Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In Review “A Ferocious Thrill Ride of Martial Arts Mayhem”

Twilight of the Warriors Walled In review cover

Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In is a ferocious and unrelenting action thriller that masterfully weaves together themes of revenge, greed, power, survival, and violence. Directed by Soi Cheang and starring an impressive ensemble cast including Louis Koo, Sammo Hung, Richie Jen, Raymond Lam, Terrance Lau, Kenny Wong, Philip Ng, Tony Wu, and German Cheung, this 2024 Hong Kong neo-noir martial arts crime film is an exhilarating ride from start to finish.

Set in the 1980s, troubled youth Chan Lok-kwun accidentally enters the Walled City, discovers the order amidst its chaos, and learns important life lessons along the way. In the Walled City, he becomes close friends with Shin, Twelfth Master and AV. Under the leadership of Tornado, they resist against the invasion of villain Mr. Big in a series of fierce battles. Together, they vow to protect the safe haven that is Kowloon Walled City.

Previously known as Kowloon Walled City, the film plunges viewers into the gritty, shadowy underworld of Hong Kong’s most notorious enclave. The story is driven by a relentless quest for revenge and survival, with each character’s motivations steeped in greed and the pursuit of power. The plot is gripping and the stakes are high, keeping the audience on the edge of their seats throughout.

The film’s true standout feature, however, is its dazzling displays of martial arts. The fight scenes are balletically choreographed, showcasing a brutal beauty that is both mesmerizing and terrifying. Every punch, kick, and bone-crunching blow is executed with precision and intensity, reminiscent of the visceral impact seen in The Raid. The sheer physicality and skill of the performers elevate the action to new heights, making each confrontation a visual and emotional spectacle.

Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In image on Screen One
Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In

The drama that underpins the violence is equally compelling. The powerful performances from the cast bring depth and nuance to their characters, adding layers of complexity to the story. The raw emotions and intense interactions between characters enhance the narrative, making the moments of respite between the action all the more impactful.

Louis Koo, in particular, shines as the enigmatic Cyclone. His understated yet powerful performance serves as the centrifugal force that binds the multiple plot strands together, adding depth and complexity to the movie’s dynamic. Koo’s portrayal is both captivating and pivotal, making him a standout in an already impressive ensemble cast.

Despite its numerous strengths, Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In does tread familiar ground in the genre. The themes of revenge and power struggles are well-worn tropes, and the film’s gritty aesthetic, while expertly executed, is typical of neo-noir martial arts cinema.

Overall, Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In is a must-see for martial arts and action enthusiasts. Its combination of stunning choreography, powerful drama, and relentless action makes it one of the best martial arts films since The Raid. This film is a testament to the enduring appeal of Hong Kong cinema, delivering a thrilling and visceral experience that will leave audiences breathless.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Twilight of the Warriors: Walled In poster on Screen One

Twilight Of The Warriors: Walled In is in selected cinemas now

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