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A band of robbers steal a treasure map and split it into eight pieces, one for each member, and vow to regroup three years later. But a determined cop will stop at nothing to hunt down the criminals. Written by
Shaolin Deadly Kicks offers a spaghetti western plot nicely adapted to the Martial Arts genre and a lot of well-choreographed and nicely filmed high-kicking action.
A group of hardened criminals have stolen a treasure map in a widely publicized attack on a temple. To prevent their capture, they divide the map into eight pieces and agree to regroup in three years to locate the treasure. However, before they can do this, Tao-liang Tan shows up with other plans. This young man begins methodically taking out each member of the gang, until he meets his own weakness - which ironically turns out to be the Achilles heal of the gang-leader as well.
Despite some of the opinions expressed here on IMDb, Shaolin Deadly Kicks' plot is actually quite strong for the genre. Unlike many martial arts films, SDK does not wander aimlessly and none of the scenes come across as simple excuses for violence. The voice-talent is typically mediocre, but the physical acting and evocation of the pan-southeast Asian cast compensates for it.
Loke many non-American martial arts films, Shaolin Deadly Kicks has a fantastic/folkloric feel. Though it may not appeal to the standard American audience, it will certainly satisfy the martial arts film enthusiast.
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