League of Gods (or Fengshen Bang if you prefer) is an upcoming Chinese action-fantasy movie starring Bingbing Fan (who Western audiences last saw as Blink in X-Men: Days of Future Past) and the martial arts legend that is Jet Li.
The official plot synopsis is as follows:
Based on the 16th-century Chinese novel Fengshen Yanyi (The Investiture of the Gods), the story tells of how King Zhou of Shang becomes a tyrant due to the wiles of Daji, a vixen spirit who is disguised as one of his concubines.
Which doesn’t tell us much, so I’ve brazenly copy/pasted the plot from Wikipedia:
The novel is a romanticised retelling of the overthrow of King Zhòu, the last ruler of the Shang dynasty, by Ji Fa, who would establish the Zhōu dynasty in its place. The story integrates oral and written tales of many Chinese mythological figures who are involved in the struggle as well. These figures include human heroes, immortals and various spirits (usually represented in avatar form like vixens, and pheasants, and sometimes inanimate objects such as a pipa).
Bewitched by his concubine Daji, who is actually a vixen spirit in disguise as a beautiful woman, King Zhou of Shang oppresses his people and persecutes those who oppose him, including his own subjects who dare to speak up to him. Ji Fa (King Wu of Zhou), assisted by his strategist Jiang Ziya, rallies an army to overthrow the tyrant and restore peace and order.
Throughout the story, battles are waged between the kingdoms of Shang and Zhou, with both sides calling upon various supernatural beings – deities, immortals, demons, spirits, and humans with magical abilities – to aid them in the war. Yuanshi Tianzun bestows upon Jiang Ziya the Fengshen Bang, a list that empowers him to invest the gods of Heaven. The heroes of Zhou and some of their fallen enemies from Shang are eventually endowed with heavenly ranking and essentially elevated to their roles as gods, hence the title of the novel.
I’m honestly at a loss for words after watching this trailer. I’ve been sitting here for a few minutes and all I can come up with are a few short phrases like “what did I just watch?”, “what the hell is going on?”, “this looks bats**t insane!”, “did that baby just poop everyone off him?”.
I want to watch this right damn now because it looks like an absolute spectacle of visuals, action and whatthef**kery. Was that a giant crab?
What do you think?
League of Gods will be released in the US on 29 July. Directed by Koan Hui, it stars Bingbing Fan, Jet Li, Xiaoming Huang, Louis Koo and Tony Ka Fai Leung.
Last Updated: July 15, 2016