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« on: March 06, 2007, 02:39:10 PM »

ANONYMOUS HEROES, THE 1970-The Godfather of HK Action Cinema Chang Cheh directed this somewhat lighthearted romp about three small time con artists, David Chiang, Ti Lung and Ching Li who end up helping revolutionaries smuggle guns from the military. There is even a train heist that plays out like a western which this film has been compared to. Only some poor miniature work when the train is derailed into a river does the film falter. The ending becomes deadly serious when the three heroes (two heroes and one heroine) are trapped by the military. They hold off hundreds of soldiers with bullets and bayonets before buying it in traditional Chang style, hand in hand and covered in blood. A final shot shows them ascending a hill in slow motion apparently in the afterworld.

ALL MEN ARE BROTHERS 1973-The bombastic sequel to Chang’s classic THE WATER MARGIN, a famous 100+ volume known as OUTLAWS OF THE MARSH in China. This sequel features the 7 main heroes seeking amnesty from the Emperor who will grant it if they are able to topple a rebellious General by infiltrating his fortress and destroying his vast militia. The bulk of the film is a series of extravagant Last Stands where the heroes fight off hordes of soldiers and various military fighters.  One of the bloodiest action movies of all time. Severely cut during its US and HK release to the point that the fate of some of the main characters was not shown. Also, many of the gorier moments were in B/W (US version) to cloak the volume of red on display. The recent HK disc is the most complete with the B/W scenes in color.

AVENGING EAGLE 1978-Heavy classic about an evil bandit and his 13 killers called the Iron Boat Clan who rob, pillage and murder. One of their members leaves the clan only to be pursued by the others. He is joined by a mysterious fighter who helps him on his quest to get revenge against the bandit leader. The story is told in several flashbacks until the elaborate and fantastic finale where the mystery man’s identity is revealed. The final moments are brilliant. Directed by the David Lean of HK, Sun Chung, hands down one of the greatest directors ever in HK. Ti Lung delivers one of his best performances and heartthrob Fu Sheng delivers one of his most serious as the mystery man with the double blades attached to his wrists.

AUDITION 1999-Takashi Miike’s most famous movie about a heart broken man who has lost his wife and attempts to meet someone new by staging a fake audition. He ultimately makes a VERY BAD decision in his choice of woman. The final 30 minutes will have you squirming in your seat.

ARMOUR OF GOD 1986-Jackie Chan’s version of INDIANA JONES. Chan almost died during production when a stunt which went fine the first time, was tried again resulting in Chan falling 30 feet onto a rock. He has a hole in his head from the accident. As a result, Chan’s hair style changes from time to time. Some really good fight scenes.

A MAN CALLED HERO 1994-Modern day take on the popular HK comic book THE BLOOD SWORD.

ADVENTURES OF ZATOICHI 1964-Haven’t seen yet.

A DEADLY SECRET 1980-Yue Hua in a rare villainous role keeping an innocent man imprisoned torturing him in many elaborate and painful ways in an attempt to get him to reveal the location of a vast treasure. The storyline goes much deeper in revealing character motives and double crosses. Directed by Mou Tien Fu who would direct the infamously nasty MEN BEHIND THE SUN.

ASSASSIN, THE 1967-Quite possibly Chang Cheh’s greatest achievement about a poor man who wants to become famous for helping his country. His clan is wiped out by traitors leaving only him and his brother alive. He is taken in by a rich diplomat who hires him out to assassinate the villainous usurper. He manages to infiltrate the enemy stronghold and carry out the assassination but not before killing himself maiming his body beyond recognition so as to save his family and loved ones from execution. A rarity for Cheh as the film focuses equally on the machismo as well as the romantic aspects of the story. Highly recommended.


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« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2007, 02:40:17 PM »

ANGRY GUEST, THE 1970-Entertaining sequel to DUEL OF FISTS is better than the first about Ti Lung’s character enraging a Japanese Yakuza played by the director himself, Chang Cheh. A rare modern day when most action films were period films.

AMBITIOUS KUNG FU GIRL, THE 1982-A feisty young woman is in love with a famous kung fu fighter. When she finally meets him, he’s not as dashing and chivalrous as she was led to believe. She is captured by the villains and a young pauper who is in love with her, comes to the rescue. A light hearted kung fu comedy with some great choreography. Directed by Japanese influenced HK director Lu Chin Ku.

AMBUSH 1969-A famous constable hired to protect a gold shipment, is ambushed and the gold stolen. He is framed for the robbery and must fight to clear his name against betrayers, gold digging women, a mysterious hired swordsman and the police force, some of which are after the money themselves. Features a great and bloody final fight in and around a windmill.

ALONG COMES THE TIGER 1977-Poor kung fu remake of Leone’s ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST. The only saving grace is the performance of famous HK performer Don Wong Tao who also delivers an exciting and informative commentary track detailing his career from working with Chuck Norris to Hwang Jang Lee to his falling out with producer Ng See Yuen.

BLOOD BROTHERS, THE 1973-Chang Cheh’s award winning classic about a doomed triangle of friends that is destroyed by a woman at its center. A true story about the rise of one of the friends to a high position in the military who murders his blood brother to gain his wife. David Chiang is the level headed friend who decides to assassinate his best friend then turns himself in to accept his fate. The entire film is told in flashback as Chiang recounts before a judge what he has done culminating in his execution.

BUDDHA’S PALM 1982-Loony but accurate live action version of the popular HK comic book THE FORCE OF BUDDHA’S PALM. Constant special effects and light hearted action throughout.

BAMBOO HOUSE OF DOLLS, THE 1974-Shaw’s contribution to the Women-in-Prison genre. Here, Lo Lieh plays an undercover Japanese officer in a Nippon concentration camp where torture and cruelty is the order of the day. Lots of action and one damn fine prison break by car. The final 1/3 deals with a chase through the jungle and a big battle with revolutionaries and a cave of buried treasure! An international cast of German, Swedish and Chinese lovelies fill out the cast. From Kuei Chi Hung, Shaw’s resident crime thriller-horror director. One of the best and most violent movies Jack Hill never directed.

BOXER FROM SHANTUNG, THE 1972-Chang Cheh’s major classic about a refugee who longs to be famous and wealthy by his own means. He ultimately achieves fame by intervening in a gang war between two rival factions in turn of the century Shanghai. Eventually, his righteous attitude is toppled when the villains stage an ambush inside a gambling house resulting in the most bloodily violent final 20 minutes you’re likely to see. The film focuses more on characterization than action. Chen Kuan Tai became a star literally over night. Highly recommended. A sequel was shot and released the same year-THE IRON MAN also starring Chen in a different but similar role. A remake entitled HERO premiered in 96 starring heartthrob Takeshi Kaneshiro. Another remake is in the works.

