Tell me if you've heard this one. Rich philanthropist by day, costumed crime fighter by, well, other parts of the day. That's the first masked vigilante rule broken by Lulu Wong (aka Silver Hawk) - she seems to do most of her crimefighting during the day, and we all know that to be most effective she should be doing it at night. Of course, today, Silver Hawk not only has to fight poachers stealing panda bears, she has to go up against madmen bent on world domination!
Yes, Silver Hawk has all the makings of a standard, cookie-cutter superhero film. Though it does have Michelle Yeoh - that's got to count for something. And honestly, the fight choreography was enjoyable - Yeoh is pretty amazing.
It's too bad she couldn't completely make up for the silly writing and poor editing. I'm trying to figure out if the original, being made in Hong Kong, was a completely different movie, and they edited the crap out if for Western, English-speaking audiences. Some scenes are completely chopped - to the point that you can't really follow what's going on. And the dialogue? It appears to have been filmed originally in English (except for a few parts in Chinese), but then that English was dubbed over by English-speaking actors who didn't have accents. This doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. Or maybe it was dubbed over by the original actors and it was just a poor job of looping in post.
Some other odd, random stuff I have to comment on -
The extreme-sport ninjas were an interesting touch.
Did that guy really just go to old-magazine-covers.com to find old magazine covers?
I was going to note this as not based on a comic, but according to Michelle Yeoh's website, it's based on a comic from the 40's and 50's. Of course, I can't find any other reference on the internet to this comic, much less any other pictures. But maybe that's because it's over 50 years old, and I don't know how to search the web in Chinese.
English actor Luke Goss (Blade II, the upcoming Hellboy II) plays villain Alexendar Wolfe, and Michael Jai White (Spawn, various DC-comics related animated projects, the upcoming Dark Knight) plays one of his henchman.
And the second masked vigilante rule broken by Silver Hawk: When you're about town in your secret identity, never, ever, fight exactly like your super alter ego. In broad daylight. In front of people. So that basically everyone can figure out your secret identity without a bit of detective skill.
See it if like Hong Kong films or Michelle Yeoh, or if you can't sleep and notice that it's on Encore Action tonight.
Don't see it if you're bored with the same old same old in superhero films.