IMDb > Once Upon a Time in China (1991)
Wong Fei Hung
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Once Upon a Time in China (1991) More at IMDbPro »Wong Fei Hung (original title)

Photos (See all 14 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
Once Upon a Time in China -- Trailer for Once Upon A Time In China
Once Upon a Time in China -- Open-ended Trailer from Media Asia

Overview

User Rating:
7.4/10   11,929 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
No change in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Contact:
View company contact information for Once Upon a Time in China on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
15 August 1991 (Hong Kong) See more »
Tagline:
Never was a Hero needed more...
Plot:
Set in late 19th century Canton this martial arts film depicts the stance taken by the legendary martial... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
4 wins & 4 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(119 articles)
Touring the Movies that Influenced 'The Matrix'
 (From Rope Of Silicon. 22 July 2014, 3:17 PM, PDT)

Upi Boards "Rise of the Legend"
 (From Dark Horizons. 12 June 2014, 7:55 AM, PDT)

Teaser Poster For Wong Fei Hung Flick Rise Of The Legend Unveiled
 (From Twitch. 12 June 2014, 5:00 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Martial Arts Masterpiece See more (61 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Jet Li ... Wong Fei Hung
Biao Yuen ... Leung Fu
Rosamund Kwan ... Aunt Yee
Jacky Cheung ... Buck Teeth Soh
Steve Tartalia ... Tiger
Kent Cheng ... Porky Lang
Jonathan Isgar ... Jackson
Shi-Kwan Yen ... Iron Robe Yim (as Yee Kwan Yan)
Mark King ... British general
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bruce Fontaine ... Policeman
Shun Lau ... Naval Commander
Kien Shih ... Old man who gives advise (Cameo)
Yuan-fa Tsao
Chien-Po Tsen
Chi Yeung Wong ... Commander Man
Ma Wu ... Old Man

Simon Yam
Cheung-Yan Yuen
Kam-Fai Yuen ... Kai
Shun-Yee Yuen ... Honorable Manchu Soldier
Tony Yuen (as Yuen Kam Fai)
Anthony Carpio ... Thug (uncredited)

Mike Leeder ... Western Restaurant Guest (uncredited)
Create a character page for: ?

Directed by
Hark Tsui 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Yiu Ming Leung 
Elsa Tang  (as Pik-yin Tang)
Hark Tsui 
Gai Chi Yuen  (as Kai-Chi Yun)

Produced by
Hark Tsui .... producer
 
Original Music by
Romeo Díaz 
James Wong 
 
Cinematography by
Tung-Chuen Chan 
Wilson Chan 
David Chung 
Ardy Lam  (as Kwok Wah Lam)
Arthur Wong 
Bill Wong  (as Chung Biu Wong)
 
Film Editing by
Marco Mak 
 
Costume Design by
Bruce Yu 
 
Makeup Department
Siu-Mui Chau .... hair stylist
Ka-Pik Lai .... makeup artist
Yun-Ling Man .... makeup artist
Man-hua Pan .... makeup artist
Yuk-Mui Wan .... hair stylist
 
Production Management
Lloyd Chao .... post-production supervisor (international version)
Chi-Wai Cheung .... production manager
Julia Chu .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Polly Kam .... assistant director
Hoi-wah Kong .... assistant director
Kai Keung Lai .... assistant director
Bo-San Lo .... assistant director
 
Stunts
Marcus Fox .... stunt performer
Chia Yung Liu .... action coordinator
Chia Yung Liu .... stunt coordinator: fire sequences and body burns
Xin Xin Xiong .... stunt double: Jet Li
Cheung-Yan Yuen .... action coordinator
Woo-ping Yuen .... action coordinator
Chia Yung Liu .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Siu-Kwan Chan .... assistant camera
Kai-erh Chen .... lighting technician
Man Po Cheung .... assistant camera
Kei Sheung Chow .... assistant camera
Lam Chow .... lighting technician
Wai-Kuen Chow .... lighting technician
Yun-Chuen Geung .... still photographer
Perry Ho .... focus puller
Man-Ching Ng .... lighting technician
Jun-Fai Tsang .... lighting technician
Si-Chan Yeung .... assistant camera
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Hau-Jeun Wong .... costume supervisor
Hau-Yung Wong .... costume supervisor
 
Other crew
Yeung-Wah Kam .... production planner
Chia Yung Liu .... martial arts choreographer
Woo-ping Yuen .... martial arts choreographer
 

Production CompaniesDistributors
Create a character page for: ?