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« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2007, 02:41:30 PM »

BORN INVINCIBLE 1977-Carter Wong, Thunder in BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA, gets his shot at playing a white haired villain made famous by Lo Lieh in the Shaw blockbuster EXECUTIONERS FROM SHAOLIN. Lo Lieh star here as well a villain alongside Wong. A school is destroyed and the students secretly perfect their skills to challenge the near invincible Wong at the finale.

BUDDHA ASSASSINATOR 1979-Famous kicker Hwang Jang Lee is the main reason to watch this entertaining kung fu actioner with Jacky Chan acolyte Meng Hoi, one of only a few actors who would work alongside Hwang because of vicious kicking ability which he seldom held back on.

BUTTERFLY & SWORD 1993-Elaborate and exciting remake of a Shaw Brothers actioner directed by famous choreographer Ching Su Tung. Michelle Yeoh and Tony Leung star in this spectacular effects laden Wu Xia Pian.

BLACK MASK 1996-Mindless Jet Li sci-fi action with lots of gore and violence. The original HK version is missing all the bloody bits while the ridiculous US version is uncut but laced with an endless and stupid rap soundtrack. Find the recent Taiwanese uncut DVD instead.

BLACK MAGIC 1975-Classic Shaw horror that started a genre specializing in real superstitious beliefs in Malaysia and Singapore. An evil magician casts spells on people then causes those to die horribly that do not pay for his services. A good magician comes to the rescue culminating in an effects laden climax atop a construction site. Cult favorite along with its popular sequel was a grindhouse mainstay.

BAT WITHOUT WINGS 1980-Lesser Chu Yuan film. One of many Ku Lung novelizations Chu would adapt to film. This one features the usual elaborate set design, hidden passageways and a trap filled island. The film would gain some brief notoriety when Gene Simmons attempted to sue over the use of similar make up to the films villain that resembled his Demon get up.  As far as I know nothing came of it.

BRAVE ARCHER, THE 1977-Chang Cheh’s massive adaptation of the famous LEGEND OF THE CONDOR HEROES novels. Three sequels and one unofficial. The 128 minute film tries to cram dozens of characters into its running time that spill over into the equally long second installment. Colorful and character driven movie about two brothers separated at birth one becomes selfish and arrogant while the other goes from one teacher to another learning about life and love as well as learning multiple kung fu styles along the way.

BRAVE ARCHER 2, THE 1978-Kind of boring sequel doesn’t pick up steam until the final 15 minutes. Some sporadic bits of violent action aren’t enough to recommend this sequel.

BRAVE ARCHER 3, THE 1981-Sequel is more of a 5 VENOM film and has the most action of the whole series. Some cool sets and a spectacular final fight against the near invincible villains introduced at the tail end of part 2. A subplot involving the legendary White Haired Devil Woman offers a distraction.

BRAVE ARCHER & HIS MATE, THE 1982-Low budget final film in the series to be directed by Chang Cheh. Here, Fu Sheng who played the same character in the previous films plays a different character here. The action by the remaining Venom crew is the only thing to recommend here.
 
BOXER REBELLION 1975-Chang Cheh’s big budget adaptation of the Boxer Rebellion that took place in the early 1900’s when bands of Chinese revolutionaries, trained and taught to believe they would be impervious to the foreign guns, marched blindly against invasions from Japan, Germany, Britain and Russia among others. The film centers around three brothers who join the Boxers and try to stop their vain suicide missions. Some massive battles and an adrenaline fueled finale where Fu Sheng takes on a squad of armed Japanese soldiers. Richard Harrison who enjoyed himself immensely on this shoot, plays the sympathetic German General. The new DVD is the full length 117 minute version which was butchered during its original release for political reasons.

BATTLE WIZARD, THE 1977-Surprisingly good special effects enhance this adaptation of the famous Chinese literary Fantasy fable DEMI GODS & SEMI DEVILS.

BIG BAD SIS 1976-Semi sequel to BIG BROTHER CHENG. This time, HK exploitation starlet Chen Peng trains a group of  women to fight back against the mob. Chen Kuan Tai’s character from THE TEAHOUSE and BIG BROTHER CHENG shows up during the finale to help out.

BIG BROTHER CHENG 1973-Controversial HK film about the Triads. Chen Kuan Tai is a mobster with a heart of gold running a teahouse that protects the oppressed. More of a drama with modern style action. The HK disc is still cut.

BROTHERS FROM THE WALLED CITY 1982-Grim drama about two brothers living within a city inside of HK, walled off from society where the lower level of civilization resides. Down beat film is brought down by a rushed and abrupt finish.

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« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2007, 02:47:50 PM »

BELLS OF DEATH, THE 1968-Brilliant spaghetti western laced swordsman movie about a group of bandits who brutally massacre a man’s family. He takes the Bells from his dead child’s arm and hunts the killers down one by one, the sound of ringing bells heralding his arrival. Some extravagant sets and marvelous duels, including one during a rain storm and another in a thick bamboo forest.

BASTARD SWORDSMAN, THE 1983-Popular Shaw Brothers production based on the even more popular TV show from the time. A clan vs. clan story about a peasant who is mercilessly abused and picked on. He doesn’t know who his father is but is secretly taught a powerful magical kung fu style that he uses against a rich swordsman who betrays his master. Michael Man steals the film as the chivalrous villain Tu Ku of the Wu Dang Clan who possesses immense power of his own. One of the best HK Action-Fantasies.

BUDO WING 1979-Haven’t watched yet.

BORED HATAMOTO: LETTER OF DEATH, THE TV movie of a famous Japanese film series.

BETRAYAL, THE 1968-Excellent Japanese Samurai drama. A young Samurai is forced into taking the blame for a murder by his superiors only to learn they are not as noble as he once thought. One of Ichikawa Raizo’s best. Haven’t seen it in a long time. Definitely on the rewatch list.
 
BLACK LIZARD, THE 1981-Another elaborate Chu Yuan film with the usual beautiful sets. This one has elements of horror with ghosts, coffins, Bavaesque style lighting and the most excessive use of fog ever.

BLOODY ESCAPE, THE 1974-Sun Chung’s second film was a co-production with Chang Cheh and it’s the latter who’s influence is most apparent. Chen Kuan Tai heads a group of refugee’s who attempt to break out of a bandit stronghold. Good choreography in a decent story but nothing overly special.

