YMMV / Ip Man

  • And You Thought It Would Fail: A strange example. When Mike Tyson was announced to star in the third film along with Yen, there were many people, including Yen's own wife, who worried that Yen could get injured or wounded from working with Tyson, who is famous for both his brilliant boxing resume and nasty attitude problems. It turned out that it was Yen who accidentally injured Tyson during the shootings, breaking one of his fingers when he instinctively blocked a punch with his elbow.
  • Anticlimax Boss: General Miura from the first film. Despite the guy being built as a powerful and dangerous antagonist, his final fight against Ip Man is just a glorified Curb-Stomp Battle for the Chinese. Miura does pose a bigger challenge than any of his underlings, but at the end, he only gets a couple of shots and throws before Ip Man proceeds to wreck him for the entire match.
  • Anvilicious: Foreigners: Bad. Chinese: Good.
  • Ass Pull: At the third film, Ip Man's skill to avoid strikes by hearing them comes from nowhere in the exact moment he needs it. Not only it comes unseen, but it was never implied that such ability could be possible in the film's setting.
  • Cool vs. Awesome: Many of the fights could be argued to be this, showcasing Wing Chun vs. Karate in the first film, and Wing Chun vs. Boxing in the 2nd. However, the 3rd film tops them all, with one of the focal points of the marketing being Donnie Yen vs. Mike Tyson!
  • Critical Research Failure: Despite what the film implies, karate was not as patriotic or culturally representative to Japan as wing chun was to China at the time of the setting, and in fact was considered somewhat of a foreign curiosity due to his Okinawan origin. Instead, it would have been more accurate to portray the Japanese soldiers as practitioners of judo or jujutsu, which were the "official" martial arts of the Japanese imperial military. However, as fans of Mixed Martial Arts will know, the resultant fighting scenes would have been vastly different from the final product and would have not resembled your classy martial arts flick, so it can be taken as Acceptable Breaks from Reality in order to allow for more conventional, kick-to-kick fighting scenes.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: Kenji Kawai is the composer of the scores to both films.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Frank, Mike Tyson's character, among other reasons for being the only opponent in the trilogy who is not bested by Ip Man.
  • Even Better Sequel:
    • The second film is considered by many as a step forward from the first one, as it shows much more fleshed out antagonists and more credible challenges to Donnie Yen's character without losing the plot. Even its inevitable Anvilicious Chinese nationalism, a typical complaint from the first, turns out more optimist and open than the first iteration. While it was slighty less succesful economically, the film got a better critical reception as the first one (improving the first's 84% in Rotten Tomatoes with a 92%) and actually got a bigger opening gross. Donnie Yen himself considered it better as well.
    • The third one comes to a only slightly worse critical reception (an 81%) but it enjoyed of an economic success several times bigger than the other two movies put together, launching the production of a possible sequel when it was originally thought as the last installment of the franchise.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Sammo Hung during the filming of the scene where Master Hung is killed by Twister was punched hard in the face to require stitches, among other injuries, which required for him to go to the hospital hours later after the scene was finished.
    • The idea of a imperial general forcing Chinese prisoners to fight him to prove the superiority of his martial arts could sound like the stereotypical Japanese Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy mentality, but that's exactly what Chinese military did with Japanese prisoners during the Sino-Japanese Wars. One of the greatest martial artists in China, Chang Tung Sheng, actually gained his fame by beating prisoners in POW camps.
  • Inferred Holocaust: The first movie concludes the final fight with the spectators overpowering the Japanese guards to get to the wounded hero, then cuts to him being taken to safety and later to his real-life success. What happens to the Foshan townsfolk as a result of the most probable Japanese response is left unknown.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Going up against the Iron Man movies at the box office has led to photoshop mashups of both movies' posters, dubbed with the convenient portmanteau name "Ipron Man".
    • After the first film's release, almost anything involving Donnie Yen will lead to "I want to fight ten" jokes, and for a short time afterwards parodies of the scene made it into various other movies.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Colonel Sato makes it clear very early in his appearance that he is a Smug Snake, but crosses the horizon after he coldly guns down Master Liu for losing an extra round he volunteered for. It is made especially stark because up to then the combat had all been hand-to-hand martial arts fare. Even the General Miura is disgusted by the action.
    • Twister beats Master Hung to death in what is meant to be a exhibition match. Bad as that is, it's not this trope. This trope comes into play in the press conference afterwards. Rather than showing ANY remorse at the press conference held for his innocence, he gleefully mouths off about how he is going to murder every Chinese Warrior in Hong Kong during the next match held to clear his name.
    • Ma King-sang is merely a selfish jerk when he mouths off to his former master and tries to justify leading a gang, and is truly a bastard when he tries to have the school burned down (fortunately no one was inside) in order to secure the property for his boss. Where he truly crosses the line was kidnapping the children and threatening to SELL THEM INTO SLAVERY to force Ip Man to cooperate.
  • Narm: Jin's first appearance in the second film can best be summed up as "Jin charges onto the scene, then starts randomly throwing rather sloppy looking kung-fu moves at a mob of bad guys standing at least two meters away from him". It comes across as silly more than it does anything else.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Bruce Lee, both in the second film as the third one.
  • Signature Scene: Ip Man's fight against the 10 black belts.
  • Spiritual Licensee: Ip Man 2 is more or less like a Foreign Remake of Rocky IV.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Twister brutally beating Master Hung to death.
    • Wing Sing's cancer revelation and her deteriorating condition in the third movie.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Master Hung. He's introduced as being a jerkass to Ip Man, and while he Took a Level in Kindness, his fight to the death leads many viewers losing sympathy for him, as he's knowingly allowing himself to be killed just to make a statement, leaving his children fatherless.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?:
    • Barely averted because Hiroyuki Ikeichi does a convincing performance as Miura, but the oddity remains in that, if you are a casting director looking for a guy to play a karate master, you are not supposed to choose an actor with a background in judo.
    • Originally, for Ip Man 3, the producers of the film wanted to use a 3D - generated version of Bruce Lee in order to portray the legendary founder of Jeet Kune Do. Their reasoning being that they felt a real actor couldn't do the actual role justice. The response to the announcement was, to say the least, explosive, with both domestic and foreign viewers outraged at the decision to do so. Suffice to say, the decision was quickly rescinded.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/IPMan