Ip Man ★★★½

Donnie Yen is fantastic in the title role, with a natural and charismatic gravitas, even when the screenplay sometimes forces Ip Man into inscrutable choices and never bothers to clear up his motivations. Like all good kung fu movies that pretend to be about history, it has a fantastic series of fight scenes that culminate in some very stirring, emotional bouts (which are almost certainly ahistorical).

Directed by Wilson Yip, Ip Man didn't jump out at me as a remarkably special movie, and seemed to take a kind of half-ass approach to background details, but it was far more interesting and entertaining (if not really educational) than the only other Ip Man biopic I've seen, Wong Kar-Wai's shambolic The Grandmaster.

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