Classic Martial Arts Movies

by mrs-jenniferjohnson | created - 06 May 2016 | updated - 2 months ago | Public
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1. Come Drink with Me (1966)

Not Rated | 95 min | Action, Crime

A group of bandits kidnaps the governor's son and demands their imprisoned leader to be set free in exchange.

Director: King Hu | Stars: Pei-Pei Cheng, Hua Yueh, Chih-Ching Yang, Hung Lieh Chen

Votes: 3,351

2. Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky (1991)

R | 91 min | Action, Comedy, Thriller

A young man with superhuman strength is incarcerated at a prison run by corrupt officials and seeks to use his martial arts to clean up the system.

Director: Ngai Choi Lam | Stars: Siu-Wong Fan, Mei Sheng Fan, Ka-Kui Ho, Yukari Ôshima

Votes: 11,706

3. The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978)

R | 115 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

A man studies kung fu at the Shaolin Temple to fight back against the oppressive Manchu government.

Director: Chia-Liang Liu | Stars: Chia-Hui Liu, Lieh Lo, Chia Yung Liu, Norman Chu

Votes: 13,303

4. Return to the 36th Chamber (1980)

R | 99 min | Action, Comedy

The workers of a dye factory have their pay cut by 20% when the factory owner brings in some Manchu thugs to try and increase production. Desperate to reclaim their full wages, the workers ... See full summary »

Director: Chia-Liang Liu | Stars: Chia-Hui Liu, Lung Wei Wang, Hou Hsiao, Lun Hua

Votes: 2,885

5. Lady Snowblood (1973)

Not Rated | 97 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

A young girl is born and raised to be an instrument of revenge.

Director: Toshiya Fujita | Stars: Meiko Kaji, Toshio Kurosawa, Masaaki Daimon, Miyoko Akaza

Votes: 10,945

6. Shogun Assassin (1980)

R | 85 min | Action, Adventure

When the wife of the Shogun's Decapitator is murdered and he is ordered to commit suicide by the paranoid Shogun, he and his four-year-old son escape and become assassins for hire, embarking on a journey of blood and violent death.

Directors: Robert Houston, Kenji Misumi | Stars: Tomisaburô Wakayama, Kayo Matsuo, Minoru Ôki, Shôgen Nitta

Votes: 9,108

7. Enter the Dragon (1973)

R | 102 min | Action, Crime, Drama

83 Metascore

A martial artist agrees to spy on a reclusive crime lord using his invitation to a tournament there as cover.

Director: Robert Clouse | Stars: Bruce Lee, John Saxon, Jim Kelly, Ahna Capri

Votes: 90,111 | Gross: $25.00M

8. Fist of Fury (1972)

R | 107 min | Action, Drama, Romance

68 Metascore

A young man seeks vengence for the death of his teacher.

Director: Wei Lo | Stars: Bruce Lee, Nora Miao, James Tien, Maria Yi

Votes: 23,484

9. The Big Boss (1971)

R | 99 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A young man sworn to an oath of non-violence works with his cousins in an ice factory where they mysteriously begin to disappear.

Directors: Wei Lo, Chia-Hsiang Wu | Stars: Bruce Lee, Maria Yi, James Tien, Marilyn Bautista

Votes: 22,473

10. Throne of Blood (1957)

Not Rated | 110 min | Drama, History

A war-hardened general, egged on by his ambitious wife, works to fulfill a prophecy that he would become lord of Spider's Web Castle.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Minoru Chiaki, Isuzu Yamada, Takashi Shimura

Votes: 40,717

11. Yojimbo (1961)

Not Rated | 110 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

A crafty ronin comes to a town divided by two criminal gangs and decides to play them against each other to free the town.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Eijirô Tôno, Tatsuya Nakadai, Yôko Tsukasa

Votes: 100,677

12. Ran (1985)

R | 162 min | Action, Drama

96 Metascore

In Medieval Japan, an elderly warlord retires, handing over his empire to his three sons. However, he vastly underestimates how the new-found power will corrupt them and cause them to turn on each other...and him.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Terao, Jinpachi Nezu, Daisuke Ryû

Votes: 101,691 | Gross: $3.52M

13. Seven Samurai (1954)

Not Rated | 207 min | Adventure, Drama

98 Metascore

A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Keiko Tsushima, Yukiko Shimazaki

Votes: 290,523 | Gross: $0.27M

14. Kagemusha (1980)

PG | 162 min | Drama, History, War

84 Metascore

A petty thief with an utter resemblance to a samurai warlord is hired as the lord's double. When the warlord later dies the thief is forced to take up arms in his place.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Ken'ichi Hagiwara, Jinpachi Nezu

Votes: 29,183

15. Fist of Legend (1994)

R | 103 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

In 1937, a Chinese martial artist returns to Shanghai to find his teacher dead and his school harassed by the Japanese.

Director: Gordon Chan | Stars: Jet Li, Shinobu Nakayama, Siu-Ho Chin, Billy Chow

Votes: 21,308

16. Once Upon a Time in China (1991)

R | 134 min | Action, Adventure, Biography

Late 1800s Foshan, Guangdong: Wong Fei Hung/Jet Li trains men in martial arts to help defend against foreign powers already holding Hong Kong and Macau. He looks after cute 13th Aunt, who's just returned from England. Lots of fight scenes.

