Yue Song is the writer, director, action director, and editor of "The King of the Streets." He's obviously taking a Jackie Chan-like approach with this film, which is also probably a project that's very close to his heart. Unfortunately, "The King of the Streets" is nothing to boast about.
As you can likely already foresee, "The King of the Streets" wants to wow you with action over everything else. The story is lacking in every sense of the word. It's extremely cliché and predictable; a reformed rebel trying to turn his life around is sucked by into the world he tried to leave behind. The film also repeatedly references Bruce Lee not only in name but in presentation as well as "The King of the Streets" makes it a point to constantly re-use and or re-imagine the Japanese school fighting scene from "The Chinese Connection."
You begin to question the logic Feng has, as well. Who in their right mind would confidently walk up to 85 guys with weapons and try to fight them all at once? "The King of the Streets" wastes little time making itself a victim of a martial art film stereotype as it has that one noteworthy scene where you see the silhouette of the main character training on the roof as the sun rises and has an even more intense training session during a montage later on. The film tries to portray Feng as the guy everyone underestimates; he just got out of prison so no one will hire him, he doesn't really have any friends, and when he does finally get hired by somebody his co-workers constantly talk down to him. But as soon as they get into trouble it's Feng to the rescue.
While it is impressive that Yue Song wears so many hats when it comes to "The King of the Streets," the fruits of his labor are mostly sour grapes at best. The writing is lousy ("Don't worry. Hope is right around the corner."), the action is mostly Yue Song taking people out with one kick over and over again, and the direction of the film stumbles over two left feet. Characters tend to just be dropped without a proper write-out like Feng's co-workers at the moving company or Feng's friend he first meets up with after getting out of prison.
The editing gets really bothersome though like just in the first five minutes alone. The action film has an infatuation with the slow-motion effect as it's used redundantly while Feng does meaningless things like walking next to a chain link fence or putting on his super awesome motorcycle jacket. The opening fight may have been halfway decent if it wasn't ruined by awkward slow-motion and editing. Another bizarre effect is where the last frame of a scene is frozen and transitioned to gray scale as you hear this loud "TUNG!" sound.
Yue Song is obviously a talented martial artist and looks to have tried his absolute best to make "The King of the Streets" work as a hard-hitting action film, but it really doesn't work on any level thanks to its shoddy writing, unimaginative direction, oafish editing, and the way it seems to live and breathe on slow-motion.