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Iron_Leopard

Why do directors keep putting Ziyi Zhang in their MA movies?

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I know I'm late but I just saw the trailer to The Grandmaster. Looks good but I'm so tired of Ziyi Zhang being in these movies. Yes shes cute but I just can't buy this 70 pound girl going toe to toe with martial arts masters in kung fu movies. I guess she's only there as a familar face for western audiences. Like with Hero. Most pointless character ever.

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I think she's a capable wu xia actress and, weirdly, I think she's really good in "The Grandmaster." But I know what you're saying. I suppose we have "Crouching Tiger..." to thank.

But I'd rather see her than someone like, say, Gillian Cheung and I love me some Gillian Cheung.

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She's a bankable actress that's why she gets her roles, I think she's quite beautiful, but as an actress, lets say she's no Angela Mao.

As far as people ragging on her body I'm taking it they never been to China or met many Chinese girls/women because that's a fairly typical body type for them.

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Why would her body shape have anything to do with her ability as an actress? In my opinion she's both beautiful and far from being a sloppy performer. She's a very talented actress and usually pulls off her roles very well.

If you're going into these types of movies to see curvaceous bodies on display, I think you have the wrong mindset to begin with.

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i liked her in house of flying but in grandmasters , not convincing at all

It's interesting to read the varied opinions on here as I thought she was fantastic in "The Grandmasters." I think the role called for it to be played icy cold and that's why the obvious warmth between her character and Ip Man were a nice change of pace.

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I have to admit, I liked her in The Grandmasters. I know a lot of people wonder why Zhang is in MA films, but she did perform well in a few non-MA films. I thought she was good in Memoirs of a Geisha as well as Sophie's Revenge.

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I think she's a good actress and is well suited to the more arthouse influenced kung fu films but i agree she's not convincing at all as a kung fu actress. It seemed counter intuitive to me since she has a very delicate appearance, but i guess that might be the intended effect. Either way i'd prefer if she was just an actress.

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Why would her body shape have anything to do with her ability as an actress? In my opinion she's both beautiful and far from being a sloppy performer. She's a very talented actress and usually pulls off her roles very well.

If you're going into these types of movies to see curvaceous bodies on display, I think you have the wrong mindset to begin with.

I think the point is that it's not particularly convincing to have her playing a martial arts master when it looks like a strong breeze could knock her over.

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I'll be the first to disagree with your second paragraph. I don't need to go to China, I have met plenty of Chinese women in my life. And they don't all fall into your obvious stereotype...

And if you are just trying to rub it in peoples faces that you have been to China, I don't care, doesn't impress me... AT ALL

How am I stereotyping? I didn't say ALL Chinese women have her body type, I said her body is fairly common.

Any why would you think I'm trying to impress you? lol there's people on this forum that live in China, I do not.

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I think the point is that it's not particularly convincing to have her playing a martial arts master when it looks like a strong breeze could knock her over.

That's fair. But then, for someone unfamiliar with Bruce Lee (unlikely I know), he looks like he weighs about fourteen pounds.

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That's fair. But then, for someone unfamiliar with Bruce Lee (unlikely I know), he looks like he weighs about fourteen pounds.

Bruce still looks athletic and muscular, he may be thin but he looks like a fighter. I guess my criticism of Zhang could extend to someone like Moon Lee. But In her case even though she is very dainty once she started fighting it was totally convincing in my opinion. I mean obviously she would never be able to pull that off in real life but from an on screen perspective it was convincing and i am able to suspend my disbelief. If Moon couldn't pull of the fight scenes the way she did it would be silly trying to sell her as an action hero.

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Again. When your breakthrough role is in a movie as big and successful as CTHD then you're bound to be type cast. Also I'm sure she has also been in many non MA movies. But MA movie fans obviously would not be as interested in those other movies.

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Bruce still looks athletic and muscular, he may be thin but he looks like a fighter. I guess my criticism of Zhang could extend to someone like Moon Lee. But In her case even though she is very dainty once she started fighting it was totally convincing in my opinion. I mean obviously she would never be able to pull that off in real life but from an on screen perspective it was convincing and i am able to suspend my disbelief. If Moon couldn't pull of the fight scenes the way she did it would be silly trying to sell her as an action hero.

I'd agree than Moon Lee is a stand out. Few on screen female fighters have been as convincing as she was.

I think though, for wu Xia styled fights and, in the case if "The Grandmaster," highly stylised fights, Zhang Ziyi suits the setting. But then everyone's entitled to their opinion and I understand she's not everybody's cup of tea.

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Again. When your breakthrough role is in a movie as big and successful as CTHD then you're bound to be type cast. Also I'm sure she has also been in many non MA movies. But MA movie fans obviously would not be as interested in those other movies.

I looked at HKMDB and it lists 25 roles for her since her debut in 1999. I would say 5 or 6 of those are martial arts movies. It seems like they are the biggest part of her filmography because western audiences are less likely to see her dramas, romantic comedies, etc because companies don't release them here.

It was like when I started watching HK movies, I thought every one was a gangster movie that starred Chow Yun Fat because that was all Tai Seng was releasing. I didn't know just how much stuff came out in other genres for several years until DVD importing became easier and I was able to see a wider range of movies.

Anyway, Wong Kar Wai tends to stick with the same actors, obviously he liked what he got from Zhang before (also she was willing to work with WKW's unorthodox filming techniques and long shooting schedules) and knew she had some background in being able to perform kung fu moves onscreen and worked with Yuen Woo Ping before. Really not a huge surprise that he cast her in Grandmaster.

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It's certainly because of her ballet background. It's been proven many times in HK martial arts movies that you need at least a strong athletic (non-martial arts related) background to catch up with the fight choreography. Look at how Michelle Yeoh managed herself in Yes, Madam!.

I'm not fond of Ziyi myself though other than her looks and good acting skills.

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