76 of 78 people found the following review helpful
on October 30, 2004
To me, this is one of the best Jet Li movies. Or, may as well call it one of the best movies. It has a lot of humor and wisdom in it. However, as someone jokes that dubbing is the eighth sin, the dubbing in this movie, possibly to match the lip movement, has the script modified. The humor was lost, as well as the wisdom. I compared an Asian release with the US release: the script as well as the English subtitle are modified in the US release. I highly recommend this movie to you, except that it may be best to find the Asian release. I also checked that my Asian release has the English subtitle which is very close to what the actors and actresses say in Chinese. Also one thing about the US release is that the song is taken out from the movie. We usually accept a French song or Italian song in a foreign movie. How come we don't accept a Chinese song in a Chinese movie? The original Chinese song is very suited to the events of the movie. My advice remains: the Asian release of this movie probably can give you more enjoyment than the modified one.
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on November 18, 2002
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
If at all possible, get the original Chinese/subtitled version of this film under the name, Tai Chi Master. The U.S. edit version, Twin Warriors, cuts out some short but apt scenes that lend extra continuity and humor to an already fine story. The dubbed dialogue also dulls the storyline, foregoes some subtle humor and stunts some of the character development. O.K., so the English subtitles often lay waste proper (English) grammar, spelling and word useage, but that's part of the charm of this type of movie. (Why don't Chinese producers hire proficient, English-as-a-first-language editors to do a final review of the subtitles? I would be willing to do it part-time, for a modest stipend and free copies of the DVDs. :)
This film plays the classic elements of revenge, loyalty, betrayal, and the clearly emerging delineation, and struggle, between Good and Evil, quite well. Admittedly, some of the wire-work is fantastic, but it adds to, not detracts from, the epic scale of the story. Jet Li portrays the "good guy" extremely well, with Michelle Yeoh in a very good supporting role and contributing one of the movie's best one-on-one fight scenes.
I saw this film at the theaters almost ten years ago, when it was first released, and it is still on my personal, "top 10" list of the best kung-fu movies I've ever seen.
180 of 210 people found the following review helpful
on December 5, 2000
This movie is good. The fights and unrealistic and stylish, and the story is good. But there is no excuse for what happened to this movie. We live in America. We are one of the most diverse nations in the world. The localizers of this movie seem to think that Americans don't know anything about, and don't care about, Chinese language and culture. As a result all the original language and music has been cut, and there is only a spoken English version. This is inexcusable, especially for a DVD release. I have no problem with a dub, but on a DVD you MUST include both. It is a good movie, but on principle I will not give it a passing grade on this element alone. I bought a DVD player so I would not have any problems getting the subtitled version of a movie, and then they pull this crap! Please do not support dub only releases. Please go to ... the auctions amazon and find a DVD of Tai Chi Master. This is the Chinese version of this film. It will have English subtitles. The image quality is worse, but to have the true language and the real voice of Jet Li, it is worth it.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2000
This is a classic Jet Li film, and I was happy to finally get my hands on it--I mean it's got Michelle Yeoh too!! The problem I have is---Dimension Films is finally releasing these great martial arts films by Jet Li and Jackie Chan, great--but they are keeping no integrity. The names of the films are changed, they're dubbed, packaged and sent out. Why not take care, and use the DVD format--so people can have the option to watch the film with subtitles. It seems the companies are more interested in cashing in on the work of these great stars, than the films themselves. It's unfortunate that the Western buying market is considered that ignorant. The movie itself has some fantastic fight sequences and the story is pretty good. Has to be ranked high in Li's catalog of films. It is in the category of "Once Upon a Time in China" opposed to his less fantastical movies like, "My Father is a Hero" or "Romeo Must Die."
42 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on June 23, 2010
Do not waste your money on this blu-ray if you already have the dvd. The improvement in the picture quality is marginal at best and indiscernible at worst. This is a complete rip off; it seems no effort was made to remaster this disc and present it in true high definition.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on October 12, 2000
I own both the VHS and DVD versions of "The Tai Chi Master". I've seen many Jet Li films and I enjoyed this one. I liked the action scenes but some die-hard martial art fans may not like it all that much if they don't like 'wire work'. You can read the other reviews if you're interested in the storyline.
The DVD version has much better picture quality than the VHS version and it is in widescreen (the VHS version has the sides chopped sometimes chopping parts of the subtitles!).
