Action Movie Fanatix Review: The One

In Order To Save The Universe, He Will Have To Fight The Fiercest Enemy He Has Ever Faced… Himself.

Starring: Jet Li, Jason Statham, Delroy Lindo, Carla Gugino, Dean Norris

Fight Director: Cory Yuen

Director: James Wong

2001  |  87 Minutes  |  PG-13

“After this there will be only one.” – Gabriel YuLaw

I haven’t watched The One in quite some time.  I went through a BIG Jet Li phase back in the early 2000s and I just remembered how horribly cheesy the music was.  I didn’t remember incorrectly but the action was so much better than I had remembered.

Gabriel YuLaw (Jet Li) is a former officer of the Multiverse Authority, an agency who polices interdimensional travel.  YuLaw is bouncing from dimension to dimension killing the different versions of himself each time getting stronger and stronger.  YuLaw escapes MVA custody and travels to his last target, Gabe Law.  MVA agents Rodecker (Delroy Lindo) and Funsch (Jason Statham) follow in an attempt to apprehend YuLaw.

The One is like a time traveling Highlander storyline.  Instead of killing other immortals in this timeline YuLaw is traveling to different dimensions killing all of the other versions of himself.  This even includes some pretty hysterical looking versions such as a dreadlocked version and a blonde Swedish version.

The One does have some excellent fight scenes which combine Jet Li’s always phenomenal martial arts with the bullet time effects from the Matrix  and many other movies since.  The best part is that it doesn’t simply copy that which came before.  The One offers a fresh approach to its action.

Fight director, Cory Yuen and Jet Li decided to give Gabriel YuLaw & Gabe Law two distinctly different forms of martial arts.  It’s a great technique and really shows Jet Li’s versatility.  The only times where wire work is used is when they needed to show how much more powerful Li’s characters had become

The teleportation effects have a really cool look and even after a good 11+ years still look realistic.  Or at least as realistic as a body being ripped apart in one dimension and reassembled in another can look.

The music is horrible from the first second Let The Bodies Hit The Floor kicks in, through Down With The Sickness all the way through the final fight between the Jet Lis which features Papa Roach’s Blood Brothers with lyrics that say “it’s in our nature to kill ourselves.”  Hopefully they made a ton of money on the CD sales for the soundtrack to make the annoyance worth it.  It really shows how important good music really is though.  The soundtrack for The One actually completely ruined this movie for me for years prior to this viewing.

The One was definitely better than I had remembered.  The music is still terrible but doesn’t completely ruin the movie for me anymore.  I am glad I finally got around to giving it another shot.