Martial Arts

Mu Chu & Hai-Feng Wei – Diao shou guai zhao AKA Snake Fist Fighter AKA Master with Cracked Fingers (1973)

Young Jackie was intrigued by Kung Fu since an early age, but his father strictly forbade its practice. One day, he meets an old beggar who offers to teach Jackie how to fight. Jackie grows up to be quite good, though he keeps his knowledge a secret until he is forced to fight by an extortion ring that’s putting the squeeze on his uncle’s restaurant. Read More »

King Hu – Ying chun ge zhi Fengbo AKA The Fate of Lee Khan (1973)

Synopsis:
During the Yuan Dynasty, a band of Han rebels in disguise converge at an inn out in a desolate Western province to await the arrival of Mongol warlord Lee Khan in order to intercept the delivery of a military war map. Read More »

Yoshiaki Kawajiri – Jûbei ninpûchô AKA Ninja Scroll (1993)

Quote:
A vagabond swordsman is aided by a beautiful ninja girl and a crafty spy in confronting a demonic clan of killers – with a ghost from his past as their leader – who are bent on overthrowing the Tokugawa Shogunate. Read More »

King Hu – Da zui xia AKA Come Drink with Me (1966)

Synopsis:
A ruthless band of thugs kidnaps a young official to exchange for their leader who has been captured. Golden Swallow is sent to take on the thugs and free the prisoner (who is also her brother). Though she is able to handle the overwhelming odds, she is hit by a poison dart and gets help from a beggar who is really a kung-fu master in disguise. With his help, she forms a plan to get her brother back. Read More »

Ekachai Uekrongtham – Beautiful Boxer (2003)

Synopsis:
Based on the real life story of Parinya Charoenphol, a Muaythai boxer who underwent a sex change operation to become a woman. The movie chronicles her life from a young boy who likes to wear lipstick and wear flowers to her sensational career as kickboxer whose specialty is ancient Muaythai boxing moves which she can execute expertly with grace and finally her confrontation with her own sexuality which led to her sex change op. Read More »

Shan Hua – Feng shen jie AKA Usurpers of Emperor’s Power (1983)

Usurpers Of Emperor’s Power has all the elements of a good martial arts film: a power struggle amongst royalty, imperial spies, jianghu wars – and plenty of action. Liu Yung (who would go on to star in all of Bruce Lee’s movies) plays Li Lang, a court official out to avenge his former emperor. The target is easy to hate: the power-hungry Kuang-yi (Chao Kuo) is a plundering rapist and a cold-blooded murderer. But can one man take on the imperial army? Read More »

Yuen Chor – Jue dai shuang jiao AKA The Proud Twins (1979)

When his father is killed in the Valley of the Villains, the young boy is taken away by his father’s best friend Yen Nan Tien. Yen seeks to find out why his friend was killed. The boy also has a twin brother, who has a variety of foster parents after the death of this father – some of them are villains, some of them are benign. The last set of foster parents were strange, cynical and cunning villains. The boy, by now an accomplished martial artist, kills them and sets out in search of the answer to the riddle of his father’s death. In the course of his searches, he encounters his twin. At first they seem likely to fight one another, but they eventually join forces.
~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide. Read More »