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Hei Meigui

What is the most recent Shaw Brother's film you've seen?

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We have talked about which ones we want to see and which ones we want to own, but what was the most recent Shaw Brother's film you have seen and how was it?

 

Last night I saw Spiritual Boxer (1975) Starring Wang Yue (not Jimmy Wang Yu). This was directed by Lau Kar Leung so you know that the action was on point! He even had a cameo as one of the towns people in the movie having a fighting scene. This was his directorial debut and he also was the action director. Wang Yue did a great job leading the movie and it was a great mix of fighting humor and fun. There were brief cameo's by Ti Lung, Chen Kuan-Tai, and Wilson Tong Wai-Shing that really didn't make much sense as they were in the intro only and not in the rest of the film. I guess the intro was to set the stage for the concept of Spiritual Boxing It was basically a "training" scene. It may have also been that since this was one of Wang Yue's first leading roles, their names may have been a draw to movie goers. This movie employs the troupe of including a female who is initially mistaken for a male. It was actress Lin Chen Chi, but I have not seen that played out in this type of modern setting. (It wasn't current day, but it was not a period piece). Wang Yue's character is a scam artist who after his Master is arrested, get's into a series of situation that take him from con artist, to revered savior and master of a small town bullied by a gang leader played by Shut Chung Tin. Yue's character is able to become possessed by the spirits of fighting deities and have their power when in that altered state. His fighting in this movie is very good. His monkey King is priceless!

 

The movie has comedy (but not overly silly) drama, fights, heroism, a very engaging plot line, and a bit of romance! I would highly recommend this movie as I did not know what to expect having not read any reviews but thoroughly enjoyed it. This is one I would actually watch again soon! As this seems to have turned into a review I would actually give it a 5/5.

 

Here is the listing for it http://www.hkcinemagic.com/en/movie.asp?id=1177

 and here is the official trailer. I bought the movie on iTunes

 

       
       
   

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Glad you liked it.

 

I am happy to own it, because the introduction is just so much fun and so transporting to me. The intro makes sense in that Lau was setting up "real" spiritual boxers and 'spirit possession' / Taoist magic as opposed to the charlatan fake out that Wang Yu performs through the rest of the movie. He was also setting the period around the time of the Boxer Rebellion so the introduction also gives a sense of era too. 

 

Me, I love that opening sequence. One of my favorite Shaw sequences ever and my favorite bit of Pops choreography* as it highlights CKT and TL's own martial prowess and allows them a little character. Ti injects so much of playful arrogance as that character, he's a lot of fun. 

 

I wish I could say I enjoyed the rest of the film. Nowhere near as much as that introduction.  Wang Yu is a tough sell for me. Most times he strikes out, once in a while he surprises me. 

 

*Yes, I may squee with delight over the awesomeness of Shaolin Mantis, but this sequence really knocks my socks off. 

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Glad you liked it.

I wish I could say I enjoyed the rest of the film. Nowhere near as much as that introduction.  Wang Yu is a tough sell for me. Most times he strikes out, once in a while he surprises me. 

 

*Yes, I may squee with delight over the awesomeness of Shaolin Mantis, but this sequence really knocks my socks off. 

I was really shocked I would like him carrying this whole movie. I loved him in Dirty Ho but that was a supporting role. I never thought I would think he would do well carrying the whole film. I can see what you meant about the intro and how it sets up the true spiritual boxers, but I think i was confused because in the intro they didn't turn into anything, they just had a spiritual superpower/invincibility to them. I think it would have been better if His master had then been one of the "real" ones who had just fallen on hard times, or if there had been some real ones trying also to ferret out the fakes. I am not a fan of the actors who are just plain silly comedic, I like to see a range of acting from them. I think it is a very interesting choice for Lar Kar Leung to pick him as the lead and not someone else, but I'm not sure what actor I would substitute in that role.

I think I really liked it as a comedic movie that wasn't all slapstick! It still kills me how they never know that the girl is the girl!!!

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Some interesting points, Hei.  I also like when comedic actors flex their acting muscles. 

 

The story I would liked to have seen is tihs:  Wang Yu attempted to join the real spiritual boxers shown in that intro rather than the story falling into the usual charlatan religious slant etc. They could employ a bit more comedy and turn out something a little bit more unique.  I think I would have rolled with Wang Yu's character more if that was the case. In my head that's how the story goes so for me this is a great short film. 

 

UPDATE: That's not Wang Yue in Judgement of An Assassin but Hau Cheng. Anyway...

 

  Wang Yu was adorable in Murder Plot (Panda the beggar master. A nice, slightly comedic role for him. He and David Chiang had to work in that film though, it's a royal mess.)

 

As for Yu, he hasn't pulled me as a lead, so I politely disagree about his ability to carry a movie. He can provide some good support. Part of this could be the script, and/or his acting style.

