Kung Fu (1972–1975)
16 user 2 critic
After avenging the death of his teacher, a Shaolin monk flees China to the American West and helps people while being pursued by bounty hunters.


Jerry Thorpe


Ed Spielman (teleplay), Howard Friedlander (teleplay) | 1 more credit »

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Episode complete credited cast:
David Carradine ... Caine
Barry Sullivan ... Dillon
Albert Salmi ... Raif
Wayne Maunder ... McKay
Benson Fong ... Han Fei
Richard Loo ... Master Sun
Keye Luke ... Master Po
Philip Ahn ... Master Kan
Victor Sen Yung ... Chuen
Robert Ito ... Fong
James Hong ... Hsiang
Radames Pera ... Young Caine
Roy Jenson ... Fuller
John Leoning John Leoning ... Master Teh
David Chow David Chow ... Little Monk


From the tiger, he learns tenacity and power. From the white crane, gracefulness. And the dragon teaches him to ride the wind. It could take a lifetime to master just one of the many Kung Fu disciplines. But young Kwai Chang Caine knows them all. He was educated in a Shaolin monastery around 1800 by the monks. Against all forms of violence he face his ultimate challenge when his preferred master was killed by the hands of the imperial forces. After avenging the death of his teacher, as a Shaolin monk, he flees China to the American West and helps people defending the weak and fighting against the evil while being pursued by Chinese bounty hunters. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

22 February 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Warrior See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Richard Loo here plays Shaolin Master Sun, a character he would reprise in two episodes, Kung Fu: Blood Brother (1973) during the first season, and Kung Fu: Besieged: Cannon at the Gates (1974) during the third. He would also feature in three other entries, playing three different characters: Kung Fu: The Tong (1973), Kung Fu: Arrogant Dragon (1974) and Kung Fu: The Devil's Champion (1974). See more »


In a scene where Chinese laborers are pounding railroad spikes, a worker misses hitting his spike. See more »


Master Kan: Quickly as you can, snatch the pebble from my hand.
[Young Caine tries to do so and fails]
Master Kan: When you can take the pebble from my hand, it will be time for you to leave.
See more »


Referenced in The Tao of Caine: Production and Beyond (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Probably the best TV movie ever
7 June 2005 | by Dire_StraitsSee all my reviews

This TV movie, which played as a pilot for the series, Kung Fu, is the best TV movie I've ever seen. "Brian's Song" would be a close second.

The movie - and the series - is as innovative (using flashbacks, slow-motion, focusing fade-ins, and a lot of Eastern quotes that make a great deal of sense) as any you will find.

And this was a Western! There was nothing like it before and there's been nothing like it since. KUNG FU is one of a kind.

The TV series was excellent as well. The various directors all used the same interesting techniques as the pilot film to achieve almost a dream-like effect of the West during the early part of the 20th century.

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