Andy Lau is a monk in The New Shaolin Temple (aka Shaolin)
In this 2011 action drama directed by Benny Chan and starring Andy Lau, Nicholas Tse, Wu Jing, Xing Yu, Fan Bingbing and Jackie Chan it relates the story of Hou Jie and his path to redemption through Shaolin and Buddhism.
Set in the Warlord Era (1916 – 1928), Lau plays the warlord Hou Jie who finally seizes control of Dengfeng in Henan Province but is afraid that his sworn brother, Song Hu (Shi Xiaohong), could take advantage of him and take everything. He then plans an ambush for Song. However, his deputy Cao Man (Tse) has other ideas and orchestrates a plan to eliminate both warlords, ultimately taking control of their armies.
Losing his daughter in the attack, Huo Jie manages to escape and seeks refuge in a Shaolin Buddhist Monastery where he becomes the disciple of cook Wudao (Jackie Chan) and later progresses to become a warrior monk with assistance from his seniors Jingneng (Wu Jing) and Jingkong (Xing Yu).
He also learns to control his anger and finally find peace. However, his former ally cum enemy Cao Man learns that he is still alive and sets out to kill him.
As well as containing some excellent action scenes this film is a drama at heart. It shows the true meaning of Shaolin and Buddhism and has a serious undertone despite having comic Jackie Chan.
Fortunately; you will find some of Chan’s classic moves as he plays a monk who does not know kung fu.
I found this film quite emotional, disregarding the language barrier and Lau does an amazing job transforming from a warmonger to a peace loving monk.
The story appeals to everyone who has witnessed the harsh cruelty of the world and has something for everyone.
The film is in Cantonese with English subtitles but the emotion brought out by the actors need no translation.
The 2 hour heart-warming film is an updated version of Jet Li’s debut film The Shaolin Temple and is also called The New Shaolin Temple.