 

I am glad you liked him in this. In response to your wondering who else could fit that part: I think Fu Sheng or David Chiang would have worked just fine as that character (largely because of their work with Pops and Lau Kar Wing.)  :smile

 

Back to Spirtual Boxer:  I want more than a few minutes with Wilson Tong, dang it!  (I love that front flip he does during that scene and if I could pick one good guy to be my sifu, it's that character.) 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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If you haven't seen The proud youth, you should get it as soon as possible and you'll see how Wong Yue can be a great lead in a superb movie.

 

And I agree with you that Fu Sheng or David Chiang could have played Wong Yue's role in Spiritual boxer ; when Hei asked this question, it's their names that immediately came to my mind.

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Politely disagreeing ShawAngela: 

 

Beyond Chan Wai Man's super slimey Hao JieYing,  I am not really a fan of The Proud Youth.  I love  CWM and Sun Chung, but that movie is very difficult for me to get through (I've done so but only watch CWM's scenes now.)  

 

That said, Wong Yu does have good chemistry wtih CWM* and their scenes were enjoyable. 

 

Outside of those moments, did not see Wang Yu's lead potential.  To be fair, that was a rather lackluster script (and unlike Sun Chung's other films it was based on existing material.) Perhaps, he'll surprise me in something else. 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Hmm. I also think the Proud Youth is pretty awesome. Rendezvous with Death is another good leading role for Wong Yue.

 

Have you seen the Shadow Boxing? I believe it's supposed to be a sequel to spiritual boxer, I really enjoyed it. It's light on action, but may be the most genuinely funny movie I have seen from Pops.

 

I haven't seen Spiritual Boxer.

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Different Strokes, folks. Glad you all dig Wang Yu...he'll remain a support player for me. 

 

The last Shaws film I saw was The Weird Man which does live up to it's name from the 35 minute mark on.  Chu Ko in a diaper and a skirt, hrm. I'll forgive you and your bros Chu Ko especially since you leave me laughing and then slack-jawed with the wonderful acrobatics. 

 

Very OTT tweak on a character from The Romance of the Three Kingdoms (which I haven't read), and really I don't mind. It's the ghost of plucky nanwu / Taoist priest Ricky Cheng Tien-Chi and his five disciples against the baddies,with Cheng's spirit doing all sorts of spooktacular stuff, including spirit possession. And there's lot of stupidity and utter huh? 

 

But that's what makes it work for me. 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Yes, The shadow boxing is very good to, as well as Rendezvous with death. If I'm not mistaken, Wong Yue is also a lead in Kid from Kwantung and he was good in it.

And though it's mentioned as Spiritual boxer 2, The shadow boxing isn't a sequel to Spiritual boxer, it's a different story with different characters.

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lol!! Am I going to have to start a Wang Yue thread!! I think I will!! I'm sure that

Different Strokes, folks. Glad you all dig Wang Yu...he'll remain a support player for me. 

Lady will love that!!:bs_thumbsdown:

 

 

The Flying Dagger Custom DVD with the English Dub added is my most recent viewing.

Did you like it?

 

 

And I agree with you that Fu Sheng or David Chiang could have played Wong Yue's role in Spiritual boxer ; when Hei asked this question, it's their names that immediately came to my mind.

I can see Chiang Sheng playing the role also but I can not picture any of a romantic angle with him.

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Mercenaries from Hong Kong (1982) Suitably bonkers ex-Nam vets on a mission to kill a drug lord in Cambodia. Of course, all is not as it seems. Wong Jing's purposely OTT testosterone flooded kill fest is often funny and very, very predictable as far as the characters and scenarios go. I say, SO WHAT. This has moments of being so utterly nuts, you cannot help but have a good time. Of course, I love that Chan Wai Man is the berserker of the group and Ti Lung the ridiculously macho - not very smart leader. Yes, Wang Yue* has another supporting role here (as comedy relief more than anything else.)  *And my bad, I got Wang Yue and director Wong Jing mixed up, Wong Jing's Curry was pissing Wang Lung Wei off as much as possible.  Just unplug the brain and dive right in. 

 

House of Traps (1980). The intrigue surrounding the theft of the priceless objects and picking out the various Chang Cheh acrobatic luminaries as they weave in and out of the title house makes this a good rewatch. The house itself isn't as Argento-like as I'd hoped, but it's a fun movie. Besdies, where else will you see Lu Feng wearing butterfly headgear (It's okay Lu...you wear it well.) Enjoyed catching Ricky Cheng Tien-Chi and Chu Ko this time around too. (Man, Chu Ko can rock the fake facial hair.) 

 

*Hei, go for it. You won't get any complaints from me.  :tongueout

 

 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Temperament of Life (1975) sporting cameos from the two gents  I won't shut up about, beyond those moments, it wasn't really my thing. This non-martial arts dramedy centers around a greedy landlord, his sweet wife and the young, often destitute tenants who live in their building. It's pretty much As The Stomach Turns, but the three young men who live in one apartment are hired as temporary actors playing bailiffs / cops in a court room drama, and that film set is where David Chiang and Chan Wai Man 100% go for making fun of themselves. 