The spoken language on the DVD is in English (dubbed), compared with Chinese (Cantonese) with English subtitles on the VHS version. Sadly some of the translation is lost in the English DVD version -- it looks like they made an effort to match the words with the mouths moving, so the translation has been adjusted to fit. This was definately an attempt to help this movie appeal to a widestream English audience rather than just die-hard Hong Kong movie fans.
Dissapointingly the DVD version offers no subtitles or other audio options. I would have liked to see at least the Cantonese soundtrack as well as the English, with English (and other language) subtitles as an option. That way die-hard fans (like me) can watch it in Cantonese and read the subtitles, but the 'main stream' viewers can see it in English.
All-in-all I still enjoyed the DVD version (due to the better picture quality) It makes a nice addition to my Jet Li collection.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2006
for those of you who don't want the americanized version of 'the tai chi master' (aka 'twin warriors'-- ugh! i hate this title!), i have found an alternative.
i recently purchased the original chinese language, english subtitled version of 'the tai chi master' from a site named chinesetapes.com for only $12.95 (not counting shipping). it's distributed thru a company named universe laser & video, which put out 2 of jet li's other films 'fong sai yuk I & II' (aka 'the legend I & II'-- hate that title as well) . i quickly opened the packaging, popped the disc in the player, pressed 'PLAY', and smiled, because this is what you get:
you get a very clean transfer of the film, some specks here and there but nothing to complain about; it's a step above my vhs copy. it is in the widescreen format and the subtitles are a digitized white on the screen.
the sound is also decent. it's in dolby digital with 5.1 surround . the two languages are cantonese and mandarin.
you also have your choice of 3 subtitles: traditional or simplified chinese and english. the opening theme song is even subtitled, which wasn't in my vhs copy.
not too many extras on this disc; only a trailer of this film plus 'fong sai yuk I & II'(which i also recommend getting from chinesetapes.com) and profiles of the actors.
the best part of this disc, however, is that it's region-free. it can play in any DVD player in the world!!
as for the film, we know the story. two shaolin monks go their separate ways: jet li joins the anti-government movement, chin siu ho climbs the ranks of the imperial army; he soon betrays his friend and the movement. our hero eventually learns the graceful and tranquil art of tai chi to defeat his now-barbaric foe. michelle yeoh assists jet in defeating the evil eunuch and his sister who rule the province. yuen woo ping delivers the terrific action with his fight choreography and tight direction.
jet li fans who want the real version of 'the tai chi master' start at chinesetapes.com to get that copy of the film. you pay a little bit more than the amazon price, but believe me, you get more bang for your buck. i can't recommend this product highly enough.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 1999
This is definately one of the best martial arts movie I've ever seen (the other ones were also by Jet Li). Too bad Jet Li's english isn't good enough to enter the American market (yet hopefully), because he would monopolized the market and amateurs like Van Damme would be unemployed.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2000
This ranks up there as one of the 2 best jet li movies ever made.The other movie is Swordsmen 2 which is nothing short of a masterpiece and in my opinion can not be beaten by any American or Chinese Movie to date,there is just too much put into that movie,but back to the Tai-Chi Master which makes a valliant effort and displays the choreography skills of Yuen-woo Ping like none of his other movies can.The story is also very good with some comedy but alot of seriousness and the ultimate bad-guy which is jet's child hood friend in the beginning of the movie but becomes corrupted after they get kicked out of shaolin and he becomes obssesed with becoming a powerful enuch after seeing the privelages they recieve and becomes willing to do anything for power,and by the end of the movie becomes one of the evilest and most memorable villans ever created in a film.In addition Jet learning Tai-Chi at the end to defeat Tienabo makes for one of the best endings and fight scenes there is.This movie is very hard to come across but if you ever find it you better grab it.
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on April 24, 2003
The Hong Kong releases of this movie are under the title "The Tai-Chi Master" and are universally better than this release. This was a wonderful movie before it was shrunk and dubbed. Disney seems doing this to all of the Hong Kong movies it can buy. Not only are they presented in a shortened version, they are not so much translated as rewritten. While I love these movies they just can't survive being dumbed down. It takes them from the sublimely ridiculous to the annoyingly stupid. Avoid any and all of these releases. The originals are well worth the trouble of digging up.