Dorian's Movie Reviews

Is it worth seeing? Reviews are presented with no cynicism, no comparisons, no biased standards, no pretentiousness - every movie is reviewed on its individual entertainment value including technical presentation.  
Scale 1 - 5
The One
2001, Columbia
Directed by James Wong
Written by Glen Morgan and James Wong

Parallel universes abound in this action movie, with individual versions of the same person in every one. Gabriel Yulaw (Jet Li), a police agent enforcing the rules in these multi-verses, finds that if he kills his alter-version in another universe he absorbs the abilities of that person. Heady with power, he has gone on a killing spree, and is being chased by two other agents, Roedecker (Delroy Lindo) and Funsch (Jason Statham).

We get another glimpse of Jet Li's acting ability in this film, as well as another huge dose of his martial arts prowess. Li plays Gabriel, a megalomaniac killer who takes great pleasure in killing multiple versions of himself, and also plays the main victim, Gabe, who doesn't understand the very strange things that are happening to him as the other unseen universes empower him... and try to kill him. Touching scenes are played by Li opposite Gabe's wife, T.K. (Carla Gugino), who is protective of Gabe to a fault.

The plot is unique and interesting, and it is fun watching Li fighting himself. The acting by Li, Lindo, and Statham, the unique plot, and the special effects save this movie from B level. Jet Li, in my opinion, is capable of much finer performances than he is being given. There is a lot of wire work which is used to good effect, and well integrated into the story, so it isn't overused.

Better writing would have improved this story. I give this one three spotlights out of a possible five for the acting, special effects, unique plot (writing), editing, directing, set design, martial arts choreography, and cinematography. It carries a PG-13 rating. Enjoy!

- Dorian


  • 5 Spotlights: The best of movie making, well worth seeing
  • 4 Spotlights: Good movie for the genre; may have minor technical or story problems but they hardly harm the enjoyment; clearly worth seeing; (most movies)
  • 3 Spotlights: Not bad, but has problems - worth seeing
  • 2 Spotlights: Caution - a "B" movie, probably will appeal only to some
  • 1 Spotlight: Caution - not recommended for any audience (will probably never be given)

Note: No half spotlights are given.

My reviews are not based much on my personal taste, or any standard besides entertainment value. I try to be as objective as possible, keeping in mind that entertainment value is very subjective and individualized. If I'm not interested in a movie I usually don't go see it, so it doesn't get reviewed. Each character, and each position in the production company might be highlighted if the contribution affected the enjoyment of the story as either outstanding or dismal and I noticed it, keeping in mind that many contributions are singularly distinguished by their seamless integration with the story, not calling attention to themselves and thereby escaping attention.

- Dorian Scott Cole

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