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The Kung-Fu and Martial Arts Thread
#36
Spike Marshall, It was released in Hong Kong, and I got it from yesasia.com.
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#37
I'll have to look it up, thanks for the recommendation Fleed.

Did any of you guys catch Seven Swords. I know the critical reception for the film was bad, but I kind of loved the hell out of it. I was really hoping that it might get a sequel or we might at least see the extended version that Tsui Hark occasionally mentions.
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#38
Wu Jing is completely new to me, SPL was the only thing I've seen him in, Any recommedations? Btw that fight with Hung is very good at the end, I think the hate comes from the fact that it's right after the alleyway fight and the fact that it doesn't live up to that fight
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#39
Quote:

Originally Posted by duke fleed
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while Jet Li returned in #6 with Sammo Hung directing, the worst film in the series. It was eeriely similar to the episode of Star Trek, where Kirk thought he was...Kiroc a Native American. Just like Captain Kirk, Wong Fu Hong gets a head injury where he thinks he is a Native American. It is a horrible way to end such a good series.

The Texas-filmed (Tsui Hark went to film school in Austin) ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA AND AMERICA is a bad movie but it's a fun, very well photographed, frequently bizarre bad movie that's always struck me as charming in its goofiness. It's an ill-fitting entry into the franchise, but if you think of of it as a marginally more serious CLAWS OF STEEL/LAST HERO IN CHINA sequel instead, most of its flaws magically become virtues - and with Sammo directing, of course the action scenes are very good. It's almost a textbook definition of a guilty pleasure. Just make sure you watch the sync-sound Mandarin & English version if possible.

Some similarities to the later SHANGHAI NOON betray this film's origins as a Jackie Chan/Tsui Hark Wong Fei-Hung movie which got reworked when Li and Tsui patched up their differences to make BLACK MASK. Jackie wasn't particularly happy about getting screwed out of his western, which is why the first thing he did with his newfound post-RUSH HOUR Hollywood clout was to produce SHANGHAI NOON.

Making of.
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#40
Spike Marshall, You are welcome. I did see...Seven Swords and it was not one of Tsiu Hark's better films. I did like Time And Tide though, that was a cool martial arts film.
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#41
Quote:

Originally Posted by S-Mart
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Wu Jing is completely new to me, SPL was the only thing I've seen him in, Any recommedations? Btw that fight with Hung is very good at the end, I think the hate comes from the fact that it's right after the alleyway fight and the fact that it doesn't live up to that fight

I like Drunken Monkey which is a very traditional sort of movie made in the early 00s by Lar Lau-Keung. I also think he's very good in Benny Chan's Invisible Target.
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#42
Gracias Senor
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#43
I wasn't too crazy about SPL. I thought Wu jing was quite menacing, and the alley fight was awesome, but like Spike said the final fight between Sammo and Donnie fell kinda flat for me.

Now Flashpoint...WOW. That one blew me away. The final fight scene in that was INTENSE. Excellent choreography there.

Finally, Ip Man...beautiful, brilliant, brutal. What a movie! A true old school movie. Everything about it was entertaining. I really loved every minute of it.

Yen/Yip really have had quite the renaissance when it comes to HK martial arts. I (alone with Spike) have been saying those two have been single handedly keeping the HK martial arts film scene afloat. Im not interested in seeing pop stars do action movies. yen/yip are giving the Thai a run for their money.

EDIT: forgot to add my 2 cents about Legendary Assassin. Pretty good stuff. I think Wu Jing has a good eye for action. A small scale movie, but it kinda suffered a little bit from "Jet Li" syndrome where a bunch of guys just rush at Jing and he feels no pain and just kicks everyone's ass far too easily.

And, I know we have touched on it, but let me just re-iterate that what the Thai are doing right now is simply amazing. I thought Pana Rittikari and Prachya Pinkaew may have gotten lucky with Tony Jaa and Ong Bak, but they kept upping the ante. Now Tom Yum goong is amazing, but Ong Bak 2 was even better. And inbetween they did Born to fight and have a comparable star in Dan Chupong (also in the serviceable Dynamite Warrior)...and lets not forget about Chocolate...JEEJA kicks some serious ASS. Im really looking forward to her next movie "Rising Phoenix". And then Pinkaew is working on that kids action film, whose name is escaping me right now, but the trailer looked fantastic.

