Enter The Fat Dragon (1978)

Reviewed by Ken Hashibe
May 4, 2014

 

MOVIE INFO
CAST
Sammo Hung • Lee Hye-Sook • Ankie Lau Heung-Ping • Peter Yang Kwan • Leung Kar-Yan
Aka
None
DIRECTOR
Sammo Hung
CHOREOGRAPHER(S)
Sammo Hung
YEAR RELEASED
1978
MOVIE SOURCE
Version reviewed was in widescreen format. Cantonese language with embedded English subtitles.
Purchase & Info
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PlOT
Sammo Hung plays Ah-Lung, a Bruce Lee fanatic, as he is sent to Hong Kong to work at his uncle’s food stall. Things don’t work out well after he beats up customers and sometimes fellow workmates. His abilities then come in handy when he has to save his friend, Chen from the notorious bad guys, including Professor “Holy Crap, this is actually our main villain” Pai and his hilarious to say the least henchmen.
thoughts on the movie

Enter the Fat Dragon is commonly mistaken as a Bruceploitation film starring a young Sammo Hung, but this movie was really made to put those impersonators to shame and show respect to Sammo Hung’s idol. The action in this movie is fantastic slapstick (but definitely not as impressive as Sammo’s later works), the jokes are super silly and funny, and the music by Frankie Chan suits the movie very well and is able to imitate Lalo Schifrin’s compositions as well as Sammo Hung can impersonate Bruce Lee. If you like kung fu comedy fluff, this movie is well worth your time.

was it funny?
Yes. There is an abundance of silly comedy in this movie, some jokes hit bullseyes, while others may just make you chuckle. A lot of the comedy comes from Sammo’s performance. His impersonation is spot-on and probably better than most other impersonators at the time. There’s also great comedic setups including “the white car scene.” The villains in this movie are also great fun, including Professor Pai, the overly enthusiastic and bug eyed villain, with his just as hilarious henchmen including Leung Kar-Yan, a white guy, and Lee Hoi Sang as a black guy. If you thought just seeing him was funny, just wait for when he starts talking!
How was the Action?

The action in this movie is also great, mainly consisting of fight scenes. These scenes show off Sammo’s physical prowess. His drunken snake fight and the final fight are highlights and contain a ton of slapstick. There aren’t any training scenes, but there is a moment where Sammo pulls out nunchucks. A lot of the fights use traditional movements and many silly variations of them.

Standout performance(s)

Sammo’s Bruce Lee impersonation definitely deserves some recognition. The main villains also turn in some ridiculously entertaining performances and most of the others actors are pretty good. Don’t expect any award winning performances though.

Watch or Pass
6 Reasons Why You Should WATCH or PASS On This Movie
1. WATCH for the hilarious quartet of villains.
2. PASS if you don’t like comedy with your fu.
3. WATCH for a movie that shows respect towards Bruce Lee.
4. PASS if you don’t like burnt on subtitles (the ones where if you pan to something white, then you won’t be able to see them easily).
5. WATCH for a great performance by a young Sammo Hung.
6. WATCH for one of the best examples of a great kung fu comedy.
FINAL NOTES

There is a multitude of cameos from soon-to-be-famous actors. Yuen Biao, I think, appears in this movie twice in two different roles. You may also be able to see Meng Hoi playing three different roles. An actual Bruce Lee impersonator, Tony Leung Siu Hung appears in this movie…as a Bruce Lee impersonator. Mars, Chiu Chi Ling (better known as the tailor from Kung Fu Hustle), Lam Ching Ying, and Chung Faat all make appearances. Eric Tsang even has a small (yet completely unnecessary) role. This isn’t just a good homage film, but also a good “look-at-how-young-they-are” film.

RATING