Ask any martial arts movie aficionado for his or her list of all-time action greats, and there's a good chance that Killer Clans ranks somewhere near the top. Based on a popular swordplay novel, Killer Clans (whose Chinese title literally translates into the poetic "Meteor, Butterfly, Sword") has enough conspiracies, stratagems, and sword fights to make even non-action fans happy. They are masterfully staged by Yuen Cheung-yan, brother of Matrix martial arts choreographer Yuen Woo-ping. The cast includes some of Shaw Brothers' leading swordsmen and swordswomen, and they bring to life the novel's epic battles between underground clans, where the line between good and evil is not always so clear-cut or obvious.
Connecting all the antics of bosses, monks, beggars, and thieves is the slippery and sinuous efforts of three pickpockets so adept at their chosen skill that they can even trick three beauties of their underwear without missing a step.
Is it a historical, costumed kung-fu film or a gender-bending romantic comedy? You decide, but kung-fu film star, writer, and director Lu Chun-ku probably meant it as both. In either case, it’s a delightful and exciting surprise from the man who made Holy Flame Of The Martial World and Bastard Swordsman, starring a cast of both kung-fu stalwarts and incredible beauties -- all obviously having the time of their lives in this unique change of pace.
Award-winning drama featuring a passionate performance by Lisa Lu, enhanced by sumptuous costumes and sets, produces a powerful, fascinating story. In five thousand years of Chinese history, there was never a more fascinating woman than the dragon lady of the Ching Dynasty, also the Empress Dowager, who was the power behind the throne for the last half of the 19th century. The vast tapestry of palace intrigues is vividly brought to the screen.
Like many of the swordsman films of the sixties, The Magnificent Swordsman centers on the hero vowing vengeance against evil bandits that killed his family when he was a child. Influenced by Akira Kurosawa's The Seven Samurai, the hero (played by Huang Tsung-shun who starred in Bruce Lee's Fist Of Fury), recruits several friends to help peasants rid their village of marauding bandits, the leader of course being the man that killed his family.
Shu Pei-pei, Huang Tsung-hsing, Tien Feng, Ching Miao
To the tune of the Osmonds hit song, this is a story of adolescent playfulness & innocence lost. Two best friends grow up together and teasingly meet two delightfully impish boys leading to the four to flirtatiously intermingle. However, the innocence of partner swapping eventually leads to a roller-coaster bouts of misunderstood emotions.
This witty romantic comedy features the wacky attempts of three bachelors trying to get girls without buying rings. The Hong Kong Playgirls have other results in mind. The fast-paced complications and gambits are made bittersweet by the performance of renowned kung-fu hero, Alexander Fu Sheng, who proved to be an utterly charming comedic star. Sadly he was soon killed in a tragic car accident, essentially making him the 'James Dean of Hong Kong'.
Fu Sheng, Shih Hsien, Chan Pak-cheung, Cherrie chung
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon could be called "Swordswomen Two." Three decades earlier, Shen Yi, Essie Lin Chia, and Pan Ying-tzu took on Shaw's first international superstar, Lo Lieh for the Han Family Sword - making this a four-star treat for action fans.
Shen Yi, Essie Lin, Pan Ying-tzu, Chang I, Lo Lieh
Three of Shaw Brothers' finest martial arts directors, who, between them, had made more than a hundred classics, united for this unique anthology film. Yueh Feng writes and directs a clever love-and-kung-fu triangle, Cheng Kang both writes and directs kung-fu courtesans battling brigands, and the "godfather of the kung-fu film," Chang Cheh, creates a cliff-hanging, swashbuckling mini-movie with maxi-action. It's three times the substance, style, skill, and stars in what truly stands as a motion picture event.
Shih Szu, Yueh Hua, Lily Ho, Lo Lieh, David Chiang, Ti Lung
The “Venoms” are back in action again! After creating an international sensation in The Five Venoms, Taiwanese Opera artists Kuo Chue, Chiang Sheng and Lu Feng reteamed with Chinese muscleman Lo Meng and superkicker Sun Chien for this politically charged thriller. Set in the early Republican years, some skilled refugees run afoul of a powerful traitor, and from then on it’s one amazing battle after another.
Renowned director Yueh Fung (Lay General Hua Mu-lan, Silent Love) directs this sensitively toned melodrama focused on the rarely touched upon subject of single motherhood. In a time when single parenthood was a less acceptable in Hong Kong, attractive Wen-lan (Fang) finds herself the target of the desires of 3 men. But as a single mother, if Wen Lan wants to be loved, she has to give up her beloved son. In an era when female chastity and purity are valued over all else, how can a single parent woman to find emotional contentment and fulfillment? Watch out for a rare dramatic turn for action superstar Jimmy Wang Yu (One Armed Swordsman).