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Category:    Home > Reviews > Fantasy > Adventures > Swords > Battles > Comedy > Epic > China > Monkey King 2 (2016/Well Go USA Blu-ray)

Monkey King 2 (2016/Well Go USA Blu-ray)

Picture: B+ Sound: B+ Extras: C Film: C+

Sun Wukong, a.k.a. The Monkey King (Aaron Kwok), is charged by the Goddess Guanyin with protecting Xuanzang, the Holy Monk in his Journey to the West for the holy scriptures. He is joined with his brother in arms Bajie and Wujing, together they protect him from the demons who seek immortality from Xuanzang in Pou-Soi Cheang's The Monkey King 2 (2016).

Wukong is the naughty Monkey King, after 500 years of imprisonment he is given a chance by Buddha to redeem himself by escorting the pious Xuanzang in his holy journey. While Xuanzang is a pacifist and is knowledgeable, he lacks wisdom and foresight. Wukong on the other hand is far more shrew, cleaver and devious and is much more worldly than Xuanzang, but he lack patience and humility. Together Xuanang is constantly getting them into trouble and Wukong constantly is rescuing him, but zealous paranoia needs to learn to sometimes forgive others, though all must face the wrath of the White Bone Demon (international star Gong Li).

This was based on the ancient tale of Journey to the West, the film was an explosion of CGI and special effects eye candy. Certainly it seems like China is catching up on Hollywood's CGI animations, but it was a bit too much CGI and it made me wonder if the entire movie was done in a green room.

Despite that, the 1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image looks pretty good and colorful throughout, but I wonder how this will hold up a few years from now. The Cantonese Dolby Atmos 11.1 mix (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 core) likely will hold up better, with fine surrounds and even overhead dimensionality, plus we get a Mandarin DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix that is on par with the Dolby TrueHD 7.1. The mixdowns are not as good as the 11.1 and have some issues and limits. Extras include making of the film and trailers.

- Ricky Chiang


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