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Paper Dragons (1996)

R | | Drama
A small-time hood, left for dead after double-crossing drug dealers, is taken in by a monastery and taught the art of kung fu.

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, (as Adlofo Swaya) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Master Chang
...
Master Tsai
Adolfo Swaya ...
Paul Marcos
...
Lee Hongpo
...
Greg
Frank Van Keeken ...
Vincent
...
Jack
...
Kate
...
Sammy
...
Wu
Benjamin Lum ...
Cook
Allen James ...
Liu
...
Foreman
Arsenio 'Sonny' Trinidad ...
Chi
Gerald Jann ...
Butcher
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Storyline

A small-time hood, left for dead after double-crossing drug dealers, is taken in by a monastery and taught the art of kung fu.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language, drug content and some sexuality
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Did You Know?

Quotes

[first lines]
Jack: It'll work, man - we can do it.
Paul Marcos: We rip off gangster player we'll have half of China after us.
Jack: We'll be in and out of there before they even know what hit 'em. They won't know it's us. We can do it.
Paul Marcos: Too dangerous.
Jack: It's not too dangerous. I know exactly - I know when the drop takes place. We can do it. It's a piece of cake.
Kate: He's right - why should be buy it when we can just take it?
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User Reviews

 
low budget, high aspiration
20 April 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A Russian immigrant, Paul Marcos, becomes a drug dealer to survive. After a heist he joins goes bad, he recovers from his wounds at a Buddhist Temple. There he is taught Mantis style martial arts. But the abbots at the monastery have a hidden agenda, one which forces Marcos into confrontation with the mob that ruined the heist....

Here's the bad news - this is not an action movie.

It is a drama about one young man's spiritual journey through a world of corruption. Not a martial arts film but a film about martial arts, and how rigorous self-discipline and strict ethics comprise what kung fu is really all about.

Here's the good news - despite a crash budget, Adolfo Swaya turns in a remarkably good film. Strong script, surprisingly effective visuals, excellent editing, rock solid acting despite some stereotyping, good sound quality for a cheapie independent. And that's is what this is, really - an independent film (a personal film, very carefully crafted), not a 'kung fu' film. But I found it easy to watch and with a lesson to learn. Rewards the patient viewer who can release genre expectations and enjoy it for what it is


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