Ip Man 4: The Finale is a 2019 Chinese martial arts film directed by Wilson Yip and produced by Raymond Wong. It is the fourth and final film of the Ip Man series in the life of the the Wing Chun grandmaster of the same name and features Donnie Yen reprising the role. The film began production in April 2018 and ended on July 2018. It was re,eased on December 20, 2019 for Hong Kong and the 25th for the United States.
Plot[edit | edit source]
In 1964, following the death of his wife, Ip Man discovers he has throat cancer due to smoking. After his rebellious son Ip Ching fights back against a bully and is expelled from school, Ip decides to travel to San Francisco in order to look for study opportunities, asking his friend Bo to keep an eye on his son. His student, Bruce Lee, has upset the martial arts community in San Francisco by opening a Win Chun school, teaching non-Chinese people martial arts and writing an English-language book on martial arts. He discovers from an associate and his friend Liang Gen that, because he is a foreigner, a referral letter from the Chinese Consolidated Benevolant Association is needed to enroll into school. Grandmaster Wan Zhong-hua, the association's president, refuses to write a letter as Ip is unbothered by Lee's actions, whereas the other grandmasters are against him. After a brief confrontation with Wan(resulting in a broken table top), he leaves.
While leaving the school after a meeting with the principle, he chances on Wan's teenage daughter, Yonah, undergoing racist violence against a rival cheerleader, Becky, and her male friends. Yonah fights back somewhat(with Becky accidentally cutting herself on a pair of scissors) but she is ultimately outnumbered, and Ip steps in to rescue her. He escorts Yonah home, where Wan accuses Ip of using his daughter to get the letter and challenges him to a fight for it. The duel is interrupted by an earthquake, and Wan tells Ip they will finish their fight at the upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival. Ip refuses, explaining that he merely accompanied Yonah home for her own safety, and leaves.
Becky lies to her parents, claiming that she has been bullied. Her father Walters, an officer of the Immigration and Naturalization Service(INS), is pressured into holding the Chinese Consolidated Benevolant Association responsible and deporting all Chinese associated with them. Meanwhile, Hartman, a Staff Sergeant in the United States Marines and student of Bruce Lee, attempts to convince Barton Geddes, the Gunnery Sergeant on his base, to incorporate Chinese martial arts into their hand-to-hand combat training. Geddes, an arrogant and openly racist man, proves the Marines' current Karate training superior by having Hartman fight the Marines' Karate instructor, Colin Frater, who defeats him. Hartman later manages to convince the unit's commanding officer of Kung Fu's potential, and is instructed to film the Mid-Autumn Festival happening at the association for research purposes, infuriating Geddes.
Geddes instructs Frater to challenge the grandmasters at the festival. Frater proves his strength by defeating three grandmasters until Ip arrives and beats him badly, hospitalizing him. Meanwhile, Wan, who was supposed to be present at the festival, is arrested by the immigration officers. Upon seeing Frater in the hospital, Geddes barges into the association to find where Wan is. Revealing his own martial arts prowess, he brutally defeats all the grandmasters present. He then threatens Walters to release Wan into the Marines' custody before bringing Wan into the camp to fight him. Due to a tip-off by Billy, a subordinated of Walters and another student of Lee, the association is empty by the time the immigration officers conduct their raid. Lee provides refugee for the association, gaining their respect.
Wan and Geddes right at the Marines' camp. At first, Wan was able to match Geddes' blows, but is eventually overwhelmed and seriously injured. An emotional Ip reveals to Bo that he has cancer, which finally compels Ip Ching to talk to his father over the phone, after many failed attempts by Ip. Ip is brought into the Marines' camp by Hartman, and ultimately defeats Geddes in a long and savage fight.
Wan prepares the referral letter for Ip, but the latter explains that he does not intend to move to San Francisco, having realized America is not what he imagined. Ip reconciles with his son after returning. A weary but determined Ip instructs his son to film him as he demonstrates Wing Chun in the wooden dummy.
In 1972, Ip succumbs to his cancer at the age of 79, and Lee pays respect to his master at the funeral. An epilogue reveals that the Marines officially incorporated Chinese martial arts into their training in 2001.