Of all the many kinds of films Ho Meng-hua directed for the Shaw Brothers, quite possibly his most internationally popular was THE FLYING GUILLOTINE. While he did not direct its like-titled sequel, he did helm this great flying guillotine follow-up, which critics considered among his best. It was also one of his last for the studio before continuing his filmmaking career in Taiwan. It stars the gorgeous Chen Ping (THE MINISKIRT GANG, LADY EXTERMINATOR) as the sole survivor of a despotic emperor's latest foray into decapitation. Fearlessly she takes on the entire flying guillotine gang, despite the fact that she's pregnant! Lo Lieh, Shaw Brothers' first international superstar, is brilliant as the vindictive gang boss, while revered action choreographer Tang Chia mounts stupendous battles between the soaring beheaders and an astonishing wushu woman warrior with child.
This is no street gang or gang of mobsters. It's a Yuan Dynasty army, out to destroy the Hsien Lung "gang" of anti-Yuan revolutionaries. Their leader is the redoubtable Chen Kuan-tai, the real-life South-East Asian Chinese Martial Arts Tournament champion and master of "Monkey-King Split and Deflecting Arm" kung-fu, who must face paternal murder, brother against brother plots, and shocking discoveries that could change the course of history.
After making such successful thrillers as THE CRIMINALS 2 - HOMICIDES, such well-received action films as BIG BROTHER CHENG, and such popular comedies as MR. FUNNY - BONE, director Kuei Chih-hung put his first "hex" on the audience. This eerie, frightening, supernatural mystery thriller was so effective, it led to HEX VERSUS WITCHCRAFT and HEX AFTER HEX. But this was the original, starring the lovely Tanny Tien Ni in a challenging role of a wronged, bed-ridden wife who is at the mercy of her evil husband... and so much more. What starts as an Asian variation of the classic Fench suspense film DIABOLIQUE becomes an exercise in fervid and frightening Hong Kong horror as one ghost after another appears to wreak havoc, insanity, and death.
"Without a doubt," it was written in the seminal Study Of The Swordplay Film, "Hsu Cheng-hung is one of the key figures in the Mandarin new style." And this is both one of his key films and one of his last for Shaw Brothers. The lovely Ching Li and handsome Chang I star as star-and-sword-crossed comrades who take on the vicious Black Tigers gang in a quest for hidden wealth. There’s action galore, until the final, fiery fight in a temple of treasure.
Ching Li, Chang I, Shu Pei-pei, Lin Ching, Tien Feng
Superstar Linda Lin Dai in one of her most acclaimed roles. The story is about a forbidden love between a country maiden and the emperor. Emperor Cheng-te met Li Feng on a visit to South China. It was love at first sight for the lovely girl and the handsome emperor. Cheng-te left with a promise that Li Feng would be his empress. One year later, when the emperor sent for Li, her weak health cannot stand the arduous journey, she arrived just to die in the arms of her man.
Lin Dai, Chao Lei, Chin Chuan, Yang Chi-ching, Wong Yuen-loong
Huang Fei-hung is the greatest character in martial arts movie history, with more than a hundred films featuring the Confucian healer and kung-fu master. Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Gordon Liu, and many others have played him in many a gloriously filmed epic. But versatile director Ho Meng-hua and the Shaw Studio wondered what it would be like to cast one of their finest actors in the challenging role, then film it hyper-realistically. The result is this unique experimental take on the character and his stories, as the multiple award-winning Ku Feng plays an all-too-human Huang Fei-hung in a battle against a corrupt gangster's plan to frame him for robbery and murder. Despite the unusual approach, there's plenty of action as Huang and his students, including the beauteous Chen Ping, fight for honor, harmony, and health.
This sequel to The Empress Dowager surpasses its predecessor in some ways. The attention to historic detail in the sets and costumes is everything one expects from director Li Han-Hsiang, the master of the costume drama. Variety hailed the production as "lavish, the script tightly packed"; Variety also concluded that the "filmmaker's efforts to try to make things perfect, to put his audience back in the days of the Empress Dowager and her son, have come off once again."
Derek Yee is a magic solar baby sent Earthbound by a benevolent god, raised by an old carpenter, has martial art superpowers and "green kryptonite" loses them during solar eclipses. That's when the evil baby counterpart shows up. Demon-paced martial arts action by Jackie Chan's kung-fu classmates Yuan Pin and Yuen Hua compliments Toho Studio style special optical effects.
Linda Lin Dai struggles with The Blue forces of freedom, love, the sea and the sky, and The Black, the bottomless pit of evil. Lin’s poignant performance is memorable, however, it is that of newcomer Angela Yu Chien, who was named Best Supporting Actress. Part I ends with a literal cliffhanger, setting the stage for the equally memorable Part II.
Another iconoclastic work from the action auteur Chang Cheh, and winner of Honourable Mention for Dramatic Feature at the 13th Golden Horse Awards, 7-MAN ARMY retells the legend of seven patriots during the Sino-Japanese War. In 1933, 20,000 Japanese soldiers and 50 tanks invaded the Pa Tou Lou Tzu, a strategic key point of the Great Wall. With only seven men stationing, these heroes took on the entire army for five days before succumbing. When the Japanese entered the building to find the seven battered bodies, they buried them in honor and recognized them as "The Seven Heroes of China" in the Japanese military records.
David Chiang, Ti Lung, Chen Kuan-tai, Alexander Fu Sheng
There is no Chinese novel more famous than Journey To The West; and while there have been many movie adaptations, this memorable version presents a unique interpretation with humour, action, and fantasy galore. Ho Fan (who later became a celebrated erotic film director) plays the monk who undertakes a journey for Buddhist scriptures, encountering Monkey, Pigsy, and a damsel in distress (played by the actress named "The Most Beautiful Creature In China"), among many fun and fascinating others.
Extraordinary filmmaker Wong Jing, known for his crazy comedies and thrillers, has now combined both the horror and romantic comedy genres to tell the tale of a man who is both blessed and cursed... he resists females with an innate power that is forced onto him by a dark wizard. Finally it's up to his true love and a skilled sorcerer to get them to the church on time!
Kwan leads a double life as a waitress and as an infamous outlaw, The Black Butterfly. When she steals a cache of gold from the Five Devils Rock bandits, she soon has the bandits, and the government, on her tail.