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Wong Fei Hung" - Hong Kong (original title)
See more »
MPAA:
Rated R for violence
Runtime:
134 min | Germany:95 min (cut version) | USA:99 min (cut version)
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Australia:MA (cable rating) | Australia:M (original rating) | Brazil:12 | Finland:K-16 | France:U | Germany:18 (original rating) | Germany:16 (re-rating) (2010) | Hong Kong:IIB | Ireland:15 | Netherlands:12 (DVD/VHS release) (2001) | Singapore:PG | South Korea:15 | UK:15 | USA:R

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Jet Li's voice is dubbed in post-production because he is not a Cantonese speaker. In fact, he spoke in Mandarin entirely during filming.See more »
Goofs:
Revealing mistakes: When Wong Fei-Hung jumps off the tea-house, while kicking the Shaho gang leader, it is quite clearly another actor (Xiong Xin Xin).See more »
Quotes:
Yim:No matter how good our kung-fu is, it will never defeat guns.See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

What are the differences between the old US-version and the uncut version?
See more »
7 out of 7 people found the following review useful.
Martial Arts Masterpiece, 30 March 2006
Author: bs3dc from United Kingdom

Once Upon a Time in China is quite simply one of the best films ever to come out of Hong Kong from almost every perspective.

Jet Li stars in the role he was born to play (in my opinion), real-life martial arts master, doctor and commander of the local militia, Wong Fei-Hung. Despite not even being able to speak Cantonese his acting in this just using facial expression, and body language is highly impressive, conveying a man of great dignity and command above the real age of Jet Li, answering the critics who considered him too young for the role. It must have been a difficult role for him to take on, with Kwan Tak-Hing (played Wong Fei Hung in around 100 films) and Jackie Chan (Drunken Master I and II) being his predecessors.

The story is very complex - possibly a little too complex - and transcends a good many martial arts films whose plots can easily be summed up in a single sentence. Wong Fei-Hung has to deal with American slavers, local gangs, a renegade martial arts master and even his own wayward (but well-intentioned students). On top of this he has to contend with his growing affection for Aunt Yee (Rosamund Kwan) which is important as it is set around the end of the 19th century when there were great social changes in China. This is typified with his relationship with his aunt who is not related to him by blood, but with whom it would be taboo to marry. The fact that this is a series of films allows the relationship to develop also sets it apart from many Hong Kong films where any romances are usually very fast-moving and unrealistic.

The rest of the cast is extremely good, slightly more so than later episodes. The wonderfully athletic Yuen Biao plays Leung Foon, a trainee actor who wants to learn kung fu to protect himself - it is a shame he allegedly fell out with director Tsui Hark over screen time as his replacement in subsequent films is comic but has not got the martial arts skills. Kent Cheng is perfect for the role of the larger-than-life Lam Sai-Wing who is Wong Fei Hung's head student. His other students are played with vigour by Jacky Cheung and Yuen Kam-Fai.

The villains are suitably colourful, and the lead bad guy played by Yam Sai-Kun is interesting because he is not as two-dimensional as he could have been and is almost a double for Wong Fei-Hung and what he could have become had he gone down the wrong path.

The action is superb which is unsurprising considering it is choreographed by Yuen Woo-Ping, though critics will still fault the wire-work and use of doubles. The final showdown is a masterpiece of editing as Jet Li was injured and had to be doubled for many of the shots that weren't above the waist, but his fist techniques make up for this. The film has a long running time for a martial arts flick so for once there is plenty of time for story and action.

An honourable mention has to go the music written by James Wong, as it is one of the greatest and most memorable of all martial arts theme music.

In short they don't come much better than this. People who enjoyed Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon would probably love this and it should also be seen by anyone who has seen Cradle 2 the Grave and thinks Jet Li can't act. The first 2 sequels for this are also warmly recommended.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (61 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Once Upon a Time in China (1991)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Authenticity Clamberto
strong racist overtones apchar
Aunt 13??? repeater123
5 best fight scenes ever fryman3
Playing in NYC next month VincentGecko
Haircut uma_isthebride
See more »

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Action section IMDb Hong Kong section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.