BOXER’S OMEN, THE 1983-Totally over the top and insane Shaw Brothers horror flick about a battle between monks and evil magicians. A HK boxer, in a past life, was a twin to a monk who was to attain immortality but it was foiled by black magic. The boxer, who has been experiencing troubles of the supernatural kind, must become a monk and combat evil to save his own life and allow the monk to attain immortality. The special effects range from laughably bad to stunningly surreal. One of the nastiest, disgusting, jaw droppingly amazing movies you’ll ever see. Words cannot describe the experience. I guarantee you’ve never seen anything quite like it. A love it or hate it film.

BROKEN OATH 1977-One of the best Golden Harvest kung fu movies features excellent choreography and an all star cast. A Chinese remake of LADY SNOWBLOOD.

BANDIT VS SAMURAI SQUADRON 1979-Haven’t seen yet.

CLAN FEUDS 1981-Excellent clan vs. clan movie minus the romanticism of the Chu Yuan adaptations. This one has a Romeo & Juliet scenario, some vicious action and an unusual albino villain with a clawed hand and a sword that drains the blood from its victims! Ti Lung and Lo Mang star.

CLANS OF INTRIGUE 1977-Popular Chu Yuan film about a mysterious masked assassin, a villainous monk and a group of beautiful lesbian fighters living in an underground grotto. The HK DVD is missing a nude bathing scene involving the many beautiful girls. One of the earliest releases. The theatrical and festival re-release has the scene re-instated.
CHALLENGE OF THE GAMESTERS 1981-Wong Jing, HK’s millionaire director, directs this funny and inventive James Bond style gambling action comedy a few years before the gambling genre really got big with the GOD OF GAMBLERS series also from Wong Jing and starring Chow Yun Fat.

CHALLENGE OF THE MASTERS 1976-Liu Chia Liang, the greatest director of martial arts adventures directs this tale of growing up and humility about a young man who learns kung fu against his father’s wishes. He is taught to show kindness to his enemies. In a sub plot he nabs a murderer who kills the constable pursuing him. Defeated, the young man shows mercy and the villain turns himself in. Liu Chia Hui (KILL BILL 1 & 2) plays real life hero Wong Fei Hung in his younger years. Jet Li would portray the same character in four of the six ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA films.

CHALLENGE OF DEATH 1976-Indy kung fu flick starring Wong Tao, famous kick boxer Tan Tao Liang and popular screen villain Chang Yi about a police officer after a criminal. The officer ultimately sides with a chivalrous robber to bring the bad guy down. Average film featuring the same crew and stars of the superior HOT, THE COOL & THE VICIOUS.

CANTON IRON KUNG FU 1979-Kung fu flick starring famous kung fu actor “Beardy” Liang Chia Jen.


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« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2007, 02:48:59 PM »

CHINATOWN KID, THE 1977-Chang Cheh movie starring HUGE HK star Alexander Fu Sheng. A remake of his own BOXER FROM SHANTUNG with some added plot points. Here, the poor kid makes good while the rich kid becomes addicted to drugs eventually coming to the rescue of his friend. One of the first kung fu movies to deal with drug addiction, the film was drastically altered for its HK release. The combination of bloody shoot outs with shot guns, gory knifings mixed with drug abuse was thought to be too much for the HK climate of the time so the film was cut down from 120 minutes to 84(!) removing whole scenes and replacing them with alternate sequences and a different “happy” ending where the bad guys are arrested as opposed to the original where everyone ends up dead save for the drug addicted rich guy who saves his friend who, before expiring, gives him his watch, a symbol of wealth and monetary freedom when he was a poor hawker on the streets of HK. Some location shooting in San Francisco.

CALL ME DRAGON 1979-Stupid kung fu comedy is mostly a showcase for real martial artists Bruce Liang (KUNG FU HUSTLE) and Japanese-HK star Yasuaki Kurata. A show stopping 20 minute finale.

CALAMITY OF SNAKES 1993-One of the all time best bad movies sees thousands of snakes unearthed over a future high rise construction site. The snakes are butchered but somehow return to wreck havoc on the buildings occupants. Also a gigantic flying snake that roars like a tiger figures into the plot. A kung fu specialist is brought in to combat the giant snake in an unbelievable sequence. During the anything goes climax, soldiers armed with flame throwers storm the building frying anything that moves.

CRIPPLED AVENGERS 1978-HUGE cult following in this 5 VENOM series entry sees a hero lose his mind after his enemies brutally kill his wife and cripple his son. He fashions his son with Iron Arms and slips into madness crippling anybody that even looks at him wrong. One guy is blinded, another is made a deaf-mute for cursing him, another has his legs chopped off and another has an iron tourniquet applied to his skull turning him into an idiot. The cripples find a teacher who trains them to overcome their handicaps. They then return to avenge themselves on the villain who has taken over the entire town. A number of martial arts experts are attending his birthday party and the heroes must go through them before getting their mitts on the villain and his equally nasty son. A favorite and a perfect starting point for newbies. Started a series of cripple movies in HK. Highly recommended.

CHINESE BOXER, THE 1969-The very first movie to feature empty handed kung fu styles and also the first to show martial arts training sequences before Bruce Lee’s pictures. Swimming champion and future Triad Boss Jimmy Wang Yu (who still has a huge fan following) stars along with Lo Lieh as the Japanese villain. Started the whole Evil School Destroys Good School type of kung fu film that prospered during the 70s. Lots of bloody violence but the production values by the Shaw’s couldn’t be rivaled at the time.

CLAN OF AMAZONS 1978-One of the most complex of Chu Yuan’s Romantic Swordsman movies. Filmic adaptations of famous author Ku Lung. One of 30+ films of this type from Chu Yuan.

CAT VS RAT 1982-A low point in Liu Chia Liang’s career. The choreography is wonderful, the problem lies in the story and the production values are not up to par with the usual Shaw production.

CRAZY SHAOLIN DISCIPLES 1983-A Chinese Shaolin version of ANIMAL HOUSE about a nearly unstoppable villain played by Lo Lieh, after a gold medallion, the symbol of the famous Hung Clan. He pursues real life hero Hung Hsi Kwan, played by Lo Mang and a couple of others chasing them into Shaolin Temple where they become the objects of pranks from the secular monks there. The villain catches up with them during a somewhat bloody finale. Features many popular stars of the time.

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« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2007, 02:49:40 PM »

CONVENT OF THE SACRED BEAST 1974-Japanese nunsploitation movie. Haven’t seen yet.

