A. KAPLAN | Las Vegas, NV United States | 11/22/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Based on the trailers for this movie, I went in expecting some fun fight scenes between Jet Li and Jet Li, some cool special effects, and a decent performance from the always-charming Carla Gugino. And my expectations were met. The fight scenes were pretty exciting. There were good performances from Jet Li and Carla Gugino, although I'm sure she'd prefer to point out that the much better, much more successful Spy Kids is also on her resume. It was also nice seeing appearances from members of the cast of writers/producers/director Morgan and Wong's TV series Space: Above and Beyond in supporting roles. And Delroy Lindo should thank Samuel L. Jackson every morning that he's gotten too big to appear in movies like these, since Lindo seems to have made his recent career out of Jackson leftovers.On the other hand, the story isn't very smart. The screenplay is credited to Morgan and Wong, who wrote some of the X-Files best episodes, produced the aforementioned (and underrated) Space: Above and Beyond, and crafted a surprisingly spooky big-screen debut with Final Destination. Credits aside, viewers will find very little evidence that anyone actually wrote this movie (and anyone who did shouldn't go around admitting it in public). Another particularly annoying point is Lindo's (and later Li's) sidekick, speaking stock tough-guy lines in such an over-the-top growl, he's even more of a cartoon character than everyone else in the film.Still, as the end credits rolled, I went through my mental checklist. Cool fight scenes: check. Cool effects: check. Jet Li and Carla Gugino, still emminently watchable: check. So I got what I came for. Pity it wasn't wrapped up inside a better, smarter story."
GREAT ACTION MOVIE!
B. Fitzgerald | salem, or | 09/03/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The One is a true "man's" action movie, full of fighting which is made better by the great heavy metal music selections. This movie starts out fast and rarely lets up, pitting the baddest martial arts action hero in movies against himself, it's great! Other reviewers are right, there could be a better story line, but with all of that action and one of the best endings in action movie history, story line is secondary."
Jet Li's best american film to date
Andrew J. Fong | philly | 11/06/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The one is a very innovative action movie. The slow mo an fast paced action sequences were very cool. The movie has a somewhat involved plot that the filmakers rush too quickly through just to get to the action. I feel that Jet Li is a wonderful actor, his english has improved with each American film that he has made. One great thing to see is that he finally has a love interest. He still has never kissed a woman in any movie I have seen. To people who have seem Jet in Asian movies like myself there still seems to be something missing in his american movies. If you have not really seen Jet Li before this movie should peek your interest. The film is good and I recomend it but how can any Jet li film live up to past masterpieces like Fist of Legend, fong sai yuk, or the Once upon a time in China series. Go see this movie just for the end sequence where each Jet Li fights with different kung fu styles. It is nice to see Martial arts done by a Martial artist."
"Don't you people ever learn?"
Devan | Astoria, OR | 05/06/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I remember going head-over-heels when I first saw "The One" in theaters, and then when I purchased it on DVD, it became abundantly clear upon each repeated viewing that there was basically nothing much hiding behind the special effects and ultra-cool martial arts moves, but it succeeds in giving you an exciting ride if you want it to.
Don't get me wrong, I like Jet Li. He's a great guy and I seriously think he's the modern day Bruce Lee. He'll kick your ass if you cross the line and interfere with his moral obligations. He upholds that moral code when he's the good Jet Li, but unfortunately falls flat as the evil Jet Li, who pretty much dominates the film and was the sole-reason why I and many others plunked down our 8 bucks to see it in the first place.
Granted, the bad Jet Li wreaks a lot of havok in the film like crushing throats, shooting and bringing heavy objects down on police officers, and moving at supernatural speeds to hurl people across the room and dodge capture. It's a great popcorn flick and will leave your mouth open in awe and excitement, but that depends if you resent the all-too-familiar special effects and "so-close-to-Highlander-it's-painful" plot. I must note however that there are some original ideas present that you would have to see for yourself. Overall, this is not going to be a sci-fi classic like "The Matrix", but deserves a rental to be cherished for its entertainment value and nothing less. I assure you there will be nary a dull moment when you watch "The One"."
Typical b-grade sci-fi/action film.
Eric | 11/08/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"The One features an extremely silly, but also very intriguing premise. You see, our world is only one of over 100 (I can't remember the exact number, was it 125?)parallel universes that exist. You have a different personality in another world, and if you actually travel to these other worlds and kill another version of you, then you gain his or her power. That's exactly what Jet Li is trying to do, and there are a couple of multiverse cops out to stop him. This is all just build-up for a big one-on-one fight between the two Jet Lis, so you're basically watching 80 minutes of B.S.But that's not to say the idea doesn't hold any promise. It's just that the movie ignores the concept in favor of big fight scenes. Being an action fan and all, that's perfectly fine with me, except the action in this movie fails to generate any thrills since they're way too exaggerated and involve waaayyy too much wirework. And is it just me or does anyone else find the premise of Jet Li fighting Jet Li incredibly lame? The fun of watching a martial arts fight is seeing two different individuals going head-to-head, mano-a-mano. In this case, the fight is computer-aided and not even entirely convincing. The One does feature a few good actors, particularly Delroy Lindo and Jason Statham, both of whom are fine here, though I would have liked to have seen Statham kick a little more butt. He's definitely got the makings of a top-notch action icon, certainly moreso than the overrated Vin Diesel. But at least we can always watch The Transporter for that (which is, by the way, a far more entertaining action thriller). As for Li himself, he's stuck in a role that doesn't do him many favors. First, you have to wonder how his evil self is able to find his alternate versions in all the other universes if they have different names. Best explanation I can see is that he broke into the multiverse database and tracked down all the versions of himself out there, which actually raises another question: how does the multiverse keep track of everybody on every alternate universe? There are the usual paradoxes of an alternate universe, that being the fact the parallel worlds can't be too different if there is a physically identical twin of yourself in all these other worlds (meaning your parents would have had to have hooked up at the exact same time for all 125 worlds) and all versions of yourself would probably have to die at the exact same time, so as to make certain no other weird influences would occur (say, one version of yourself dies suddenly, but another one goes on and marries and has kids the other one wouldn't have; kind of screws up the order, doesn't it?). But according to this movie, not everyone dies at the same time in these alternate worlds, which begs the question of why there aren't any super-powerful geriatrics. After all, there must be at least one old man or woman who gains all the remaining power of those who died. Best not to think of such things with a movie like this. Makes your head hurt after awhile. But really, I recommend you just miss this movie altogether. There are a couple of enjoyable moments, including a scene where Li handcuffs some cops together and to a chair, but there's too much CGI at work, not enough thrills, and certainly not enough brains to pull this premise off. Jet Li's best American film to date is still Kiss of the Dragon, see that one instead."