į}\ҫ (1979)
Struggle Through Death


Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 12/28/2005
Summary: Lots of both struggle and death

A few adjectives jump out as descriptives for this film. Patchy, grim and cruel. Not a great deal happens for the first 45 minutes or so, apart from frequent beatings of the convicts by the guards, and earnest pleas from the doctor for them to stop causing trouble. As the other reviewer says, the story really gets going when John Liu starts kicking. But even then, the story falls into a few dead spots, and only the last quarter is solid and entertaining fu fighting.

There's not a lot of humour to be had, except for occasional light relief by Ngai Ping Ngo. It's mostly punishment, suffering and complaints. This made most of the film hard to watch. The cruel treatment, which often did not involve kung fu, was something to be fast-forwarded through.

The fight scenes in the second half are uniformly excellent, and are sufficient reason to grit one's teeth through the cruelty.

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: MasterArts
Date: 06/21/2002
Summary: The beatings of a man

That about sums it up. The heroes just get beat through the first hour of the movie, then they get beat off and on for the next half hour. It starts off as an old useless flail fest. But actually, the martial arts is fairly descent. I was very surprise to see the villains fast and a little crisp considering. Of course you knew when Johnny gets going the movie will pick up. And it did, considerably. But that doesn't take away the fact that Liu gets beat to oblivion first, along with the rest of the good guy cast. Bad guys wearing capes again in this one, seems to be the trend at the time. Overall, it's a very descent kung fu movie. Screw the "if you got nothing better to do" review. Watch it because of the sheer enjoyment of a descent kung fu film. Well, that was a bit extreme. Crazy!!