雙馬連環 (1979)
The Mystery of Chess Boxing


Reviewed by: PAUL MARTINEZ
Date: 05/14/2007
Summary: A guilty Pleasure

This film might be a little silly at times but the great Fighting sequences make you forget all that. Mark Lung was great as the villain. I don't care for Simon Yuen all that much but as I said earlier, some awesome battles we're worth the fluff in-between.

As for the reviewer taking shots at the Wu Tang Clan. They never "ripped off" anything. They openly stated that they took their love of the martial arts film genre and intergrated it in their music. Its a homage they're paying and I for one salute them for it. They've even gone as far as having many older kung fu movies re-released in the US on DVD in their originally dubbed format. So now asian cinema can be seen and enjoyed by a new generation.

As for the film, I really recommend it to anyone who loves old school non-wire work kung fu.

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: Inner Strength
Date: 06/12/2002
Summary: Another classic

The unofficial sequel to the 7 Grandmasters is definitely as good as the original, if not slightly better. Once again, the powerful kung fu scenes are all there, thanks to the presence of Lee Yi Min and Jack Lung once again. Probably more comedy too than the original, considering you have Simon Yuen doing his old routine again as seen in films like Drunken Master.

Definietly one of my favorite old Kung Fu films for sure.

[4/5]


Reviewed by: Magical Rice
Date: 07/07/2001
Summary: Go ahead, you know you want to rent it...

This is a cool movie.

There's a bit of comedy in it, but I think it helped lighten up what would be a few dry spots.

Really cool "new kid must serve rice to everyone" scenes (there's more than one, showing the progress of his training).

The Ghost Face Killer is a pretty limber dude with some odd, but impressive moves. Note that the unoriginal rap group, Wu Tang Clan, ripped this movie off for one of it's music videos. They also stole their names from Wu Tang MA flics - hence their Ghost Faced Killah (Gee, how original... dumbasses).

If you watch this movie and like it, then take a look at (Shaolin) MASTER KILLER (also known as the 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN). You'll like that too.

I give it a 7 out of 10.

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: SBates
Date: 02/23/2001
Summary: Ah! Joseph Kuo Comes to HKMDB!!!!

Ninja Checkmate, aka Mystery of Chess Boxing, was a somewhat legendary film where I grew up (Queens NY, early 80's). Along with FIVE VENOMS, this was one film every kid who loved kung fu films always talked about.It's reputation as one of the best is a bit unfounded, but it is nevertheless a very good kung fu film.My thoughts on J Kuo:
Joseph Kuo is my favorite old-time kung fu filmmaker. His films have such a daffy brilliance, they are weird, unique, and sometimes profound. In conventional terms they may be sometimes sloppy, poorly scripted, badly dubbed. But that's not what makes his movies interesting. The have these touches of surrealism and abstractness that other famous kung fu films really lack, and it's something I find endlessly fascinating.
Anyway, this film is a somewhat standard kung-fu comedy training film, in the vein of Eagle's Shadow. the fights are quite good, in the acrobatic style. Jack Long is elegant as the old chess master, and Mark long suitably nasty as the Ghost Face Killer. This is rather tame Joseph Kuo, very conventional by his standards.
The best scene in the film, however, is where one of the ghost Face Killer's intended victims, an old kung fu teacher, tells his students to evacuate the school, because GFK is on the way. A very poignant scene ensues where one by one, we see the students sadly get up off their knees and reluctantly leave the school, while the dejected master hangs his head in the foreground.
It's these bizare touches make J. Kuo so good.