I bought this movie an age ago, and then I read a review saying it was pure tripe. So it sat on the shelf for a long old while in the ‘to watch’ section. However, the universe works in karmic ways and while a friend was visiting, we asked her what she wanted to watch and she picked this. It turned out to be a pleasant surprise. It’s a pretty straight forward buddy movie, an Asian monk protecting an ancient scroll, a young American martial arts movie loving kid and the love interest. The monk takes the kid under his wing (even if the kid doesn’t know it), prophecies are fulfilled and the world is saved.
There are some above-average action sequences, some sassy dialog, some tin-pot wisdom and a couple of scenes which make you glad you watched. There are some frustrations as well, the villain introduces some over complex technology near the end to explain away one minor plot issue that could have been countered in more simple and pleasing ways and bits of the final battle leave a sour taste in the mouth for their paint-by-numbers feel. Overall though it satisfies the comedy action glands and presses some of the right buttons. Certainly no more than 5/10 but it’s a solid 5.