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The Iron Bodyguard (1973)

Da dao Wang Wu (original title)
When legendary swordsman Wang Wu challenges the authority on a blanket arrest of men when really only one is guilty, his intervention (and its success) is observed by politician Tan Tzutung... See full summary »




(as I Kuan)

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Credited cast:
Kuan Tai Chen ...
Wang Wu
Hua Yueh ...
Tan Tzu-tung
Lily Li ...
Tan Chiao
Betty Pei Ti ...
'Camomile' Chin Chu-hua
Danny Lee ...
Hu Chi (as Li Hsiu-Hsien)
Ti Lu ...
'Iron Fist' Yen Feng
Tao Chiang ...
Fei Feng
Nan Chiang ...
Wen Ping
Lin Tung ...
Chung Li
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ching Po Chang ...
Yen's hired hand
Hsi Chang
Ti-Ko Chen
Yi-Hsiung Chi
Shao-Lin Chiang ...
Brothel patron
Tien-Chu Chin ...
Village bystander


When legendary swordsman Wang Wu challenges the authority on a blanket arrest of men when really only one is guilty, his intervention (and its success) is observed by politician Tan Tzutung who tries to buy him a drink but is rebuffed. Later, Wang is attacked while getting his hair braided and Tan assists him, making them friends and allowing them to talk. Tan is a reformer but there are moves against such men and Wang knows it. He enlists Wang's help but within the world of politics nothing is to be trusted and soon the friends are in great danger in the name of their reforming efforts. Written by bob the moo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Adventure





Release Date:

8 December 1973 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Le gorille de fer  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

The action comes late!
3 August 2003 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

The film starts out slow and unfortunately never gets off the ground, despite several well-choreographed fights towards the end. Square-jawed martial arts actor Chen Kuan-tai is the title character, known in the film as "Big Blade" Wang Wu. He's the owner of a security company whose constant efforts to thwart the unjust treatment of criminals by corrupt imperial Qing officials turns into outright rebellion when he joins a budding and idealistic official in helping reformists to evade capture. Near the end of the Qing Dynasty, the Empress Dowager is clamping down on efforts by reformists to bring an end to imperialism in China. Arrested for his subversions, Tan Si-gong (Yuen Hua) willingly gives himself up as a martyr for the cause while Wang Wu and his loyal employees plot to save him before its too late.

What really comes too late for Iron Bodyguard is the action. This collaboration between directors Chang Cheh and Baau Hok-li is definitely not one of Cheh's better films, although it shares many familiar elements. The male bonding and heroic bloodshed are in place, but the film drags hideously slow through too much chatter amid a clumsily put together drama before hitting an anti-climatic finale.

The best fight actually takes place in the end when Kuan-tai leads an ambush meant to free Yuen Hua. Kuan-tai displays great skill in dispatching countless spearmen with his "knife" (sabre). If only Lau Kar-leung and Tong Gaai could have had more opportunities to work their creative magic on choreography.

So I recommend this movie for a rainy day. I gave it 6/10 (I wanted a lil bit more action, it came so late!)

2 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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