After two decades of gentler subjects, Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar Wai is returning to the genre of martial arts.
The story of two kung fu masters: he comes from China’s south; she is from the north. His name is Ip Man; hers is Gong Er. Their paths cross in the town of Foshan on the eve of the Japanese invasion in 1936. China is in turmoil and the country’s south teeters on the brink of partition from the north. Gong Er’s father is a renowned grandmaster. He too travels to Foshan for his retirement ceremony. The ongoing Japanese occupation of the northeast sets the stage for a betrayal that will shake Master Gong’s world. It will also cause Gong Er to make a decision that will change the course of her life.
»Some seek to recover what is rightfully theirs. Some wish to penetrate the arcane mysteries. Some light fires and some light lamps to show the way forward. Kung fu: between a horizontal and a vertical, dishonour and glory. An era: between the rise and fall, exile and reunion. The path of a Grandmaster: Being. Knowing. Doing.«
- Wong Kar Wai