They are really doing an excellent job of developing talent around Tony Jaa. I can't wait for the inevitable team-up movie of all 3 of these guys.
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#44
I actually think that out of all the Thai martial art films released thus far Chocolate is the one I'm most impressed by. Largely because it feels like a real movie and has some really interesting back and forth fights. Tony Jaa is a force of nature and stuff like the restaurant fight and that bit where he basically breaks 50 goons in half in Tom Yum Goong are amazing but the fights never felt as dynamic to me as the old Kung Fu films which would often have the hero getting the shit kicked out of them almost as much as the villain (and sometimes even more than in Jackie Chan's case). Whilst Chocolate has this happening too, there's a lot more danger to the film because she's not one hit KOing people.
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#45
Quote:

Originally Posted by Spike Marshall
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I'll have to look it up, thanks for the recommendation Fleed.

Did any of you guys catch Seven Swords. I know the critical reception for the film was bad, but I kind of loved the hell out of it. I was really hoping that it might get a sequel or we might at least see the extended version that Tsui Hark occasionally mentions.

SEVEN SWORDS didn't make much of an impression, which makes it a huge step up from LEGEND OF ZU or BLACK MASK 2. I've been meaning to revisit it as people who like it seem to like it a whole lot.

Sadly, in an article concerning his surprisingly enjoyable, somewhat Frank Tashlin-esque ALL ABOUT WOMEN, Tsui Hark addresses the issue of the extended SEVEN SWORDS and it doesn't sound promising. Good news: from the looks of it, he learned his lesson and will, starting with ALL ABOUT WOMEN, be completing the extended version and then editing that down.
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#46
Thanks for the info Reggie. Such a shame, of all the batshit insane Wuxia pictures coming out at that time Seven Swords was my favourite although I do still love moments in The Promise even if I recognise the overall product as being a bit terrible. It seems that the Koreans have taken the mantle of awesome Wuxia pictures what with Musa, Shadowless Sword and Bichunmoo being so awesome and all.
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#47
Seven Swords was gorgeous and looked suitably epic in a "lots of money thrown at the screen" way, but I came away with the notion that there's more to the story either than I managed to absorb or that Tsui Hark managed to fit on screen/keep in the final cut. An understandeable difficulty when translating epic literature to cinema, of course, but a lot of the secondary character's character arcs just sort of got lost in the muddle. Agreed with Fleed that Time & Tide is far superior - now there's an underrated movie.
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#48
Is Time and Tide the film with the awesome fight in the apartment block, with some guy rappeling around the thing and taking out a team of bad guys?
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#49
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Originally Posted by DanielRoffle
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Seven Swords was gorgeous and looked suitably epic in a "lots of money thrown at the screen" way, but I came away with the notion that there's more to the story either than I managed to absorb or that Tsui Hark managed to fit on screen/keep in the final cut. An understandeable difficulty when translating epic literature to cinema, of course, but a lot of the secondary character's character arcs just sort of got lost in the muddle. Agreed with Fleed that Time & Tide is far superior - now there's an underrated movie.

The Tsui Hark commentary track on TIME AND TIDE is really interesting - according to it, the film's fractured style is derived in part from it being, like SEVEN SWORDS and ALL ABOUT WOMEN, yet another super-long Tsui Hark epic edited down to regular feature length. And the narrator at the beginning is Tsui himself. I'd definitely agree TIME AND TIDE is underrated. It's proven to be far more influential than it was successful.

That's the one, Spike.
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#50
All this way and no mention of Heroes of the East? If you are looking for straight kung-fu in a film, look no further. Every match is top notch and the film is filled with people that are great.
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#51
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Originally Posted by Electrichead
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All this way and no mention of Heroes of the East? If you are looking for straight kung-fu in a film, look no further. Every match is top notch and the film is filled with people that are great.

