China and beyond is a mystery to me but fans will be very pleased that a post-credits sequence sets up the inevitable sequel, which, no surprise, will be entitled Wolf Warrior 3.
The film has been released on DVD and Blu Ray in the UK by Cine Asia and its great to see them back releasing the best of recent Action movies from the Far East. The picture quality on the Blu-ray is excellent, very sharp with great detail. The film was released in some territories in 3D but the 2D presentation does not lack anything and being shot on 6k cameras digitally is spotless apart from a few soft CGI moments. Audio is very in your face and does not let up, giving a full and satisfying surround sound experience. Extras are a few featurettes and a trailer.
Wu Jing has great screen charisma and after this massive breakthrough hit hopefully, we will see him return to making the Hong Kong style action films we all love.
FILM: 8 PICTURE: 8 AUDIO: 9 EXTRAS: 4 (Blu Ray)