A mysterious and immortal Tibetan kung fu master, who has spent the last 60 years traveling around the world protecting the ancient Scroll of the Ultimate, mentors a selfish street kid in the ancient intricacies of kung fu.
Chow Yun-Fat, playing an ageless Tibetan Lama, teams up with Seann William Scott, a high-strung pickpocket, to defend the Scroll of the Ultimate from a Nazi plot. The movie's virtue is that it refuses to take any of this very seriously, instead giving the two stars (and also Jaime King, as Mr. Scott's rival and love interest) time to indulge in half-witty banter and cheap, exuberant martial-arts stunts. The scruffiness of the filmmaking and the incoherence of the story seem less like flaws than like a deliberate, affectionate tribute to the vibrant and anarchic Hong Kong action films of the past. — A.O. Scott
2003-04-16 | A. O. Scott | Read the New York Times Review of Bulletproof Monk