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23 Reviews
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply outstanding
We've become so accustomed to martial arts being a sport here
in the United States that even a casual review of the Monks
DVD will reveal significant differences. In China, it is a way
of life. From youth through adulthood, one is immersed in the
training, breaths and lives the art. Neuromuscular control,
mental discipline, and absorbing the...
Published on February 11, 2002 by R. DONG

versus
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Remember this is theatre...
Apart from a defective soundtrack on the DVD (fluctuation in volume from loud to near silence), this was an interesting theatrical presentation. Unlike some of the reviewers, I have no martial arts background. So, I am unable to pick apart the representations of various forms. I am viewing this for what it is...theatre. If an individual is so interested as to actual...
Published on April 25, 2006 by Bluebonnet


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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply outstanding, February 11, 2002
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
We've become so accustomed to martial arts being a sport here
in the United States that even a casual review of the Monks
DVD will reveal significant differences. In China, it is a way
of life. From youth through adulthood, one is immersed in the
training, breaths and lives the art. Neuromuscular control,
mental discipline, and absorbing the philosophy of martial arts
is paramount. Only under this lifelong training and environment
does one achieve perfection. The Shaolin epitomizes this per-
fection in every sense.
If one is at all interested in the differences in style and
training between the Western world versus that of the China,
the first several minutes will leave you in awe. You'll be
left spellbound at the mastery of the art, the variations-on-
a-theme of the Chinese martial arts. You'll be left stunned.
When you've watched it all, you'll replay it for those moves
too fleeting to catch the first time around.
The only thing better is to watch them in person. You will
float out of the performance....transcended.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Amazing!, April 18, 2002
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
My gosh! Man these guys are good! This show is so good! This show captures these Shaolin monks at their best in a theatrical performance! For those of you who don't really know what this movie is about, it is a high quality video of a performance of Shaolin: Wheel of Life, a show put on in the West End of London in 2000 I believe. The producers of the show actually went to a Shaolin Temple in China and recruited 25 Shaolin monks to perform in this show, with the permission of the abby. They then proceded to put on this spectacular show full of martial arts at its best, great theatrical drama, and stunts that people would deem impossible. Absolutely amazing this is. I can't recommend it enough.
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5.0 out of 5 stars LOVING EVERY MINUTE OF IT, July 16, 2013
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This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
I LOVE THE HELL OUT OF THIS DVD. WISH I WAS LIKE EVERY ONE ELSE, BRUCE LEE REALITY SKILLS, CHUCK NORRIS KICKING, BLIND FURY FIGHTING , WILK CHAMBERLING STUDENT OF BRUCE LEE LIKE THESE BRAVE ONES. I ADMIRE THE TALENT AND BEING FROM THE STREETS OF CHICAGO AFTER 6PM, YOU NEED A WATCH BECAUSE ITS ALREADY TO LATE TO BE IN ANY HOOD WITHOUT THESE SKILLS. THE COBRA STONES, JACKSON EX A CU SIONERS, PEACE STONES NATION, TALOR VISE LORDS, THE VILLAGE DECIPLES, THE CABRINI GREENS, THE 15 STORIES, THE 16 STORIES, THE COUGARS, THE COMMANDOES, THE PURPLE STREET GANG. YOU NEED THESE SKILLS TO COMBAT AND CONQER THE ENEMY. GET THIS DVD NOW FROM A USMC VET IN 1971. SEMPER FI
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5.0 out of 5 stars Live theatre captured on film., September 13, 2012
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This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
"Shaolin Wheel of Life" is a taped stage performance. It blends kung fu, Western theatre and several elements of Chinese opera, VERY beautifully.

There are lots of demonstrations of forms and breaking woven into a storyline about an Emperor betraying the monks after they saved him from an invading warlord.

There's also a lot of really interesting behind-the-scenes footage about how they found the monks and got permission from the temple Abbot to use them in the play.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Helluva Show!, January 4, 2007
By 
wahzoh "wahzoh" (North Hollywood, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
I know absolutely nothing whatsoever about martial arts, but I will tell you that this is one helluva good show - sort of like a martial arts ballet - telling the story of the Shaolin Temple and its monks. The monks themselves are graceful and strong. It reminded me of watching the Olympics on TV - sort of a "gee whiz, did they really do that?" quality. I also got a big kick out of the little kid monks. I know kids are generally more limber than grown-ups, but jeez! Don't let your kids try these stunts at home. Some of the posters here seem to know a lot about gongfu, which I don't, but I will say that all in all, this is a very entertaining DVD. .
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5.0 out of 5 stars Watch the documentary!, January 4, 2007
By 
John Clarendon (Mashpee, MA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
Excellent documentation of a fascinating production, which toured the US and told the story of the Shaolin teachings, as well as demonstrating the "Kung Fu power". The part I actually enjoyed most was the additional documentary about the creation of the production - how they formed a team to go the Shaolin temple and recruit monks of all ages (7-70) to be in the touring company. A very interesting story for anyone interested in some of the culture behind one of the world's true martial arts.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Shaolin Wheel of Life, May 6, 2006
By 
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
This production is amazing and inspiring for all walks of martial artists. The choreography and pure talent of all the monks is humbling and unbelievable. I highly recommend this DVD for those who study martial arts, and for those who enjoy a good show. Flawless..
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't stop watching, December 16, 2002
By 
J. Wong "joohop" (Jackson Heights, NY United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
I was only going to watch 5 minutes of this DVD, and dedicate more time for it later, but as it turned out, I could NOT stop watching. I wound up watching the whole thing. The "actors" are actual students from Shaolin. Wheel of Life is the Chinese equivalent of the Irish "Riverdance." The story is about a group of monks from Shaolin who help the Chinese king defeat barbarians, only later to be betrayed by him for their unwillingness to stay as imperial guards. All the performance is done on the stage, and it was filmed rather well. Sometimes you view from the audiences' perspective, sometimes you get an extreme close-up. The performance was stunning. The acrobatic and gymastic skills of the actors just made my jaw drop. I found it very similar to watching a Cirque du Soleil show, more than anything. If you're a serious kung-fu afficionado like the reviewer below, you'll be disappointed, but for the general public, I believe you'll find this DVD highly entertaining, and probably view again and again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars wheel of life, January 7, 2002
By 
vym duy truong (Springfield,VA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Shaolin: Wheel of Life (DVD)
I've been seeing a lot movies and performing about kung-fu and martial art, but this's a best one I've ever seen berfore.The way they perform their shaolin forms are so perfect. This is a great DVD or VHS you should have at home and especcial one for whoever is learning kung-fu or wu-shu.....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing feats of mind & body., December 10, 2001
By 
Todd W. Souve' (Dayton, OH United States) - See all my reviews
The strength and discipline alone of the adults and children in this program are mind boggling. The music and pageantry only add to the amazing feats performed. Steel and concrete are broken on these monk's bodies, along with youths balancing their bodies on the sides of narrow poles standing only on their tip. Seeing this show in person would be the only thing better.
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