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It’s been 15 years since Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon waltzed into cinemas and wowed and enthralled audiences across the length and breadth of the world. Because of how superb the original was, moviegoers were right to be wary when it was announced that a sequel was on it ways so long after the first film was released. But the first trailer for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2 suggests that any trepidation should immediately cease, because it looks just like its original, which means it looks superb.
Obviously, the fact that neither the original lead, Chow Yun-fat, or its director, Ang Lee, is returning for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword Of Destiny is rather disappointing, but simply seeing Michelle Yeoh’s face is reminder that we’re still in good company.
Like the original, the sweeping and glorious visuals of the Chinese mountains perfectly mix with the operatic fight scenes, while Michelle Yeoh’s Yu Shy Lien’s narration teases that having been out of combat for several years she has now been lured back into violent action to stop the Green Destiny sword from falling into the wrong hands.
Director Yuen Woo-ping, who has previously worked as the choreographer on The Matrix and on Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which means that he is quite clearly the right man to replace the Oscar-winning talents of Ang Lee, looks to have mirrored the style and energy of the original.
The action scenes look gloriously lit, pulsating, and, as you’d expect, perfectly choreographed, and it appears as though it will be a worthy successor to the lauded original. The last scene in particular, which sees two warriors battle down a collapsing building, i scintillating to watch, even if the breathy, overly moody version of "Bad Moon Rising" is a bit overwrought.
We’ll get to see if Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword Of Destiny can match up to the original when it is released on February 8, 2016. Those of you wanting to enjoy the film on the big-screen will be able to do so in IMAX theatres, while if you simply want to watch it from the comfort of your home, you’ll be able to do just that too, as it is being released on Netflix simultaneously. From the looks of the trailer, I’m going to guess that IMAX will to be the way to go to really see the film pop in all of its splendour.