Incredibly, the title serpent is not a harbinger of horror, but actually the film's hero. This virtuous viper sniffs out bombs, fights gangs, battles a baby-killing rodent and even takes on a duplicitous woman. This one-of-a-kind thriller will be applauded by reptile fans everywhere.
This film was actually a lively forerunner to the gambling film craze, which eventually swept Asian cinema. Here, it's cardsharp versus cardsharp with a lot more kung-fu action, in a battle of wits and fists to become the king of the casino. The double stings and triple crosses raise in complexity and imagination until what started as an unusual box office risk became a top ten hit of 1976.
Huangmei Opera movies like The Pearl Phoenix are unique to 1960s Hong Kong culture, a product of the Swinging Sixties but considerably more in touch with their Chinese roots. This one is completed with a gender-bending tale where the male lead is played by a female posing as a man, plus movie queen Li Ching and the singing voices of Ivy Ling Po and Jing Ting. Sit back and enjoy!
Ling Hsiao (Lo Lieh) and Kuan Wang-lung (Chang Pei-shan) both work as guards for the Tien Ying Treasury House - an establishment that offers its clients storage and safe transportation for their money or valuables. Kuan Wang-lung is secretly in love with Fang Yen (Yang Ai-hua), the grand-daughter of his boss. But she is attracted to Ling Hsiao and ignores Kuan. Kuan wonders how he can get rid of his rival...
One of Shaw's darlings of the screen, Lily Ho (Casino, The Water Margin) gives a heart-warming performance as Chef-chi, in this Cinderella comedy and romance. At a party, Chef falls in love with the son (Lin Feng) of a rich man that her father (Cheng Chun-mien, Hong Kong's answer to Elvis Presley) works as a chauffeur for. Being from such a poor family, Chef can't reveal who she is or what her father does for a living. Her father is furious that she has fallen for the boss' boy; does she have no class conscience? Mayhem, drama and a run of hilarious circumstances ensue. This asks us, can love truly cross class boundaries?
In 1975, Ho Meng-hua, master of the "esoteric weapon" kung-fu thriller, started an international sensation with The Flying Guillotine. But while he went on to direct such further "crazy cutlery" hits as The Dragon Missile, popular demand insisted upon a sequel to the original decapitator-on-a-chain. So, first, they got a script by a trio of writers, featuring a new, improved "Ring-Chain Flying Guillotine" and the only weapon that can stop it, the "Toothed Wheel". Next they matched Cheng Kang, the director of their popular true crime thriller The Criminals, with Hua Shan, the director of their superheroes Super Inframan, to double-team the project. Then they cast some of the best martial arts actors in their repertory - all ably choreographed by the often unsung, but universally respected Tang Chia. Finally they filmed Ti Lung as a fugitive from the emperor’s cruelty, against the whole F.G. gang in a blade-on-blade battle to the headless death!
The incredible talents of Ivy Ling Po have no better showcase than this melodramatic musical. Huangmei Opera's number one queen plays a young scholar who is manipulated into marrying a nobleman's reluctant daughter. After marrying, he soon discovers the reason for her hesitation. She is stricken with a contagious disease. But, true love prevails as it always does. Skillfully helming this poetic romance is Lo Wei, a protegee of kung-fu master Chang Cheh
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.
Director Chow Sze-loke brings to you one of the most famous stories from the renowned Chinese novel, The Water Margin. The Amorous Lotus Pan tells the story of a poor but beautiful girl, Lotus Pan (the radiant Diana Chang Chung-wen). Cruelly labelled "a delight to all men", Pan is raped by her young master. Stained with a past such that she is unable to be wedded to a rich man, she is then married to a midget who treats her like an animal. Lost and alone, Pan falls for his brother, playboy Wu Song (Paul Chang Chung)... but beautiful women do not have things easy. Pan is also lusted after by the murderous Men Ching (Pai Yun) and unwittingly becomes a pawn in the game of lust, egoistic desires and cruelty as she becomes the unwilling conspirator and ultimately, the victim in a vicious game of macho bravado and murder!
Chang Chung-wen, Pai Yun, Paul Chang-chung, Hung Wei, Li Kun, Chin Jen-shu
It's this critically-acclaimed tale of mystery and the supernatural as well as swordplay. From its very first moment, the viewer knows they are in for something special, given that the protagonists are ex-swordmasters who now find joy in the creation of umbrellas. The intriguing sequences continue as our umbrella makers track down a kung-fu zombie burial party led by a disappearing hunchback carrying a red coffin which is filled with a living dead heroine. And that's just the start of an adventure pitting an umbrella maker against a zombie maker, who possesses the mythical title and power. Mystery thrills, horror chills and kung-fu spills await anyone fighting Madame Kung Sun's 'Finger Of Doom'.
Ivy Ling Po , Chin Han , Po Chih-hsien , Chen Feng-chen
The noted actress Li Li-hua, star of more than sixty films since 1947, beautifully portrays the drugged, then disgraced wife of a peddler in the waning days of the Ching Dynasty. To make matters worse, she's soon framed for her husband’s murder by her rapist - the son of the local magistrate! And even that isn’t the end of her woes. It's best to have a box of tissues nearby as two expert directors ratchet up the emotional suspense in this consummate tearjerker.
Li Li-hua, Kao Pao-shu, Ouyang Sha-fei, Kwan Shan, Ku Wen-chung
Prominent kung-fu actor David Chiang teams up with Chang Cheh's award winning screenwriter Ni Kuang to create a visual masterpiece full of exotic martial arts skills and fights in Shaolin Hand Lock. Chiang, who learned the secret 'Shaolin Handlock' technique from his father, is on a mission to avenge his father's death, which was ordered by the evil Ling Hao, played by Shaw Brothers' penultimate bad guy, kung-fu star, Lo Lieh. Adding to the great success of this film was the glamorous yet outlandishly inventive action sequences staged by acclaimed martial arts choreographer Tang Chia and an imposing visual edge and meticulously stylish directing by the brilliant director Ho Meng-hua who was responsible for giving early film breaks to Jackie Chan and Sammo Hung.
Applauded director Li Han-Hsiang was one of few directors that made soft porn acceptable by mainstream audiences; using the thematic device of "sex on a mission" cynicism, suggesting that sex was the ultimate power. In the sex comedy The Scandalous Warlord, the true power that drove the country's many warlords were the prostitutes that these men would routinely visit. Therefore, the power in this film lies in the hands of the sassy Shirley Yu and the titillating Shaw Yin-Yin.