Reviews by Country
For the first few minutes, Heart of Dragon — often found with “a” bonus article between “the” second and third word — could have you guessing. The opening shot would be at home in a classic kung fu film. Moments later a yellow-bandanna-sporting Jackie Chan is pulling a funny face in close up. And then… is Jackie really machine-gunning a bunch of uniformed men without blinking? After the opening scene though, Heart of Dragon gets on with being what is … (read more)
This movie is ridiculous. I mean that in the best sense of the word, as in over-the-top silliness, expertly crafted to make you grin with glee or cringe with incredulity depending on your familiarity with Hong Kong’s special filmic sauce — equal parts broad visual gags, verbal comedy that doesn’t quite translate, kinetic action and a pinch or two of political incorrectness, all boiling down to a bubbling broth of good old fashioned fun.
Just look at that cast list! … (read more)
Eastern Condors is a hell of a lot of fun, and an interesting film to boot. It’s a modern war film (set in post-war Vietnam) which is a quite a rarity in Hong Kong cinema. It’s also got a very strong cast of late-80’s action stars, including Sammo Hung (who also directs), Yuen Biao, Yuen Wah, Corey Yuen, Yuen Woo-ping (in an acting role), Lam Ching-Ying, Chin Kar Lok… the list goes on and on.
The story starts in America, … (read more)
Sammo Hung’s been in the film industry a long time and has produced, directed or acted in a huge number of films, working with virtually every major martial arts actor in the business: his younger brothers-in-Opera Jackie Chan (Project A, Wheels on Meals and more) and Yuen Biao, Bruce Lee, Jet Li, Donnie Yen, Wu Jing, Lau Kar Leung, Lau Kar Wing… the list goes on. The Prodigal Son is lauded by many as one of his best, … (read more)
Made in 1983, this was shelved, then released in 1986 to cash in on the success of A Better Tomorrow. For about one minute it’s a good film. Unfortunately, there’s 84 more minutes, none of them remotely good.
This is regarded as Woo’s first stumbling step in the Heroic Bloodshed genre, and he’s disowned this because the studio added soft core sex and extra gore without his approval. If it were mine, I’d disown it out of sheer embarrassment. … (read more)