CRYSTAL FIST 1979-Shaw Brothers-Indy co-production originally to star Jackie Chan. Sort of a remake of DRUNKEN MASTER. Indonesian star Billy Chong is the hero and Chu Tieh Hu, whom the Shaw’s would make a most intimidating bad guy in later films is the baddie here. The fights are top notch.

CLAN OF THE WHITE LOTUS 1979-Popular sequel to Shaw hit EXECUTIONERS FROM SHAOLIN. Here, the White Lotus Chief avenges the death of his classmate, Pai Mei, from the first film and prevents the rebuilding of the destroyed Shaolin Temple. Lo Lieh directs and plays the main villain again. Brilliant choreography by Liu Chia Liang. The recent DVD is one of the most beautiful remasters yet.

CORPSE MANIA 1980-Nasty little horror thriller about a murderer and his infatuation with maggot riddled corpses. The story takes a 180 degree turn late in the game. The finale featuring the murderers execution is quite cold and gloomy.

CONVICT KILLER, THE 1979-More modern than usual Chu Yuan adaptation about a man wrongly imprisoned gets out years later and goes after the villains responsible. A final shocking twist at the finale. Lots of kung fu, gun fu, and knife throwing amidst many elaborate villains and the usual double crosses and subterfuge present in the Ku Lung adaptations. Ti Lung is memorable as the chain wielding killer who fights with the same chains that shackled him in prison. Lots of cool sets and fog (Chu likes his fog!) A crazy final fight in the snow near a wind mill see the two heroes and the main baddie demolishing a huge barn as they beat the holy hell out of each other. Known as IRON CHAIN ASSASSIN in theaters and on television.

CASH CALLS HELL 1969-Classic Hideo Gosha gangster flick featuring real Yakuza. Haven’t seen yet.

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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2007, 02:54:51 PM »

DEATH DUEL 1977- Another popular Chu Yuan movie with a plot too complicated to detail here. The set design is, as always, beautiful to look at. Shaw Brothers. The first film of future award winning filmmaker Erh Tung Sheng aka Derek Yee in a starring role.

DELINQUENT, THE 1974-Chang Cheh  and gritty crime and horror director Kuei Chi Hung co-direct this grimy revenge thriller showcasing modern style action. Starring Wang Chung whose name was used for the 80s band of the same name. Final shot is brilliantly pulled off. Known as STREET GANGS OF HONG KONG in the US. Shaw Brothers.

DUEL OF FISTS 1969-The first film to detail Thailand Kickboxing about David Chiang searching for his lost brother who is a prize fighter in Thailand mixed up with the mob. The Chinese Charles Bronson Chen Sing plays Mr. Big. Shaw Brothers.

DUEL, THE 1971-Stunning Chinese gangster epic from Chang Cheh. Here, his Japanese influence is in evidence. One of the best ever. Heavy classic released in butchered form as DUEL OF THE IRON FIST in the US. The Iron Triangle, the name given to director Chang and his two big stars, David Chiang and Ti Lung as nearly every movie they did was box office gold. Shaw Brothers.

DISCIPLES OF THE 36th CHAMBER 1984-Third and final in Liu Chia Liang’s famous trilogy about real life monk San Te. This third film deals with the obnoxious exploits of another historical hero, Fong Hsi Yu who enters the temple under the tutelage of San Te played by Gordon Liu again. Fong’s arrogant behavior unwittingly allows the evil Manchu’s to infiltrate the temple. The final fight is another brilliant piece of choreography. This, like the second film, is played more for laughs. Shaw Brothers.

DISCIPLES OF SHAOLIN 1975-Alexander Fu Sheng’s finest hour as a country bumpkin who comes into town to visit his brother who works for a dyeing mill. A rival dyeing mill backed by the Manchu’s tries to force the other out of business and Fu, a poor man who only wants a new pair of shoes, helps to rid the town of the Manchu’s against the better judgment of his brother. Fu ends up getting everything he ever wanted from his new boss but at a price. Some powerful emotional scenes and some adrenaline fueled fights highlight one of Chang’s best. One of a few redux’s Chang Cheh would helm modeled on his excellent BOXER FROM SHANTUNG. Shaw Brothers.

DR. LAMB 1994-One of a handful of category 3 horror films to come out of HK in the wake of the depraved but award winning BUNMAN: THE UNTOLD STORY. A cab driver murders his female passengers keeping their bodies around for awhile before dismembering them and burying the remains below the floor boards in his house. Simon Yam Tat Wah made a career out of playing really sick and twisted psycho’s in films like FULL CONTACT and INSANITY.

DREADNAUGHT 1981-Golden Harvest classic about a maniacal killer on the loose who’s wife is killed during a botched capture. He takes up in an Opera troupe fronted by a villainous Phillip Ko. Jackie Chan’s stage brother, Yuen Biao learns to be a man when he witnesses the killer kill again and is pursued throughout the picture finally having no choice but to fight at the end using skills he had all along secretly learnt while washing and scrubbing clothes. A GH classic who, by this time, were slowly taking over as the dominant force in HK cinema.

DRAGONS FOREVER 1987-The best triple act of Jackie, Sammo and Biao. Comedic genius combined with excellent new wave action. One of the best HK actioners ever.

DRAGON’S CLAWS 1979-Standard kung fu movie starring the youngest of the Liu (or Lau) brothers and another great villainous performance by the great Hwang Jang Lee. Another role tailored for Jackie Chan.

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« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2007, 02:56:15 PM »

DRAGON INN 1993-Remake of the classic King Hu original with Donnie Yen as the evil Eunuch.

DRAGON FROM RUSSIA, THE 1993-HK version of the Japanese anime series CRYING FREEMAN.

DIRTY TIGER, CRAZY FROG 1978-One of a handful of kung fu comedy productions between Sammo Hung and Shaw’s Liu Chia Yung also starring the venerable Lee Hai Sheng as the villain.

DRUNKEN MASTER 1979-Classic Jackie Chan movie about real life Wong Fei Hung during his younger years popularized in the 76 Shaw film CHALLENGE OF THE MASTERS. Korean boot master Hwang Jang Lee returns from his previous Chan film SNAKE IN THE EAGLE’S SHADOW. After that film, Chan refused to never work with Hwang again after he kicked Chan’s front teeth out! Hwang’s popularity insured his return. During this film, the two still could not get along resulting in Hwang knocking Chan out with a kick to the head and a trip to the hospital. Chan later proclaimed he’d make sure Hwang never worked in HK again. He did however, even directing at least one movie (that’s quite good too) playing the hero.

