Ask Matt Damon why he chooses the movies he chooses, and he will tell you that it has nothing to do with the script and everything to do with the director. The Great Wall gives Matt Damon the opportunity to work with Chinese director Zhang Yimou, the incredible director of Hero, House of Flying Daggers and Curse of the Golden Flower. These are not “Matt Damon movies,” however, and neither is The Great Wall.
It’s Zhang Yimou first American movie, and it’s a $150 million co-production between China and America, which makes it a big deal because China and America are the two biggest box-office markets in the world. If you’re wondering what Matt Damon’s character is doing at the Great Wall of China, it’s because he plays a European mercenary who is detained by Chinese soldiers. And if you’re wondering what Matt Damon is doing in a monster movie set at the Great Wall of China, I can’t answer that for you.
It’s a weird combination, but I can’t say that it doesn’t pique my interest.
Pedro Pascal, Willem Dafoe, Andy Lau, and Lu Han also star, because they are clearly trying to appeal to as many nationalities as possible.
Wouldn’t it be awesome, though, if Matt Damon died in the first act and Andy Lau ended up being the real hero of the film?