A flying guillotine, if by any other name, does the same nasty job
It opens with Lo Lieh demonstrating his fabulous weapons that work like boomerangs. He's a bad guy working for an evil lord and he follows orders. The Lord has a boil on his back. He summons the royal physician and is told he needs an herb and who to get it from. He returns this kindness by ordering Lo to kill him so we see the boomerangs doing a decapitation. These weapons are actually better than and a tad more realistic than the original flying guillotine.
This movie has a curious plot structure in that there is no hint of a good guy for at least the first 20 minutes. Two possible plots then emerge. One is that another character could rise up to be the hero by defeating Lo Lieh. The other is the coming of age plot in which Lo Lieh would come to see the error of his ways and develop into a good guy. Instead, it's more of a group effort to stop Lo Lieh in the final fight.
Shaw Brothers made some big additions to their outdoor standing sets. There is a long and large pink wall. The old bridge is still there just in the background. It remains in a simpler version and this could be the time it appears at all. Other new areas include the cottage below the big bridge, the old temple area, and the diagonal walkway over the pond outside the big house.
Shaw Brothers uses their strengths in movie making - the cast, the action, the sets, and the costumes - to crank out an above average movie for the year and genre.
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