DEVIL, THE 1980-Gruesome Asian horror about a vengeful female ghost seeking the men who raped and murdered her. Features lots of scenes of people scarfing down live centipedes, worms and other unpleasant creatures and then barfing them up on cue.

DEADLY DUO, THE 1971-Iron Triangle favorite about a group of patriots attempting to break their leader out of the enemies booby trapped fortress. They seek the help of a lone martial artist (David Chiang) possessing the skill to cross a treacherous bridge but then they must get inside amidst many obstacles. Based on real historical events the film features many gory battles and death scenes. Shaw Brothers.

DANCE OF THE DRUNK MANTIS 1979-After Jackie Chan refused to never again work with Hwang Jang Lee again, director Yuen Woo Ping and producer Ng See Yuen went off and made a sequel to DRUNKEN MASTER using everybody but Chan who ended up working with, and having further problems with director Lo Wei after an already disastrous run of films. Hwang plays a white haired villain popularized by Shaw’s EXECUTIONERS FROM SHAOLIN after which everybody was producing a movie with a seemingly indestructible white haired villain.

DUEL OF THE ULTIMATE WEAPONS 1983-One of many forgettable Korean kung fu flicks Hwang Jang Lee would make after leaving HK. His devastating kicking skills, unrivaled even today, are the only reason to view this one.

DEMON STRIKE 1980-A low budget rip-off of the Shaw’s famous KILLER CONSTABLE from the year prior, itself a remake of Chang Cheh’s classic spaghetti western influenced INVINCIBLE FIST. This one almost a note for note clone, adds some magical elements. An absolute dream cast is, for the most part, wasted. Shaw Stars Jason Pai Piao, Liang Chia Jen(Beardy) and Hwang Jang Lee as another white haired villain who shoots lasers from his palm headline this disappointing film. Hwang doesn’t even show off much of his awesome kicking ability either. A missed opportunity.

DESCENDANT OF THE SUN 1982-The Shaw Brothers version of SUPERMAN done as a period piece directed by Chu Yuan. LOADS of crazy special effects as an evil sorcerer is reincarnated as the Evil Infant who threatens to take over the Martial World. At the same time, a savior is born in the form of a magical baby who is endowed with superhuman strength and grows up to combat evil complete with his own ice fortress. A funny talking parrot helps ensure this effects filled silliness is one for the kids.

DAGGERS 8 1977-Indy kung fu movie about a villainous bandit who uses throwing daggers and a couple of kung fu heroes and heroines that pursue him. Good choreography.

DRAGON LIVES AGAIN, THE 1980-Absolutely nutty movie with Bruce Liang as Bruce Lee who goes to Hell and sides with Kwai Chang Cane, the One Armed Swordsman and Popeye(!) to do battle with James Bond, Emanuelle, the Godfather, the Exorcist, the Man with No Name, Zatoichi and Dracula(!) and his army of Zombies and Mummies. Lots of naked girls trying to get into Bruce’s pants and fight scenes of Liang wearing Lee’s Kato mask not to mention an ending straight out of THE WIZARD OF OZ ensure this is one of the zaniest movies you’re likely to ever see.

DIARY OF A LADY KILLER 1971-Modern day murder thriller. Haven’t seen yet. Shaw Bros.

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« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2007, 03:09:56 PM »

DIRTY HO 1979-One of Liu Chia Liang’s best achievements. Some of the most creative fight scenes of all time. One of the 14 Prince’s in line to be Emperor uses a petty thief to help make it through a horde of hitmen and government officials hired by one of his insidious brothers who wants to get him out of the way. A highlight is a battle during a windstorm in a valley one of many beautiful sets created on the vast Shaw Brothers Studio Lot.

DEADLY BREAKING SWORD, THE 1979-One of Sun Chung’s best about an arrogant swordsman who carries coffins to the duels for his opponents. His sword breaking off inside his victims bodies, lodging in the bone. One formidable adversary manages to survive and is nursed back to health by an evil doctor fronting as a respected citizen. By the end, he has recuperated fully, the medicine changing his hair white endowing him with more power. Ti Lung, the ego minded swordsman, runs into a young, brash, down on his luck bodyguard-gambler and over the course of the film, the two end up learning much from each other. The finale sees the villain dueling again with the swordsman until the young acolyte (Fu Sheng) intervenes and helps out. The evil doctor (Ku Feng) gets his comeuppance as well. Excellent score. Shaw Bros.

DEATH VALLEY 1968-One of a handful of movies Lo Wei would make at Shaw Studios before “directing” Bruce Lee at Golden Harvest. Lo’s direction at Shaw’s is much more assured and solid than his later work at GH and his many forgettable indy features. This one stars Yue Hua and there’s numerous double crosses and ambushes aplenty in this period actioner with the usual excellent set design.

DEMON OF THE LUTE 1983-Kids Fantasy martial arts film based on a popular comic book. Lots of action and special effects. Features an animated credits sequence.

DRAGON SQUAD 1974-One of many indy productions Jimmy Wang Yu made outside of Shaw’s and GH. This one about four friends who put their differences aside to save a town from bandits. Also known as FOUR REAL FRIENDS, the movie has some very good choreography.

DYNASTY 1976-3-D kung fu movie starring famous kicker Tan Tao Liang. Lots of wild villains and crazy weaponry on display. It would be great to see this in 3-D as something is constantly being thrown at the screen.

DEVIL’S MIRROR, THE 1972-Sun Chung’s first movie has none of his flourishes that would surface in his later films, but what a tight actioner this is about an evil clan who use sorcery in their search for two magical mirrors giving them infinite powers. Several kung fu clans unite to bring them down. A most memorable nymphomaniacal villainess nearly steals the show. Shaw Brothers.
DRAGON SWAMP 1968-Excellent sets propel this Lo Wei Shaw film starring the first Queen of Martial Arts cinema Cheng Pei Pei who dominates the film in a dual role. Sometimes silly but always entertaining and loaded with secret passageways, elaborate death traps, superpowers, disguises and even giant lizards! The plot deals with a powerful sword stolen by Cheng’s husband who only married her to get close to the magical blade (which is also featured in CROUCHING TIGER…also starring Cheng). The sword is retrieved and the thief is sent into exile into the treacherous Dragon Swamp. 20 years later the sword is stolen again and the stranded daughter of the wife from years earlier (who bears a striking resemblance to her mother, Cheng again) sets out with a number of students to find the sword again. This is where the secrets are revealed and the bulk of the action takes place. Nice pulpy adventure style Wu Xia Pian.

