A band of European mercenaries, including William Garin (Matt Damon) and Pero Tovar (Pedro Pascal ) , travel to China during the reign of the Renzong Emperor . Resting in a cave a few miles north of the Great Wall, they are attacked by a monster, leaving only William and Tovar alive. They cut off the monster's leg and bring it with them. The next day, reaching the Wall, they are imprisoned at a stronghold under command General Shao (Hanyu Zhang) , Strategist Wang (Andy Lau) and a Commander : Lin Mae (Tian Jing) . Furthermore , they meet a strange European man called Ballard (Willem Dafoe) . They belong to ¨Nameless Order¨ who exists to combat a horde of alien monsters called Taotieh, which attacks once every sixty years. As they defend the Wall against a horde of monstrous creatures . While examining the severed monster leg, the Order's commanders are surprised by the first assault from the monster horde, one week early. One of mankind's greatest wonders. 1700 years to build. 5500 miles long. What were they trying to keep out?
This is a monster movie full of noisy action , bloody combats , groundbreaking attacks , impressive battles and a lot of digital effects . It deals with two European mercenaries in search of the secret to gunpowder and they are taken prisoner by soldiers of the Nameless Order , while confronting an unimaginable and seemingly invincible forcé . Lavishly produced , it was the most expensive Chinese film ever, with a budget of $140 million . The picture relies heavily on the really excessive special effects by 3D Computer Generator with extreme digitalization . The movie contains breathtaking battles , overwhelming fights , spectacular images and a cast of thousands , due to the huge amount of crew involved . The picture is more a monster movie than a historical or Chinese custom yarn .
Brilliant cinematography from Stuart Dryburgh and Xiaoding Zhao, including various filming locations , such as New Zealand , Qingdao, China , WanDa Studios, Qingdao, China . However , the producers were denied permission to shot on the real Great Wall, so some landscapes were added digitally. Although the colored mountains and some outdoors in the movie are authentic . And thrilling as well as evocative musical score with oriental sounds by Ramin Djawadi of Game of thrones .The motion picture was professionally directed by the Chinese Zhang Ziyi , though it has some flaws and gaps . Ziyi has established himself firmly as a distinguished filmmaker/producer whose last films have generated millions in China box office . Originally released in 2002 in Asia, it would not be another two years until this film was released in the United States . Studio executives were concerned that the foreign-language film would not be successful at the box office with American audiences . Among fans, this is part of the "Zhang Ziyi trilogy," which includes Hero (2002), Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) and House of Flying Daggers (2004) . In all three films, her romantic relationship is ended with the death of either herself or her boyfriend . Zhang Yimou is an excellent and veteran director who in his films often explores the dark side of life in small Chinese rural communities . Most of his pictures begin with the title displayed in Chinese calligraphy style . He has achieved several successes such as ¨Curse of the Golden flower¨ , ¨House of flying daggers¨ , Hero¨ , ¨The road home¨, ¨The red lantern¨, "Shanghai Triad" winning several prizes in various International Festivals . And Zhang Yimou's ambitious historical epic ¨Hero¨ , it has grossed at the Chinese box office to become one of the best biggest release of all time, including American tentpoles , being already the third highest-grossing Chinese film ever, as well as the top grossing Chinese film of 2003 . This ¨The Great Wall¨ also got a big success at boxoffice all around the world . Rating : 6/10 . Passable and acceptable . Essential and indispensable seeing for adventures fans .