2020 / 87m - China
Action, Fantasy
Buddha Palm Technique poster


May 16, 2023


A neat surprise. With a title sporting the words Buddha Palm, I'd expected some pretty traditional martial arts streamer filler. Instead, I got a fancy urban fantasy flick that transports the classic martial arts elements to a more futuristic/fantastical setting. It's a level of creativity and boldness rarely seen in Chinese streamer land, but I sure welcome the diversification.

Jian Bei, a debt collector, works hard to support himself and his sister. She is terminally ill, but there is a chance she might survive. She can be given an experimental treatment, but in order to get it, Bei will need to pitch in. He'll be given the Buddha Palm skill, which he'll need to complete three arduous tasks. If he can manage that, his sister will be saved.

The setting is cool and the fantastical elements feel pretty novel. The CG can still be a little iffy, but it is mostly functional and the film does a good job of bringing its fantastical sci-fi world to life. Other than that it's a slick but relatively generic action flick. We already know China can crank these out with the dozens, so to see some new elements introduced is definitely a big plus. Good fun.