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Originally Posted by reggie-wanker
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Action directors: Sammo Hung, Lau Kar-Leung, Ching Siu-Tung, Yuen Woo-Ping, Cory Yuen

Kung fu films: THE PRODIGAL SON, THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN, HEROES OF THE EAST, DRUNKEN MASTER II, ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA II.

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Originally Posted by Sammy Jankis
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I've been working some Shaw Brothers into my netflix queue. I saw The Magic Blade recently, which I didn't like much. But before that I saw Heroes of the East which was pretty fantastic. It's the story of a man and his wife comparing their various styles of Kung Fu to determine the best style. Lots of fight variety; fairly standard plot. Fun movie.

Don't worry, we wouldn't dare to overlook HEROES OF THE EAST.
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#52
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Originally Posted by Spike Marshall
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Gonna have to check out Hung's The Victim. If it's being mentioned alongside Warriors Two it must be good.

Honestly, I'd rate it higher than Warriors Two, the last fight between Leung Ka Yan and Chang Yi is just so utterly amazing, Chang Yi is an evil motherfucker, he wears an eyepatch, that's how evil he is.

Be warned though, WB owns the US rights to the film (like everything else), so it's kinda hard to get ahold of, a decent copy at least.

As far as LKL goes, Mad Monkey Kung-Fu is my perrenial favorite, just amazing work from the master and his student Hsiao Ho and a wicked end fight with Lo Lieh. I'd also recommend My Young Auntie, another fantastic boss fight between Lau and Wang Lung-Wei plus Hsaio Ho and amazing Ms. Kara Hui.
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#53
Yes, THE VICTIM is really that good.

I've got no idea how Warner Bros. wound up with it - Golden Harvest probably bought the rights to it between selling their catalog to Fortune Star in 1993 and selling their catalog to Warner Bros in 1999. The list of WB-owned Golden Harvest titles has some films on it that wouldn't seem like they should be there - independently produced 1980s titles that would have gone to Fortune Star if Golden Harvest had owned them at that time.
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#54
question for you guys. I know not all of you are state side, but what website/store do you guys use to get your Martial Arts DVDs?
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#55
I used to get alot of mine from DDDHouse.
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#56
Quote:

Originally Posted by Fazer
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question for you guys. I know not all of you are state side, but what website/store do you guys use to get your Martial Arts DVDs?

yesasia.com and dddhouse.com. Occasionally, amazon.com is better for "out of print" stuff and the occasional American release of a Hong Kong film that turns out being worth a damn.
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#57
The information and discussion in this thread has been fantastic so far. Thank you all for pointing out films that I MUST seek out as well as good websites to get them from.

Carry on
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#58
Great recommendations so far. Didn't know Reggie was a connoisseur. Can't really top 36th Chamber and Heroes of the East.

Was 5 Deadly Venoms named yet? (Judas?)

And it's more Wuxia, but Tsui Hark's at the top of his game with his remake of One Armed Swordsman, The Blade. It's dark as hell, but the final fight is amazing.
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#59
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Originally Posted by Martin Savage
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Was 5 Deadly Venoms named yet? (Judas?)

Yep, I mentioned it on the first page. I recently rewatched both it and '36th Chamber of Shaolin' and you guys were right: 36CoS is the superior film. 5DV is a hell of a lot of fun, though.
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#60
Quote:

Originally Posted by Martin Savage
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Tsui Hark's at the top of his game with his remake of One Armed Swordsman, The Blade. It's dark as hell, but the final fight is amazing.

If THE BLADE is not one of the ten best films ever made in Hong Kong, then I'm not really sure what films would qualify. With Milkyway Image's TOO MANY WAYS TO BE NO. 1, it's the most bewildering and inexcusable of the Golden Harvest films Warner Bros. has buried. The fact that they've allowed it to be rampantly bootlegged for the better part of a decade without lifting a finger to stop it, let alone countering with a legit release, ought to cost some people their jobs and/or earn them a night vision-enabled ass beating in a dark alley. I can get all manner of stuff nobody wants from the Warner Archive... but not this. A future Personal Criterion submission.
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#61
Quote:

Originally Posted by Judas Booth
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Yep, I mentioned it on the first page. I recently rewatched both it and '36th Chamber of Shaolin' and you guys were right: 36CoS is the superior film. 5DV is a hell of a lot of fun, though.

