Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Venice Review: Cary Joji Fukunaga's 'Beasts Of No Nation' Starring Idris Elba Venice Review: Cary Joji Fukunaga's 'Beasts Of No Nation' Starring Idris Elba Review: Netflix's 'Narcos' Starring Wagner Moura And Boyd Holbrook Review: Netflix's 'Narcos' Starring Wagner Moura And Boyd Holbrook Joaquin Phoenix Says He Doesn’t Think Making A Blockbuster Would Be "Fulfilling," Calls Chris Pine "F*cking Genius" Joaquin Phoenix Says He Doesn’t Think Making A Blockbuster Would Be "Fulfilling," Calls Chris Pine "F*cking Genius" Watch: Chloe Moretz Fights The Others In First Trailer For 'The 5th Wave' Watch: Chloe Moretz Fights The Others In First Trailer For 'The 5th Wave' James Bond Author Says Idris Elba Is "Too Street" To Play 007, And Bond Is "Weak" In 'Skyfall' James Bond Author Says Idris Elba Is "Too Street" To Play 007, And Bond Is "Weak" In 'Skyfall' Cary Fukunaga Says He "Wasn't Involved" With 'True Detective' Season 2, Explains His Departure From 'It' Cary Fukunaga Says He "Wasn't Involved" With 'True Detective' Season 2, Explains His Departure From 'It' Watch: Eddie Redmayne Is 'The Danish Girl' In First Trailer For Tom Hooper's Transgender Drama Watch: Eddie Redmayne Is 'The Danish Girl' In First Trailer For Tom Hooper's Transgender Drama Andrew Garfield Talks “The Pressure To Get It Right” for ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ Films & If He'll Do Another Franchise Andrew Garfield Talks “The Pressure To Get It Right” for ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ Films & If He'll Do Another Franchise Fall 2015 TV Preview: Our 25 Most Anticipated Shows Fall 2015 TV Preview: Our 25 Most Anticipated Shows Make It Happen Weinsteins: David Robert Mitchell Wants To Have Beer With Quentin Tarantino And Talk 'It Follows' Make It Happen Weinsteins: David Robert Mitchell Wants To Have Beer With Quentin Tarantino And Talk 'It Follows' On The Rise 2015: 15 Cinematographers To Watch On The Rise 2015: 15 Cinematographers To Watch Ridley Scott Says 'Prometheus 2' Is His Next Film Ridley Scott Says 'Prometheus 2' Is His Next Film 'Batman v Superman' And Why Early Screening Reports Need To Be Taken With A Grain Of Kryptonite 'Batman v Superman' And Why Early Screening Reports Need To Be Taken With A Grain Of Kryptonite Looks Like That Black-And-White Version Of 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Isn't Getting A Blu-Ray Release After All Looks Like That Black-And-White Version Of 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Isn't Getting A Blu-Ray Release After All The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far 17 Copycat Films Spawned From Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction' 17 Copycat Films Spawned From Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction'

Wong Kar-Wai Says Cuts To 'The Grandmaster' For International Release Are Minor, Done For Clarity

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist February 6, 2013 at 5:16PM

We have to admit, we took a bit of a pause when it was revealed over the weekend that Wong Kar-Wai had snipped fifteen minutes from "The Grandmaster" as he prepped the movie for its international premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival tomorrow. Was it pressure from distributors? A director who has worked on this movie for years who doesn't know when to stop? As it turns out, the real reason for the cuts is something far more banal.
0
The Grandmaster Wong Kar-Wai

We have to admit, we took a bit of a pause when it was revealed over the weekend that Wong Kar-Wai had snipped fifteen minutes from "The Grandmaster" as he prepped the movie for its international premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival tomorrow. Was it pressure from distributors? A director who has worked on this movie for years who doesn't know when to stop? As it turns out, the real reason for the cuts is something far more banal.

As you know, the film chronicles the rise of Ip Man, the martial arts legend, and it spans quite a few decades of his life. With the movie already running a little over two hours, it seems that Wong Kar-Wai simply wanted to clarify the narrative and remove extraneous bits that might not make a lot of sense or land with the same impact for viewers less aware about certain aspects of Chinese culture. "The version [released in Asia] has elements which Chinese audiences will be familiar with but which will not be that familiar to foreign audiences. There’s so much information that people could easily become confused," he told THR.

"For example, during Ip Man’s opening voice-over about his own background, he talks about his family having a business on Bonham Strand West [a traditional hub of import-export trade in downtown Hong Kong]. Hong Kong audiences will know what that means, but to foreigners it doesn’t mean anything," the director continued. "So we just changed it to how he was running a family business which exports goods to Hong Kong. We made adjustments like this so that international audiences know what it is about."

Frankly, that's fair enough. The director has already hinted that the longer cut will be on the DVD anyway, so no big deal, and it makes the picture easier to understand. There's not much to complain about. So in short: no harm, no foul.

Stay tuned, because tomorrow we'll have our review of the film. Until then, here's the most recent trailer for the movie.

This article is related to: The Grandmaster, Wong Kar-wai


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates