Professed wuxia aficionado RZA directs, cowrites (with Eli Roth) and stars in this self-regarding chopsocky pastiche; he even narrates the proceedings with a voiceover so flat you wonder if his metalworker character has shot himself with a poisoned dart. The convoluted plot finds the Wu-Tang founder’s blacksmith joining forces with an outcast heir (Rick Yune) and a British visitor (Russell Crowe) who at first shows more interest in the women and opium at Lucy Liu’s brothel than in taking on Byron Mann’s usurping clan leader. As befits a Tarantino-endorsed production, the anachronisms, one-liners and clashing acting styles are ostensibly part of the fun, but both the martial arts and the slightly dull narrative patchwork are too choppily edited to gain much of a foothold.
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|Release date:||Friday November 2 2012|