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Martial Arts of Shaolin (1986)

Nan bei Shao Lin (original title)
In ancient China, Zhi Ming trains at the legendary Northern Shaolin temple to avenge the death of his father at the hands of a nefarious magistrate.


Chia-Liang Liu


Yang-Ping Shi (screenplay), Yeung-Ping Sze
1 nomination. See more awards »




Credited cast:
Jet Li ... Zhi Ming
Jianqiang Hu Jianqiang Hu ... Chao Wei
Qiuyan Huang Qiuyan Huang ... Sima Yan
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bao Gao Bao Gao
Chunhua Ji ... Lord He's Bodyguard
Yanlin Jiang Yanlin Jiang
Huailiang Liu Huailiang Liu ... Lord He's bodyguard
Chen Ma Chen Ma
Wai-Cheung Mak ... Wei Fang (as Weichang Mai)
Qingfu Pan Qingfu Pan
Jiankui Sun Jiankui Sun ... Lord He's Bodyguard
Lai Wei Tang Lai Wei Tang ... Martial Arts performer (as Laiwei Tang)
Chunyuan Wang Chunyuan Wang
Shudan Wang Shudan Wang
Xinxin Xiong Xinxin Xiong


Jet Li weasels out of the north Shaolin temple to assassinate a despotic ruler at the ruler's extravagant public birthday celebration. Two other men from the south Shaolin temple also set out to assassinate the ruler, but all three fail and are chased all over by soldiers. Meanwhile, one of the southerners turns out to be a cross-dressed woman, who is also discovered to wear a footbell to match Jet Li's, meaning they are somehow slated for an arranged marriage. Written by Johan Wikberg

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Drama


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Was two years in the making. See more »


Follows Kids from Shaolin (1984) See more »

User Reviews

Roller coaster ride 'o whup-ass
22 October 2006 | by wandering-starSee all my reviews

This great film brings together Jet Li and titan-of-a-martial-arts-director Lau Kar-Leung (Seven Swords, Drunken Master II, among scores of others).

Jet Li plays Zhi Ming, a monk in one of the northern shaolin schools who learns that the man who killed his parents, Lord He Suo, is holding a birthday celebration. He leaves the monastery without permission on a quest for vengeance. During the assassination attempt he joins up with Sima Yan and Chao Wei, also wronged by He Suo and out for revenge.

This film is not only chock full of great fights superbly choreographed, but also has plentiful demonstrations of kung fu as the beautiful martial art form that it is. The traditional Chinese dragon dance and drumming at He Suo's birthday celebration is also captivating.

Another strength is the unparalleled scenes for some of these fights - from the Great Wall, to ancient temples, to green valleys surrounded by breathtaking mountainous panoramas. This movie makes you want to travel to China.

Definitely recommended for fans of the genre.

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Hong Kong | China



Release Date:

1 February 1986 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

Martial Arts of Shaolin See more »


Box Office


HKD15,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shaw Brothers See more »
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Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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