Jet Li as The Monkey King

Jet Li as The Monkey King

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The Monkey King Asian Superman

Monkey King (or Sunwukong) was born from a stone. He wanted to be like the immortals and be free from death. He was extremely smart and capable, and learned all the magic tricks from a master Taoist. He could transform himself into seventy-two different images such as a tree, a bird, a beast of prey, or a bug as small as a mosquito so as to sneak into an enemy's belly to fight him or her inside out. Using clouds as a vehicle, he can travel 180,000 miles a single somersault.

He claimed to be king in defiance of the Great Emperor of Jade—the only authority over heaven, the seas, the earth, and the subterranean world. That act of high treason invited the relentless scourge of the Heavenly army. After many showdowns, the dove faction of the heavenly court persuaded the emperor to offer the monkey an official title to appease him. The monkey accepted this offer on a trial basis. However, he learned a few days later that he was cheated and being jeered all over the heavenly court: the position he held was nothing but a stable keeper. Enraged, he revolted, fighting his way back to earth to resume his own claim as a king.

Eventually, the heavenly army subdued him, only after many a battle, with the help of all the god warriors. However, all methods of execution failed. One attempt to kill him actually gave him a pair of fiery golden crystal eyes that can see through what people normally cannot.

At last, the emperor asked Buddha for help. The Buddha moved a great mountain known as the Mount of Five Fingers to fall upon him. Still, the tenacious monkey survived the enormous weight and pressure, except he could not move! Five hundred years later, there came to his rescue the monk Tripitaka. To insure that Tripitaka could make the journey to the West to get the Buddhist scriptures, Buddha had arranged for the Monkey King to become his disciple and escort him, along with two other disciples they later came across. There the four started their stormy journey west which was packed with actions and adventures.

Monkey, the monk, Pigsy, and Sandy work their way to the Western Paradise and the Buddhist sutras. Tall mountains, deep rushing rivers, and evil demons lie ahead. But Monkey is brave and smart, and he even learns to behave. They know this is an important mission. As many years pass, they learn to face challenges by working together. When a task is too hard, the goddess Guan Yin helps out. After traveling for 14 years and 108,000 miles, Monkey and his friends reach the Western Paradise. Buddha gives them the sacred sutras to take back to China. Buddha knows that the travelers suffered on the journey, but they also learned something new about themselves. Plus, they each earned merit for doing good deeds. Buddha rewards them for their loyalty and hard work—with immortal life and happiness.

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