I rewatched both as part of the Fantasia festival , and yeah, 36th Chamber is superior, and more important, but 5 Deadly Venoms is mad. Heroes of the East was probably the most fun film I had the chance to see in a theater ever.

Sadly, this year will have no classic KF movies... but we'll have Ip Man. Shit, last year we had Gordon Liu presenting DISCIPLES OF THE 36TH CHAMBER...
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#62
I'd also like to recommend Chang Cheh's Vengeance, I'm not a huge fan of Cheh but this one is pretty damn great. Plenty of blood is shed, the finale was such an obvious influence on The Killer and David Chiang is pretty convincing as a psychotic young man on a quest for revenge.
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#63
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Originally Posted by Dragon Ma
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I'd also like to recommend Chang Cheh's Vengeance, I'm not a huge fan of Cheh but this one is pretty damn great. Plenty of blood is shed, the finale was such an obvious influence on The Killer and David Chiang is pretty convincing as a psychotic young man on a quest for revenge.

VENGEANCE got namechecked in the excellent 2002 film JUST ONE LOOK by Eric Kot's martial-arts-movie-hating martial arts instructor, so I have to assume it's great.

This thread would be incomplete without the TRUE LEGEND teaser; Yuen Woo-Ping directs for the first time since 1996's awful IRON MONKEY II, and Vincent Zhao of THE BLADE returns from an extended exile to Mainland TV to play a young Beggar So, the role made famous by Yuen Woo-Ping's father Simon Yuen in Yuen and Jackie Chan's breakthrough hit DRUNKEN MASTER and somewhat more recently portrayed by Stephen Chow in KING OF BEGGARS. Also starring Michelle Yeoh, Andy On, and David Carradine. IMDB says that Focus Features (i.e. Universal Pictures) is co-producing with Edko Films and China Film Group, but take that with a huge grain of salt - I've heard nothing other than that IMDB entry about Universal being involved with the film.
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#64
Hey guys! Holy fucking shit!

http://chud.com/articles/articles/20...DAY/Page1.html
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#65
Man, Jackie's career is in worse shape than both DeNiro's and Pacino's combined.
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#66
Ive given up on Jackie. He has been phoning it in since Rush Hour 2. I know he has been saying for years that he would like to eventually start taking his career in a different direction when his body started to give out, but the crap he has been putting out warrants retirement.

Just to sort of organize our thoughts here.

Ill start with three questions.

Best Sammo hung (non jackie) movie: I'd go with Magnificent Butcher

Best Jackie movie: Drunken Master II

Best Donnie Yen: Tiger Cage 2
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#67
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dragon Ma
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Man, Jackie's career is in worse shape than both DeNiro's and Pacino's combined.

Well, I'd basically agree except that post RUSH HOUR 2, there's SHANGHAI KNIGHTS and AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS, his two best American films. Other than that though...

Now, to be fair I haven't seen SHINJUKU INCIDENT yet, which is reported to be a change of pace, and a film with an actual director in Derek Yee instead of your typical weak sauce Benny Chan type of director. As a producer I'd say Jackie was doing fine - he's not squandering that Hollywood money, he's flipping it into worthy projects like HOUSE OF FURY and grooming new directors and new action stars.

My favorite Sammo Hung movie remains PRODIGAL SON. Donnie Yen... I'll cheat with some ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA II.
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#68
I'm hoping Shinjuku allows Jackie to stretch his dramatic muscles, it looks pretty good.

Best Sammo movie: The Victim. Hands down.
Best Jackie movie: Project A
Best Donnie Yen: Flashpoint
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#69
Shinjuku looks very similar to One Night In Mongkok, which is a good thing, but I'm not sure what kind of form Derek Yee is on these days. I missed Protege, but its reception was fairly lukewarm.

And...
Best Sammo Hung movie: Eastern Condors
Best Jackie Chan movie: Police Story
Best Donnie Yen movie: Mismatched Couples (seriously!)
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#70
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Originally Posted by Mark T
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Best Donnie Yen movie: Mismatched Couples (seriously!)

Obligatory MISMATCHED COUPLES clip.
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