EMPEROR & HIS BROTHER, THE 1981-Ku Lung adaptation from Chu Yuan has an all star cast and a comedic flavor as opposed to the other mystery thrillers from Chu. Part of an immensely popular series of musicals from Shaw’s beginning with EMPEROR CHIEN LUNG. This is the only entry that is strictly action based. A lesser film from Chu and confusing with its multitude of characters. Chu said in an interview he preferred his 70s films as opposed to his work in the 80s as the popularity for these costumed films based on the novels of Ku Lung were losing their popularity by this point. Has some memorable moments though. Stars the stoic Ti Lung and the ever villainous Lo Lieh.


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« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2007, 03:11:31 PM »

EXECUTIONER, THE 1974-One of two films Sonny Chiba did with Teruo Ishii who did not want to direct Karate films. He attempted to direct the craziest movie he could come up with ensuring that Toei Studios would not ask him back to do anymore. The film was a big hit. The studio sent him out to direct another to his chagrin. Features some off the wall extreme violence and Chiba gets to play a similar character to his wildly popular Tokuma Tsurugi from THE STREET FIGHTER. A young Yasuaki Kurata who would go on to a successful career in Japan as well as HK, features as a hero here.

EXECUTIONER 2, THE 1974-The rushed sequel to the above film concentrates more on zany, nutty, sometimes laughably violent THREE STOOGES style antics than violence which doesn’t take over until the finale. Chiba and his group of misfits are hired to break into a high security building and steal some jewels. Director Ishii figured he couldn’t lose by shooting probably the single most madcap violent Karate feature ever. The film became an even bigger hit than its predecessor and a festival favorite. Years later, Ishii and Chiba talked about doing a third film but Ishii died before the production could be mounted.

EAGLE’S KILLER,  THE 1980-Hwang Jang Lee dominates this film with his devastating kicking skills as a supposed hero who is actually a hired killer who runs into a put upon errand boy played by John Chang (DRAGON: THE BRUCE LEE STORY). He eventually abandons the kid selling him into a sex slave ring(!) The kid escapes and is taught kung fu and then goes after Hwang after he kills his teacher.

EAGLE’S CLAW Classic indy kung fu flick has a smorgasbord of Shaw stars. A dying master names his youngest son as the new teacher enraging the eldest who then joins up with the evil, rival school. Late in the film, he sees the err of his ways although the evil teacher’s daughter has fallen in love with him creating even more of a rift. The last few surviving members band together to take on the evil teacher proficient in kung fu. Chi Kuan Chun, Wong Tao, Liang Chia Jen and Chang Yi. Director Lee Tso Nam, along with Joseph Kuo, are the two best directors of indy kung fu features.

EXECUTIONERS FROM SHAOLIN 1976-Liu Chia Liang’s blockbuster about the real life struggle between Shaolin and the Manchu’s. The film opens after the temple has been destroyed and a handful of survivors escape led by Hung Hsi Kuan. They then hide out as traveling Opera troupes using the Red Boats, large sea vessels, as cover. The White Browed Priest Pai Mei, relentlessly pursues them. Later, Hung marries and has a child all the while training for a final battle with Pai Mei. Contains a shock moment ¾ in that was a surprise to the HK audience of the time. Lo Lieh got renewed popularity as the villain here.
EASTERN CONDORS 1986-GH big budget box office disaster directed by Sammo Hung was unjustly neglected in HK. It’s a violent re-telling of the DIRTY DOZEN with many intense and violent kung fu fights and explosions involving a group of criminals recruited to destroy an illegal weapons and missile installation in Vietnam. Some elements were borrowed from the Shaw Brothers 1982 film MERCENARIES FROM HONG KONG. Highly recommended GH production.

ENCOUNTERS OF THE SPOOKY KIND 1981-GH Sammo Hung directed comedy horror hit that paved the way for horror films laced with comedy as opposed to serious horror that was being produced at Shaw’s. Audience tastes likened this approach which led to one of the most profitable series’ ever with the MR. VAMPIRE films and its many knock offs.

EROTIC GHOST STORY 1992-Lan Nai Kai, former New Wave director at Shaw’s shot this popular category 3 erotic fantasy comedy featuring a bevy of buxom Chinese beauties including busty Amy Yip. One of the best. Most films of this nature are only worth watching for the ladies on display, but this one has some very good effects work involving a demon using three nymphet’s as his means of reincarnating into the human world. Followed by three sequels.

EIGHT DIAGRAM POLE FIGHTER, THE 1984-Downbeat final Shaw Brothers film from Liu Chia Liang dealing with the true story about the noble Yang family, betrayed and labeled traitors, enabling the Mongols to take over China. A prophecy foretells “7 leave, 6 returns”. The writing is misinterpreted resulting in a massacre. The 6th son returns, crazed from the ambush. However, the 5th son escapes and seeks shelter at Shaolin where he learns to be a monk. His sister seeks him out and when she is captured, he must rescue her in one of the most spectacular displays of kung fu choreography ever put to film. Liang’s most violent and bloody scenes he ever shot, the somber tone is anchored by the death of heartthrob Alexander Fu Sheng mid way through filming after crashing his car headlong into a concrete wall. Two hours later he would be pronounced dead. The script was hurriedly re-written to work around his character. An excellent opening credits sequence is a highlight. Highly recommended.

ENTER THE FAT DRAGON 1978-Sammo Hung parody on Bruce Lee about a pig butcher who worships Lee dressing and acting like him. Hung’s character gets mixed up with some mob guys and uses his hilarious Bruce Lee skills to fight back.


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« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2007, 03:16:22 PM »

EYES OF THE SPIDER 2000-Kiyoshi Kurosawa thriller remade not long after as THE SERPENTS PATH also from Kurosawa. Haven’t seen this version yet.

ENCHANTRESS, THE 1984-The final Chu Yuan film adapted from Ku Lung. This one has a gothic flavor but the production values are slightly lacking as opposed to what Chu was doing in the 70s. This one about a vengeful female spirit out to kill the descendants of martial world clans who had wronged her years before. Some decent effects work and fine sets but like the Hammer films before, the Shaw Style was becoming increasingly dated by this point compared with what GH was doing at the time.

EBOLA SYNDROME, THE 1996-Seriously twisted and nasty final category 3 horror before the hand over of HK back to China. The last hurrah of the cat 3 series of grueling horror that was popular at the time. Anthony Wong, who became mega famous playing a real life psycho in the award winning BUNMAN: THE UNTOLD STORY, here plays a similar character. Words can’t do this exercise in sadistic cruelty and sometimes hilarious scenes of bad taste justice. Highly recommended for those with strong constitutions.

