The 18th century reign of Emperor Chien Lung has proven to be a treasure trove for Hong Kong filmmakers, and director Li Han-Hsiang, the acknowledged master of the costume drama, made a series of four blockbusters about the dashing young swashbuckler's exploits. The scenario won the Best Adapted Screenplay Award at the 1979 Golden Horse Awards, and told of the monarch's incognito journey from Beijing to southern China... and imperial mayhem that ensues!
Whenever acclaimed martial arts film director Liu Chia-liang directs his half-brother Gordon Liu Chia-hui as a Shaolin monk hero, it's guaranteed that the film will not only become a classic but that it will rock the very foundation of martial arts cinematic culture. DISCIPLES OF THE 36TH CHAMBER is no exception to the rule. Gordon Liu Chia-hui reprises his famed role as Shaolin Monk San Te, the real life Shaolin hero that created THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN. In this film, San Te protects other real life Shaolin hero Fang Shih-yu (Hsiao Hou), who seems to enjoy stepping on the wrong Manchu foot at the right time. As always with director Liu Chia-liang, the final fight scene leaves you gawking in wild-eyed wonderment.
Incredibly, the title serpent is not a harbinger of horror, but actually the film's hero. This virtuous viper sniffs out bombs, fights gangs, battles a baby-killing rodent and even takes on a duplicitous woman. This one-of-a-kind thriller will be applauded by reptile fans everywhere.
With Hong Kong cinema's new wave, high flying, martial arts action of the 1980's, came a new wave of actors; teeny-bopper, canto-pop singer/stars with little or no martial arts background. However, when a film like LITTLE DRAGON MAIDEN intelligently mixes the old with the new, the results are pure golden magic. This costume-action, drama, love story features relative newcomer Leslie Cheung, who falls in love with the Dragon Maiden while learning the art of swordplay. The recipe is complete when veteran kung-fu stars Chen Kuan-tai and Lo Lieh add just enough weapon-wielding spice to make this film really cook. Cheung garnered international recognition in John Woo's A BETTER TOMORROW and Ronny Yu's THE BRIDE WITH WHITE HAIR.
Leslie Cheung, Weng Tsing-tsing, Chen Kuan-tai, Liu Hsueh-yua
Betty Ting Pei stars as a singer from Taipei who comes to Hong Kong in search of her missing sister; nearly getting raped by a street gang and rescued by a handsome composer. Among the girls she meets during her investigation are "queen of Shaw kung-fu", Lily Li, and elegant Ouyang Sha-fei. It's all handled with taste and verve by the studio's Japanese import, writer/director Inoue Umetsugu, who made viewers rediscover Hong Kong's splendors and dangers with an outsider's perspective.
Betty Ting Pei, Yang Fan, Lily Li, Ou Yen-ching, Hsia Ping
The thrills continue in the second part of this cherished adventure, created by the renowned director Chu Yuan and ingenious novelist Chin Yung. Only the union of the title weapons can save the six remaining martial arts sects who are vying for mastery. So just sit back and enjoy the movie event which spawned a legacy that continues even today with a long-running, internationally loved television series, a role-playing game, and even collectible replicas of the Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre themselves!
The crazy bumpkin returns in a sequel for more bittersweet laughs and heart-wrenching misfortune, as his true love becomes the wife of an abusive husband and his uncle further exploits his naïve nature.
This glorious pageantry was awarded Honourable Mention for Drama at the 2nd Golden Horse Awards. Li Li-hua gives a magnificent performance as Wu Tse-tien, the most famous woman in China's more than four thousand year history. The screen fairly bursts with royalty, intrigue, tragedy, and triumph as the script charts her from her teenage years to old age.
Li Li-hua, Chao Lei, Chiao Chuang, Lo Chi, Yu Feng-chi
Hsieh Choun, the Black Dragon, is in trouble with the police since Wang Sien Tien's gang is helping them; he is no longer free to conduct his drugs shipments out of the port freely as he used to. He buys more thugs and killers to dispose of the young upstart, and soon Wang is in dire straits, in the port of Hong Kong.
The Boxer Rebellion was one of the most incredible events in China's long history. Infuriated by the Western Imperialist power's intrusion into their country, the masses trusted rabble rousers who maintained that they had developed a kung-fu which was impervious to bullets...leading to wholesale slaughter at the enemies' guns. The "godfather of the kung-fu film," Chang Cheh, was given one of the highest budgets to date to tell this sweeping war story of disillusionment and revenge. Kung-fu choreographer Liu Chia-liang led an all-star fighting cast featuring international favorite Alexander Fu Sheng and Shaw Brothers' villain supreme Wang Lung-wei. Even the most avid fans of BLOODY AVENGERS, the heavily edited U.S. version of this film, will find this uncut, uncropped original a welcome revelation.
Action auteur Chang Cheh accomplished one of the most memorable historical dramas to come out of Shaw Brothers in the 1960s, and became a pioneer at the golden age of martial arts cinema. Featuring the 20-year-old swimming champion and future action star Wang Yu. Set in the final years of the Ming Dynasty, three brave heroes stand against a power-hungry official, and cross-path with three gorgeous beauties. It's two magnificent trios in one film!
Director Wong Jing is widely regarded as one of the founding fathers of the gambling genre films, and now Shaw Showcase brings to you one of his earliest blockbusters from two decades ago. Starring genre icon Shih Hsien with the stellar cast of Wang Yu, Huang Chin-sang, Chen Kuan-tai and Huang Hsing-hsiu. Embedded with Japanese spies, Shanghai tycoons, beautiful starlets, and enough twists and turns on the gambling table, Challenge Of The Gamesters promises to deliver superb entertainment.
Wang Yu, Huang Chin-sang, Shih Hsien, Chen Kuan-tai, Huang Hsing-hsiu
Tragic deaths in the underworld cause leader "Yama" (Teng Wei-hao) to suspect a portrait in crystal with mysterious powers. He sends Hen Pan (Chen Hung) and Pai Pan (Hung Hsin-nan) to interrogate its creator, martial artist Lung Fei (Pai Piao)...