Singaporean film critic Genevieve Loh of Channel NewsAsia wrote, "Ip Man 2 delivers. Perhaps not as action-packed with dignified choreography as showcased by its excellent predecessor, this installment is nonetheless still exciting, if a tad one-dimensional." James Marsh of Twitch Film praised the film, writing, "Ip Man 2 looks fantastic and does a grand job of evoking the period authentically, lending the film a much-appreciated sense of dramatic gravitas." Joy Fang, a critic for online news portal AsiaOne wrote, "While not as big a movie as the first one, which focuses on heartbreaking and intense issues arising from the Japanese occupation in China, this film evokes Chinese pride with its strong cultural roots." Ho Yi, of the Taipei Times wrote, "Despite its plot holes, the Ip Man series has potential and recalls the 1990s' Once Upon a Time in China franchise starring Jet Li." Amir Hafizi of The Malay Mail praised Sammo Hung's martial arts choreography: "With fluid movements intricate interplay between contrasting martial styles and gorgeous sequences, kung fu fans will definitely get their eye-balls' worth here as this time around, the introduction of Western boxing into the mix makes for some interesting choreography." Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times awarded Ip Man 2 three stars out of four, writing, "In its direct and sincere approach, it's a rebuke to the frenzied editing that reduces so many recent action movies into incomprehensible confusion."
Darcy Paquet of Screen Daily had mixed opinions of the film. He wrote that the film's performances and fight sequences "should ensure decent theatrical runs." Paquet concluded his review by writing, "Ultimately, the film's energy and humour overcome cartoonishly bad performances from the British actors and an utter lack of surprises in the final two reels." Amanda Foo of The UrbanWire awarded the film two stars out of five, writing in her review, "It's no surprise that Donnie Yen isn't willing to sign up for any more Ip Man movies, with the shameless repetition that is happening in these films, even the most ardent fan would be tired." Matt Prigge of Metro New York stated in 2016, "There are gobs of films about Ip Man [...] Of these, the three films starring Donnie Yen are the trashiest; the second one is basically a remake of Rocky IV." 2b1af7f3a8