Director: Hark Tsui | Stars: Jet Li, Rosamund Kwan, Biao Yuen, Jacky Cheung

Votes: 16,211

17. The New Legend of Shaolin (1994)

R | 95 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

A young father and his infant son are beset by forces of evil and corruption. They wander China, upholding their sense of honor and protecting the weak. When they are forced into combat, ... See full summary »

Directors: Jing Wong, Corey Yuen | Stars: Jet Li, Chingmy Yau, Deannie Ip, Miu Tse

Votes: 5,038

18. The One-Armed Swordsman (1967)

R | 111 min | Action, Drama

A noble swordsman, whose arm had been chopped off, returns to his former teacher to defend him from a villainous gang of rival swordsmen.

Director: Cheh Chang | Stars: Jimmy Wang Yu, Chiao Chiao, Chung-Hsin Huang, Yin-Tze Pan

Votes: 2,602

19. Return of the One-Armed Swordsman (1969)

R | 101 min | Action, Adventure

After defeating The Long-Armed Devil and his armies, our nubbed hero has been living in retirement as a farmer, but circumstances causes him to come out of retirement and take on The Eight ... See full summary »

Director: Cheh Chang | Stars: Jimmy Wang Yu, Chiao Chiao, Chia Essie Lin, Feng Tien

Votes: 1,037

20. The Streetfighter's Last Revenge (1974)

R | 83 min | Action, Crime, Drama

Terry Sugury is hired to recover one of two tapes containing a formula for making heroin for a price of 200 dollars a pound. But he gets double crossed. So he wants the tape back.

Director: Shigehiro Ozawa | Stars: Shin'ichi Chiba, Reiko Ike, Kôji Wada, Tatsuo Endô

Votes: 1,042

21. Legend of Eight Samurai (1983)

133 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy

Princess Shizu's family is wiped out by an family of undead seeking revenge. The eight samurai can save her, but who and where are they?

Director: Kinji Fukasaku | Stars: Hiroko Yakushimaru, Hiroyuki Sanada, Shin'ichi Chiba, Etsuko Shihomi

Votes: 957

22. Fang Shi Yu (1972)

R | 90 min | Action, Drama

A gifted but proud young martial arts student injures and kills an opponent. In retaliation , his father is killed. The young student vows revenge and begins to prepare for his epic face-off.

Director: Yang Ming Tsai | Stars: Fei Meng, Lin Lin Li, Yasuaki Kurata, Hung Pai

Votes: 256

23. Ninja bugeicho momochi sandayu (1980)

R | 117 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

In the middle of the 16th century, Hideyoshi, a power hungry warlord sets out to destroy the Momochi clan. He sends his war commander in search of the clan's hidden gold only to find that ... See full summary »

Director: Norifumi Suzuki | Stars: Shin'ichi Chiba, Hiroyuki Sanada, Etsuko Shihomi, Yuki Ninagawa

Votes: 621

24. Game of Death (1978)

R | 100 min | Action, Crime, Drama

36 Metascore

A martial arts movie star must fake his death to find the people who are trying to kill him.

Directors: Robert Clouse, Bruce Lee | Stars: Bruce Lee, Gig Young, Dean Jagger, Hugh O'Brian

Votes: 15,532 | Gross: $10.00M

25. Small Tiger (1973)

Not Rated | 102 min | Action, Drama

Young Tiger, a martial artist in modern-day Hong Kong, fights a braggart in a martial-arts studio and defeats him. He later witnesses the braggart getting beaten up by a gang of thugs. ... See full summary »

Director: Wu Ma | Stars: Fei Meng, Lin Lin Li, Chi Lin, Stanley Sui-Fan Fung

Votes: 234

26. Cai yang nu bang zhu (1980)

Not Rated | 86 min | Action, Drama

Two Ming patriots spend their days helping the weak and rescuing damsels in distress. This alum gets them in trouble, though, as they are captured and then volunteered to go after the ... See full summary »

Director: Chi Lo | Stars: Fei Meng, Nancy Yen, Chung Chien Li, Sha-Li Chen

Votes: 150

27. Dragon Inn (1967)

Not Rated | 111 min | Action, Adventure

97 Metascore

When the children of an executed General are pursued in 1457 China, some heroic martial arts swordsmen intervene.

Director: King Hu | Stars: Polly Ling-Feng Shang-Kuan, Chun Shih, Ying Bai, Feng Hsu

Votes: 1,900

28. A.K. (1985)

71 min | Documentary, Biography, History

A documentary that shows the production of Ran and discusses the film techniques of Kurosawa himself.

Director: Chris Marker | Stars: Shigehiko Hasumi, Chris Marker, Akira Kurosawa, Tatsuya Nakadai

Votes: 824

29. Duel to the Death (1983)

R | 86 min | Action, Drama

The best sword master from China vs the best sword master from Japan. Who will win?

Director: Siu-Tung Ching | Stars: Norman Chu, Damian Lau, Flora Chong-Leen, Paul Chang Chung

Votes: 1,586

30. Invincible Shaolin (1978)

R | 98 min | Action, Drama

Three North Shaolin teachers (Lu Feng, Chang Sheng, and Sun Chien) are called on by the Manchus to teach their soldiers and are urged to challenge the current South Shaolin teachers. They ... See full summary »

Director: Cheh Chang | Stars: Feng Lu, Sheng Chiang, Chien Sun, Phillip Chung-Fung Kwok

Votes: 887

31. My Young Auntie (1981)

Not Rated | 121 min | Action, Comedy

Cheng Tai-Nan (Kara Hui) is an honest and faithful servant of a dying patriarch who wants nothing more than to protect his vast wealth from his selfish, conniving nephew, Yung-Sheng. ... See full summary »

Director: Chia-Liang Liu | Stars: Chia-Liang Liu, Kara Wai, Hou Hsiao, Lung Wei Wang

Votes: 589



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