 

Chan is appearing before the judge defending himself against the rape of neighbor... well, actually defending his dog from forcing itself on the neighbor's dog.  The initial blame was almost as funny as Chan's awful checkered jacket (probably the only time I've seen Chan wear unflattering 70s clothes, as he rocks them as well as David Chiang did.)  

 

So that awkward scene aside, here comes David Chiang's cool, anti-authority cat whose blatant disorder in the court leads to bribes and walking off scoff free. Or that's how the scene is supposed to play, as one of the young tenants in their extras role screws things up, resulting in David's "famous movie star" erupting into full blown diva mode. 

 

If you haven't seen David Chiang making fun of his Hong Kong kung fu personas, the guy has a very natural flair for comedy. He is not afraid to make fun of himself and just dives right in.  That willingness to do so, endeared him to me just a bit more. I really enjoy Chiangs' self effacing comedy  in A Mad World of Fools, The Legend of the Owl and The Imposter. Chiang's two minutes of temperamental movie star brat here cracked me up and made the movie. I was hoping to get another chuckle like that just to prove my biases wrong, but no.  Ti Lung and Chen Kuan Tai had blink and you'll miss them cameos, but overall, I'd say skip this one as there isn't enough comedy to keep all the soap opera subplots with the landlord and his tenants afloat. 

 

 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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the brotherhood was excellent. Again solid performance by Liu Yung as sort of righteous thug. Good storyline about betrayal and hunger for power with some good fighting and excellent ending. Highly recommended.

 

:monk_eating:

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Winner Takes All (1982) Sadly, not the complete wonkazoid goof fest I was expecting. But still Chen Kuan Tai, CWM and even Wang Yue were very good sports here. And Lo Lieh was truly the best element of the film, he was funny.  I think Wong Jing was trying to channel a 1960s European spy / crime spoof with this and came up mostly empty. Ah well. 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Winner Takes All (1982) Sadly not the complete wonkazoid goof fest I was expecting. But still Chen Kuan Tai, CWM and even Wang Yue were very good sports here. And Lo Lieh was truly the best element of the film, he was funny.  I think Wong Jing was trying to channel a 1960s European spy / crime spoof with this and came up mostly empty. Ah well. 

Even though you said it wasn't very good, the comment about Lo Lieh being funny makes me want to see it. I haven't seen many comedic roles from him, but what I've seen he's pretty funny. Fists and Guts comes to mind...and man that finale.

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For a two minute cameo paimeifist (if that), I don't know if I'd say the film was worth it; but if you want the official Deltmac Taiwan copy for cheap and you're in the States PM me. I don't have copying capabilities, otherwise I'd hook you up that way.  :crying  (SMK, KF Bob if this is a no no to mention here... sorry about that.)

 

My favorite bit of sweet / WTH? Lo Lieh comedy is in The Enchantress, that's just a crazy film anyway. Have you seen that yet?

 

To get ready for one of my November Mutual movie reviews, I watched Five Element Ninjas again (like I need an excuse.):monk_swinging: 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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I haven't haven't seen the Enchantress yet. All I have heard about it (possibly selectively) is that Lo Lieh is great in it (from you), so it is another one my long "to watch" list.

 

Awh, only a cameo huh? Well maybe we can work something out anyway, it's always cool to see the "different" Shaw films. 

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Well, Lo and Anthony Lau Wing are 1000% committed in The Enchantress, it's definitely got horror elements and dang it, it is China vs. Japan to an extent. Lo's got a much meatier role in it compared to Winner Takes All and even Mercenaries from Hong Kong. 

 

 

 

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Portrait in Crystal (1982) Hrm... now it's Pia Paio's (Long Fei) turn to be a dumb ass.  Long Fei ignores the warnings in the Jade Manual and anoints his feminine crystal carving with his blood, thereby giving it life.  The Crystal Portrait as it's called goes around killing his adversaries, namely people related to the Poison Yama.  At first, Long Fei doesn't understand why all his old enemies want his hide, but then he finally realizes his Crystal Portrait is alive and goes in search of.  Meanwhile, Poison Yama's clan creates a lethal concoction that will make your stomach explode like a hot air balloon, only gorier.  They intend to use this on Long Fei. Um Yay! 

 

Okay, this wasn't quite what I was expecting, on the plus side the Crystal Portrait killer had a really cool design (her face almost looked like the mirrored glass you'd see on a disco ball), so there was that. I think this makes me appreciate Revenge of the Corpse a lot more now.

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Heroes of the East   This was a sweet, slightly comedic take on China vs. Japan. A nice display of skill and Gordon Liu was adorable. Nice to see Wilson Tong and Norman Chu among the Chinese school. I can see why people are so fond of it. A nice diversion from the more serious things I've been watching. Pops as So was pretty great too. And I love  Yasuaki Kurata in this. 

Edited by Lady Jin Szu-Yi

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Heroes of the East is in my opinion one of the finest examples of classic Martial arts films. I think the average movie snobs would even have a hard time turning their nose up at this.

 

My favorite movie from Pops/Gordon.

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