EVIL OF DRACULA 1971-Third in a series of Japanese horrors and only two to deal with the Dracula character. Not as good as the second film, LAKE OF DRACULA, but decent enough.

EXCITING DRAGON 1984-After the Venoms left Shaw’s, they made a series of films in Taiwan and this is one of them. This, a spin off of Yuen Woo Ping’s popular SHAOLIN DRUNKARD series features some excellent choreography and silly magical comedy amongst the bumbling wizards throughout the film.

18 FATAL STRIKES 1977-Haven’t seen yet.

FIVE VENOMS 1978-Hugely popular and successful first official entry in the famed series of films featuring the popular Venom Mob of actors. The dying master of the Poison Clan sends his last student to find an old classmate who has stashed away, the gold made by the Clan over the years. He tells the student to take the gold and donate it to charity to atone for the Clan’s sins over the years. However, the other 5 students are also after the gold. No one knows who is who nor who is good or bad. What follows is an intricately plotted mystery thriller with martial arts sequences that are not up to par with later entries. Still, it’s a fun comic book kung fu film that’s a landmark in the genre. The Venoms series is more popular in America than in their native HK. The first few films were profitable but kung fu comedies took over replacing the serious martial arts adventures that had prospered for so long. A modern day remake is currently in the making. Shaw Brothers.

FIVE SHAOLIN MASTERS 1975-The fourth in Chang Cheh’s Shaolin cycle. This one about 5 real life masters that escaped only to train on their own and take on a militant band of Manchu specialists including a Chinese traitor. Shaw had millions in Taiwan that he couldn’t touch so he had Chang go there in autonomy and use the money to make a handful of films of which this is one.

FATAL NEEDLES, FATAL FISTS 1978-Indy kung fu flick with Wong Tao and Chang Yi with a guest appearance by Lo Lieh. Some nice fights and decent sets for an indy.

FISTS, KICKS & THE EVILS, THE 1979-Indy starring real fighter Bruce Liang training for revenge for the death of his father.

FISTS & GUTS 1980-Indy from the Lau Brothers company, who shot a series of films during their tenure at Shaw’s. The choreography is no less extravagant here. Liu Chia Yung and Lee Hai Sheng play a bumbling duo tracking a renegade monk played by Lo Lieh. Some funny comedic bits.

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« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2007, 03:17:36 PM »

FIRST SHOT 1993-HK Action about a real life secret police organization formed to fight corruption within the police force. Lots of gun battles and Ti Lung is on hand to provide a dramatic performance as the man who forms the ICAC.

FEARLESS HYENA, THE 1979-Jackie Chan’s sole hit with Lo Wei. Chan managed to convince Lo to allow him the freedom to direct and shoot his way. The resulting film was a hit and led to another major falling out between the two and Jimmy Wang Yu, who by this time had ties with the Triads, came to the rescue. A white haired villain is searching for the leader of a kung fu clan, a patriot involved in rebellions against the Manchu’s. Unknown to Chan, his grandfather is that man. Chan, against his grandfathers wishes, secretly opens a kung fu school partnered with four idiot conmen and makes lots of money defeating many fighters gaining students in the process. During these scenes, Chan’s comedy shtick is in evidence, doing a Pink Panther spoof and dressing up as a woman. He unwittingly leads the villain to his grandfather then must train in “emotional kung fu” to defeat the bad guys. Although I’m not a Chan fan, this is one of his best early films benefiting from some great choreography both empty handed and with weapons.

FREEZE ME 1999-Nasty Japanese horror similar to I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE about a young girl who is raped by four men who years later get out of prison and look the girl up again. Ultimately, she is brutally raped and beaten by the men again, one of them now a rich businessman. She goes insane and turns the tables on her attackers using a freezer to hide the dismembered corpses. A downer ending.

FATAL FLYING GUILLOTINE, THE 1976-One of a handful of movies to cash in on the Shaw Brothers success with the hit 1975 film THE FLYING GUILLOTINE. Here, the main villain is a psycho who hides out in a valley and uses two Guillotines at once. He is recruited by the Manchu’s to help quell the Chinese heroes they are trying to capture. A final twist comes into play at the conclusion.

FEARLESS DRAGONS 1982-Creatively humorous kung fu comedy starring three of Shaw Brothers biggest stars-Liang Chia Jen, Phillip Ko Fei and super villain Wang Lung Wei about two undercover officials trying to nab a criminal who may or may not be a rich businessman. Some excellent choreography and some very funny anachronistic humor enliven this indy movie. Aka TWO ON THE ROAD.

FLYING GUILLOTINE, THE 1975-Major hit from Shaw’s about a secret group of assassins created to get rid of those against the Emperors rule. One of the killers, played effectively by real fighter Chen Kuan Tai, escapes the group after they begin assassinating their own members. The remaining group go after him. The film focuses more on the deadly hatbox as opposed to the kung fu action which there is very little. Probably holds the record for most decapitations in a single film. Directed by kung fu director who also frequented the horror genre Ho Meng Hua.

FLYING GUILLOTINE 2, THE 1977-Seriously depressing sequel is the BENEATH THE PLANET OF THE APES of Shaw Brothers movies. Ti Lung replaces Chen Kuan Tai this time out assisting a rag tag band of patriots trying to topple the Emperor in a series of ambushes and stealth missions but the bad guys are always one step ahead. There’s been some tampering with plot points from the original but the film moves so quickly, you don’t have time to think about them. The kung fu takes center stage and the violence and gore has been amped up as well. There may have been production problems as two directors are credited Hua Shan and crime director Cheng Kang who was one of the best action directors in HK.

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« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2007, 03:25:02 PM »

FIVE PATTERN DRAGON CLAWS 1983-Another low budget Korean KF movie with Hwang Jang Lee again as the villain delivering some of his best fight scenes. The only reason to watch.

FIVE FINGERS OF STEEL 1982-Excellent indy KF flick which stars two of the greatest screen kickers-Stallone’s martial arts instructor Kwan Young Moon and Hwang Jang Lee…as a good guy! The bad guys are really evil here as Kwan eliminates his rival kung fu school and rapes the teachers daughter. She goes insane and has a deformed baby which Kwan then murders claiming it wasn’t his. The last remaining students find Hwang (who doesn’t show up until the last half) and he trains them to combat their enemy. During the final fight, Kwan is still too much for them and Hwang joins the fight giving us a few minutes of two boot masters doing what they do best!

