‘The Monkey King’ Review – Joke Filled Flick Is An Acquired Taste

Animated feature, which features the voices of Jimmy O. Yang and Bowen Yang, hits Netflix August 18.


One movie we didn’t cover this week on CinemAddicts was The Monkey King. It hits Netflix on Friday, August 18 and the good news is that I absolutely recommend the movie. But there is a caveat . . .

THE MONKEY KING – (L-R) MONKEY KING (Jimmy O. Yang) and LIN (voiced by Jolie Hoang-Rappaport). Cr: Netflix © 2023

Directed by Anthony Stacchi (The Boxtrolls, Open Season), The Monkey King centers on a sarcastic Monkey (Jimmy O. Yang) who has unstoppable power thanks to a magical fighting stick. His goal is to defeat 100 demons and acquire immortality. Jolie Hoang-Rappaport is the voice of Lin, a young village girl who becomes the Monkey King’s loyal assistant.

Unfortunately, the Monkey King is a selfish and narcissistic individual, and his quest for power is borne out of greed and a lack of love. It’s up to Lin to turn his attitude around before he becomes a threat to the world and the gods that rule over him. The Dragon King, the film’s main antagonist, is voiced by Bowen Yang and BD Wong is the voice of Buddha.

THE MONKEY KING – (L-R) MONKEY KING (Jimmy O. Yang) and WANGMU (voiced by Jodi Long). Cr: Netflix © 2023

This animated film goes a mile a minute with the jokes, and cinephiles who don’t appreciate rapid fire humor may check out of The Monkey King. Stephen Chow, best known for Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer, is an executive producer and the film has a bit of his influence. Like Chow, The Monkey King is an acquired taste, and by the 50-minute mark I was a bit wearied by the joke filled and fast paced storytelling.

But that was just for a brief moment, and ultimately I enjoyed the movie’s action-packed and take no prisoners style. Check out my full review of The Monkey King on YouTube:

The Monkey King hits Netflix on August 18. Comment below and share your thoughts on the movie!

On our latest CinemAddicts episode, we review Dead Shot, Birth/Rebirth, and The Last Voyage of the Demeter:

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