Master Z: Ip Man Legacy

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Master Z: Ip Man Legacy
Master Z: Ip Man Legacy Poster
Movie poster
Directed byYuen Woo-ping
Produced byRaymond Wong
Donnie Yen
Written byEdmond Wong
StarringMax Zhang
Dave Bautista
Liu Yan
Xing Yu
Michelle Yeoh
Tony Jaa
Music byDay Tai
Orange Sky Golden Harvest
Mandarin Motion Pictures
Enlight Pictures
Young Enlight Productions
Distributed byUniversal Studios (USA)
Release date
  • 20 December 2018 (2018-12-20) (Hong Kong)
  • 21 December 2018 (2018-12-21) (China)
CountryHong Kong
Budget$28 million[1]
Box office$19.7 million[2]

Master Z: Ip Man Legacy (Chinese: 葉問外傳:張天志) is a 2018 Chinese martial arts film directed by Yuen Woo-ping and produced by Raymond Wong and Donnie Yen. It is a spin-off of the Ip Man film series, and takes place after the 2015 film Ip Man 3. This film stars Max Zhang, Dave Bautista and Liu Yan, and was released on 21 December 2018.[3][4]


After being defeated by Ip Man, Cheung Tin Chi lives a depressed life and stays low profile, moonlighting as a mercenary briefly, before choosing to leave behind the world of martial arts, and to operate a grocery store. While on a delivery run, he runs into the opium addict Nana, who is in debt to Tso Sai Kit, and her friend Julia, who are fleeing from Kit. He ends up fighting with Kit's gang and defeats the whole gang single-handedly.

The police arrive and arrest everyone. Kit and his gang are released due to the police commissioner being corrupt, while Nana and Julia are released by name-dropping Julia's brother, Fu, the owner of Gold Bar operating on Bar Street. Tin Chi is eventually released too.

Following the incident, Kit decides to seek out Tin Chi, with his whole gang setting his shop house on fire one night. Tin Chi barely escapes alive with his son, while being pursued by the gang and Sadi, a hired assassin. He is offered shelter at Fu's home by Julia, and works at Gold Bar to pay his rent.

Angered by the injuries to his son, Tin Chi retaliates and sets Kit's opium den on fire. Kit's sister, Kwan, the head of the syndicate wishing to transition to legal businesses, prevents Kit from taking revenge and visits Tin Chi at the Gold Bar to pay him to drop the matter, but Tin Chi refuses the money, impressing Kwan. At the same time, Tin Chi forges an increasingly close friendship with Fu over their common martial arts past.

Kit, attempting to escape from the shadows of his sister Kwan, decides to move into drug dealing with his friend, peddling drugs on Bar Street for Owen Davidson, who uses his restaurant as a front for his drug business. Tin Chi tips off Kwan about the business, who requests for time to settle the matter with Kit.

After finding Nana in a back alley, Kit and his gang kill Nana by forcing her to overdose on heroin. Tin Chi and Fu fight their way to the syndicate's headquarters, where they fight with Kit and Kwan. Kwan, attempting to placate them, cuts off Kit's right arm and forces him to reveal the drug storage. Fu then exposes the drugs to the media.

In return, Davidson has corrupt police officers set up Fu on a false drug charge. After arresting him, they hand Fu over to Davidson to be killed in an unfair fight. Subsequently, following the discovery that Davidson murdered Fu, Tin Chi gets himself into a fight with Davidson, during which he regains his confidence in using Wing Chun for good.

The police commissioner attempts to arrest Tin Chi but is in turn arrested by his lieutenant Fai for corruption. Davidson attempts to escape in the ensuing chaos, but is assassinated by Sadi, who had been hired by Kwan before leaving Hong Kong with Kit.

Soon after, Tin Chi reunites with his son and Julia as they eat a meal together in Julia's home.


  • Max Zhang as Cheung Tin Chi, a former Wing Chun master who was defeated by Ip Man in a duel behind closed doors, and subsequently becomes a mercenary
  • Dave Bautista as Owen Davidson, the leader of a drug smuggling syndicate, who also runs a restaurant.
  • Liu Yan as Julia
  • Xing Yu as Fu, Julia's brother and former martial artist, who now owns the Gold Bar on Bar Street.
  • Michelle Yeoh as Tso Ngan Kwan, the leader of the Cheung Lok organised crime gang, who wants to turn the gang into a legitimate business entity, and the elder sister of Tso Sai Kit.
  • Tony Jaa as Sadi the warrior (special cameo appearance)
  • Kevin Cheng as Tso Sai Kit, younger brother of Tso Ngan Kwan, who initially runs an opium den, before becoming a drug peddler behind his sister's back at Bar Street.
  • Chrissie Chau as Nana, an opium addict and close friend of Julia
  • Patrick Tam as Ma King-sang, local Triad leader and former martial arts disciple.
  • Brian Thomas Burrell as a Senior Police officer
  • Philip Keung as Officer Fai, a Hong Kong police officer who has doubts working under his British supervisors.
  • Yuen Wah Special Guest Appearance

Home media[edit]

The film was released in North America on DVD and Blu-ray by Well Go USA entertainment on 23 July 2019. In its first week of release, it sold 11,940 DVDs and 18,446 Blu-rays, with total estimated sales of $430,000.


The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported that 89% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 35 reviews, with an average rating of 6.59/10. The site's critics consensus reads, "Master Z: Ip Man Legacy marks a departure from previous entries in the franchise — but its thrilling action set pieces remain every bit as satisfying."[5] At Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 72 out of 100 based on 14 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[6] Elizabeth Kerr of The Hollywood Reporter wrote, "Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy doesn't have much on its mind besides delivering on fights — and in that aspect it succeeds."[7] Edmund Lee of South China Morning Post wrote that "Master Z is undoubtedly a feast for martial arts movie lovers", and gave the film 3.5 of 5 stars.[8]


In April 2019, it was reported that Max Zhang is set to reprise his role in a sequel to Master Z: Ip Man Legacy. The sequel is reported to be taking a budget cut, down to $13 million, from the first film's budget of $28 million.[9][10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Frater, Patrick (5 October 2018). "Busan: Hot Titles at the Asian Film Market". Variety. Archived from the original on 7 October 2018. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  2. ^ "Ye Wen hui chuan: Zhang Tianzhi (2018)". BytheNumbers. Retrieved 6 July 2019.
  3. ^ "《叶问外传:张天志》定档12.21".
  4. ^ "叶问系列最新电影《叶问外传:张天志》即将上映". Retrieved 25 October 2018.
  5. ^ "Master Z: Ip Man Legacy (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved 25 August 2019.
  6. ^ "Master Z: Ip Man Legacy Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 25 August 2019.
  7. ^ Kerr, Elizabeth (12 October 2018). "'Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy' ('Ye wen wai zhuan: zhang tian zhi'): Film Review | Busan 2018". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 1 November 2018.
  8. ^ Lee, Edmund (20 December 2018). "Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy film review". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
  9. ^ Vo, David (27 April 2019). "MAX ZHANG To Return For MASTER Z Sequel". MAActionCinema. Retrieved 26 September 2019.
  10. ^ Bona, JJ (26 April 2019). "Max Zhang to return for 'Master Z: Ip Man Legacy' Part II". City on Fire. Retrieved 26 September 2019.

External links[edit]