Shaolin firebrands Fang Shih-yu, Hung Hsi-kuan, and Hu Huei-chien are as famous in Asia as the Three Musketeers are in America and Europe. So when the "godfather of the kung-fu film," Chang Cheh decided to tell their stories with Alexander Fu Sheng, Chen Kuan-tai, and Chi Kuan-chi in the roles, it was cause for celebration.
The heroes are savage because the villains are brutal, cruel, and vicious. At first, a gang just wants the village locksmith to open a stolen safe, but it soon escalates into wholesale torment. Though reminiscent of The Seven Samurai, the director and his revered action choreographers, Liu Chia-liang and Tang Chia, design each of the many struggles with gritty depravity and desperate power. The result is an especially realistic, even grueling, exercise in suspense.
David Chiang, Ti Lung, Wang Chung, Chen Kuan-tai, Danny Lee