FULL MOON SCIMITAR 1979-Chu Yuan film from the Ku Lung novel about a cocky swordsman who is finally defeated a better fighter. He ends up in a netherworld populated by supernatural spirits where he falls in love with an elders daughter. He longs to return to the human world and his wife reluctantly follows him where he finally defeats the one who beat him supplanting the man as the supreme swordsman. His attitude changes, shaming his wife making way for the usual double crosses and subterfuge inherent in the Ku Lung adaptations masterfully directed by Chu Yuan. The always gorgeous sets are here and this entry is more easy to follow than some of the other films in the 30+ Romantic Swordsman films Chu would make.

FURIOUS SLAUGHTER 1972-Jimmy Wang Yu indy where he battles against some gangsters. Pretty good movie and sets. Wang Yu gets some funny dubbed dialog amidst the many fight scenes. A sequel, MA SU CHEN followed soon after.

FAKE GHOST CATCHERS, THE 1982-Shaw Comedy horror from Liu Chia Yung who had a hit the previous year with THE TREASURE HUNTERS with that films cast returning here amidst some funny comedy and some fine fight choreography. The comedy and the spooky aspects take center stage here about some fake ghostbusters who con people out of their money in bogus exorcisms. Fu Sheng and his real life brother Chang Chan Peng star along with Liu Chia Liang student Hsiao Hou. Wang Lung Wei provides a one eyed villain. Some good special effects which may or may not have been from Tom Savini!

FAST FINGERS 1983-Shaw Brothers imitation of Jackie Chan’s stunt filled comedy capers utilizes several bits that Chan himself would rip off for later movies. Three conmen are hired by a honorable constable (Lo Mang) to bring down a gangster played by Wang Lung Wei. The ending is a riot.

FINGER OF DOOM 1972-Moody martial arts horror directed by frequent Chang Cheh co-director and cinematographer Pao Hsu Li. About a vengeful female spirit from beyond the grave and the swordsmen who fight against her to send her back to Hell. Shaw Brothers.

FIGHTER IN THE WIND 2005-Korean box office hit about the life of real life martial artist Matsutatsu Oyama who was the instructor to Sonny Chiba among many others. Famous for chopping bull horns from charging bulls with his bare hands. He also was known for killing bulls with his “God Hand”. Some very dramatic and emotionally charged scenes.

FANTASTIC MAGIC BABY, THE 1975-Odd Chang Cheh movie filmed as an elaborate Opera. A most unusual experiment that reportedly failed to find its audience. An interesting film to see a filmic version of the Peking Opera and where director got some of his inspiration. Shaw Brothers.

FLYING DAGGER, THE 1968-Chang Cheh directed this interesting film about a female avenger and a clan of villains headed by a knife throwing bad guy. Some fine performances especially Cheng Pei Pei and Yue Hua. The opening few minutes are shot quite well using some inventive cinematographic techniques. Unusual in that nearly all of Chang’s movies centered around the male characters. Shaw Bros.

14 AMAZONS, THE 1972-The biggest Shaw Brothers production they ever mounted about the Yang family (The Yang’s were later filmed in THE 8 DIAGRAM POLE FIGHTER) this movie takes place after all the male Yang’s have been killed in battle leaving all the females who then take up the fight and mount a massive assault against the Mongols. Lo Lieh plays the villainous Mongol leader and famous Shaw starlet Ivy Ling Po is one of the female warriors. Yue Hua is the central male hero. The Human Bridge scene and the destruction of the dam during the finale is breathtaking among other highlights. The HK disc is supposedly missing footage. The recent French 2 disc set contains more character scenes. Spectacular production that’s highly recommended. Directed by ace director Cheng Kang.

FIVE TOUGH GUYS 1974-Pao Hsu Li directs this action tale about five men who go undercover in a gang to get revenge for a friends death. Average action flick. Called KUNG FU HELLCATS in US theaters.

FLAG OF IRON, THE 1980-Venom movie about a gang war where the good leader is killed under mysterious circumstances. A deadly plot is uncovered leading to some dynamite fight scenes. The finale involving the two heroes and the one remaining villain as they fight with spear tipped flags is a marvelous piece of choreography. The most interesting character is the Spearman (Lung Tien Sheng) who has a short spear that also shoots projectiles aimed like a gun. You never quite know just where he stands until late in the movie and his presence provides a major plot point about half way through. At nearly 2 hours long, the film could use a little more trimming. Essentially a reworking of Chang’s earlier gangster classic THE DUEL. Stars Kuo Chui, Chiang Sheng, Lu Feng, Wang Li. Shaw Brothers.

FRIENDS 1974-Chang Cheh directs this drama about friends and their tumultuous relationships. Not an action film but does have a bit at the end.

FIGHT! ZATOICHI, FIGHT! 1964-Thinking he is inside a palanquin, three attackers kill a young mother mistaken for Ichi. She leaves a child behind whom Ichi feels responsible for. With killers around every corner, Ichi befriends a female pickpocket on the way to return the child to his father. At the end, Ichi learns that the father never wanted the mother nor the child. One of the best which is difficult to say considering there so many excellent ZATOICHI films. Fans will not be disappointed.

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« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2007, 12:18:38 AM »

BELLS OF DEATH, THE 1968-Brilliant spaghetti western laced swordsman movie about a group of bandits who brutally massacre a man’s family. He takes the Bells from his dead child’s arm and hunts the killers down one by one, the sound of ringing bells heralding his arrival. Some extravagant sets and marvelous duels, including one during a rain storm and another in a thick bamboo forest.



Want to see this!


Are all these the pristine dvds from Hong Kong? Or are most of these crappy transfer versions?

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« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2007, 12:22:53 AM »


CRIPPLED AVENGERS 1978-HUGE cult following in this 5 VENOM series entry sees a hero lose his mind after his enemies brutally kill his wife and cripple his son. He fashions his son with Iron Arms and slips into madness crippling anybody that even looks at him wrong. One guy is blinded, another is made a deaf-mute for cursing him, another has his legs chopped off and another has an iron tourniquet applied to his skull turning him into an idiot. The cripples find a teacher who trains them to overcome their handicaps. They then return to avenge themselves on the villain who has taken over the entire town. A number of martial arts experts are attending his birthday party and the heroes must go through them before getting their mitts on the villain and his equally nasty son. A favorite and a perfect starting point for newbies. Started a series of cripple movies in HK. Highly recommended.






Wicked action flick! Not a boring moment in the whole film!

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