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Fo zhang luo han quan (1980)

 |  Action  |  7 May 1980 (Hong Kong)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 302 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 5 critic

Aspiring barber and experienced kung-fu fighter Shang learns that his childhood friend, Siu Ming, has been framed for murder by an unknown villain. When Shang begins looking into the crime,... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Shun-Yee Yuen ...
Shang (as Yuen Shun I)
Siu Ming Tsui ...
Si-Ming
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lung Chan ...
Yu
Hsi Chang
Shao-Peng Chen
Mei Sheng Fan ...
Fat Master (as Fan Mui Shung)
Pak-Kwong Ho
Tin Shing Hoh
Ti Hsieh
Hoi Sang Lee ...
Chen (as Lee Hoi Sung)
Shu-chan Ou
Kwai Shan ...
Mu-Chao Mu
Chin-Lai Sung ...
Fortune Teller (as Sai Aan Dai)
Jing Tang
David Wu ...
Police Captain
Edit

Storyline

Aspiring barber and experienced kung-fu fighter Shang learns that his childhood friend, Siu Ming, has been framed for murder by an unknown villain. When Shang begins looking into the crime, he soon finds himself the target of an assassination attempt. Who is behind all these crimes, and can Shang stop them? Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hand to hand combat | See All (1) »

Genres:

Action

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Details

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Release Date:

7 May 1980 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Fat San Lo Hon kuen  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

 
It blows all the recent martial arts films out of the water!!
2 July 2007 | by (Bournemouth, England(UK)) – See all my reviews

I have been a fan of martial arts films for ages; I was always slightly disappointed that the emphasis would often be on ridiculously convoluted plots rather than being focused on the fights themselves. Thankfully this is not the case with "Buddhist Fist"; the plot centres around a pair of childhood friends who go their separate ways in their teens, a few years later one is recalled home after events transpire in his home village. He is now a hairdresser (a bad one) & in traditional Kung-fu cinema style has a clumsy sidekick in tow; whilst the other friend is a Buddhist monk at the village temple. Not wanting to spoil the film for anybody, that's all I will reveal, but essentially it is the tale of what occurs to the two friends as the village is manipulated by the bad guy, imaginatively titled "Big-small feet" (no prizes for guessing why!)

The stand-out moments from this title have to be the astoundingly choreographed fight scenes...I mean these sequences are AMAZING: it's as simple as that. I have seen more martial arts films than I've had hot dinners (almost)and these scenes are something else!! The fighting borders on dancing in places, it is so technical and astounding to watch, I mean I didn't know human beings were capable of such things. Also worthy of mention are the comedy moments; I never really liked the slapstick elements of martial arts films, like the ones in Jackie Chan films which are always way OTT(with sound effects to match), but they really work here...especially the hunchback "poisoner" whose special technique is "Holy Ghost Claw". Plus I challenge anybody not to laugh when the compulsory Master/Sensei pulls out his bag of tricks to upstage the youngsters with his moves..."Strength is improved: by form breathing..." Classic!!

Lots of these kinds of films are too heavy on the fights without justification. Films like "Mystery of chess boxing" for example, where there is a brief introduction similar to the rest, character gets wronged by indiscriminate bad guy, gets taught Kung-fu by a "master", becomes an unstoppable force for good, wins in the end...in that order. Buddhist fist on the other hand, balances out the fights with just the right amount of story in between & even attempts to provide sensible reasons for each encounter, instead of the usual "you tripped me up in the street; now defend yourself or die!". Each fight gets more and more frenetic until the energy-fuelled finale, which has to be seen to be believed.

There is no real nudity, no real gore, no romance element, but if these are the reasons you watch this kind of film, you're doing it for the wrong reasons IMHO; it's about the Kung-fu and the physical feats of the actors. Definitely in my top 5 martial arts films of all time, a lost gem from the hugely talented Yuen Wo Ping stable of the far east!


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