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Shaw Classics: Monkey – Journey To The West (1966)

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The Shaw Brothers loved adapting classical stories from Chinese literature and folklore: during their time as a motion picture studio they filmed several stories from the great classical novels (Journey to the West, The Water Margin, The Dream of the Red Chamber and The Golden Lotus, to start with). Hitherto, the only filmed version of Journey to the Westthat I had seen (other than Stephen Chow’s not-exactly-canonical Chinese Odyssey films) was the much-beloved Monkey! TV … (read more)

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Shaolin Hand Lock (1978)

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David Chiang (who seems to have become rather a staple of my DVD viewing of late, for some reason) returns to the martial arts genre with this film, from rather prolific Shaws director Ho Meng-hua. Also in the mix are Lo Lieh, perennial Shaws actor, and Michael Chan (Chen Hui-min), who’s still acting today, most recently in Enter the Phoenix, The Spy Dad and You Shoot, I Shoot.

Our story follows (naturally) David Chiang’s character, a young man … (read more)

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The Mighty Peking Man (1975)

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Well, well. My first real Shaw Brothers exploitation film. You can see the executives meeting to greenlight it: “Right, guys, let’s make a King Kong movie, but use the Connaught Centre, not the Empire State building. Using scale models and a guy in a big suit, like Godzilla. And some location shooting in India, with tigers and elephants. And a blonde wearing a square foot of animal skins, who swings through the trees on lianas. That’ll really sell tickets.”… (read more)

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