This is certainly no tame squeakquel.
More an exuberant throwback to fan-favourite 1980s Hong Kong martial arts movies, with fight scene stacked upon fight scene, shamelessly caricatured gwailo villains, a breezily achieved period setting, and at times (e.g. the fish market) quite thrilling fight choreography. Flawed, without a doubt. Cheesy, yes. The plot is uninspired, the violence unnecessarily excessive at times (Sammo’s face gets a real work out) and there’s emotionally flat filler like the re-introduction of Simon Yam’s character. … (read more)
If you’re a regular reader of sites with an interest in Asian cinema on the net, you probably already know all about Sha Po Lang (SPL). You’ve read all four very positive reviews on twitchfilm, you’ve read Grady’s review at Kaiju Shakedown, and you know what’s what. A modern Hong Kong film, starring three very well-respected martial arts stars from different backgrounds, with a gritty, crime setting and a lot of neon lights and breaking glass. A … (read more)
Project A, made in 1983, marked Jackie Chan’s return to the Hong Kong film industry after his first attempt to crack the American film market (resulting in Battle Creek Brawl and a cameo in Cannonball Run). It reunited the three opera school brothers — Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao — in a huge period comedy with a very liberal dose of action scenes, and earned a ridiculous amount of money at the HK box office at … (read more)
Skinny Tiger, Fatty Dragon is one of the later films from the kung fu comedy triumvirate of Sammo Hung, Karl Maka and Lau Kar Wing. They’d worked together a decade earlier, producing a string of excellent period kung fu films, like The Odd Couple, Knockabout and Dirty Tiger, Crazy Frog. In 1990, though, they reteamed to make this film, a contemporary action movie chronicling the (possibly even madcap, or zany) exploits of two cops, Skinny Tiger (Karl Maka) … (read more)
Fortune Star in Hong Kong have done us the incredible favour of releasing the Sammo Hung Action Collection, comprising three great films: hopping vampire flick Spooky Encounters, the Lam Sai Wing (student of Wong Fei Hung) story Magnificent Butcher, and this one, Knockabout.
Knockabout stars an actor who really deserved many more starring roles, given his incredible gifts as an acrobat and screen martial artist. I am, of course, talking about Yuen Biao, youngest of the … (read more)