The Why of Tai Chi: Modern America Looks to Ancient China

Movie Information

The Why of Tai Chi plays for one show only at 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 2, at Fine Arts Theatre.
Genre: Documentary
Director: Bruce Kennedy
Starring: Bruce Kennedy, Larry Brown, Frank Paolillo, Jan Gillespie, Nancy Moore, Derek Croley
Rated: NR

Of interest on the local filmmaking front is Bruce Kennedy’s The Why of Tai Chi: Modern America Looks to Ancient China (2008), a documentary about, yes, Tai Chi. Kennedy—with the help of a variety of Tai Chi experts—explores the history and meaning behind Tai Chi through interviews, illustration and scenes of Tai Chi being practiced. As filmmaking, The Why of Tai Chi is undeniably slickly done, though the sound recording often leaves something to be desired. It’s a good-looking film all the way around, but it’s also a little too much like an hour-long commercial for Tai Chi for my taste. The results are a documentary the interest level of which is going to be entirely dependent on the viewer’s interest in the subject.

About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress from December 2000 until his death in June 2016. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

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