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"The movie business is macabre. Grotesque.
It is a combination of a football game
and a brothel."
-- Federico Fellini
Dec 092015
 


Four Hong Kong martial arts films from Golden Harvest studios are now presented for the first time in 16×9 widescreen DVD with their original language intact with English captions. From the 70s through the 90s Golden Harvest introduced stars like Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung and Jet Li to the world. These initial four titles have been rarely seen on home video in the US, and these few are just the beginning!

pedicab-driverPEDICAB DRIVER (1989) Rascally pedicab driver Lo Tung yearns for the lovely Ping, but she is also desired by a dangerous gang boss who is not above murder to get what he wants. When two of his friends are killed by the gangster’s men, Lo must use his incredible fighting talent to avenge them. Over the course of a 40-year-long career, Sammo Hung has been the creative force behind many of Hong Kong cinema’s most incredible action sequences, and Pedicab Driver features some of the director/star’s most spectacular acrobatics and choreography, including a show-stopping stick fight with Shaw Brothers master Lau Kar-Leung and an incredible final duel against World Kickboxing Association champion Billy Chow. One of the most requested Hong Kong films, Pedicab Driver finally arrives on DVD for the first time anywhere and offers Hung’s finest combination of martial arts, humor and drama.

BLADE OF FURY (1993) Near the end of the 19th century, the Japanese occupation of Taiwan is resisted by a group of Chinese patriots known as the Black Flag Troop. Despite their best efforts, the warriors are massacred and only their leader, Wang Wu, is left alive. After several years in seclusion, Wang is inspired to continue the fight to reform China, and he establishes his own martial arts school before going head-to-head with corrupt local officials whose machinations have compromised the country. Beloved martial arts star Sammo Hung directs, choreographs and plays a supporting role in this look at the heroics of real-life Qing Dynasty master “Big Blade” Wang Wu. The Kung Fu and swordplay are high-flying and furiously energetic, and are performed by a capable cast of genre veterans led by distinguished Shaw Brothers leading man Ti Lung and Taiwanese martial arts stars Cynthia Khan and Collin Chou (The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions).

BIG BULLET (1996) After his short-fuse temper gets him into trouble once too often, Sgt. Bill Chu finds himself demoted to the Emergency Unit squad of beat cops, where he must command a mismatched group of subordinates. However, Chu doesn’t let his team’s perceived limitations prevent him from taking them into direct combat with psychotic criminals who have pulled a multi-million dollar robbery at Interpol headquarters. Big Bullet is filled with the sort of spectacular gunplay, crisply staged chase sequences and hair-raising suspense that brought the former British colony’s cinema international attention. Amidst all of the well-choreographed and fast-paced chaos, it also displays a human center, thanks to a fine cast headlined by revered character actor Lau Ching-Wan, who shines as the hard-nosed, determined hero who won’t let the system or a pair of brazen opponents stop him from putting an end to the mayhem.

DOWNTOWN TORPEDOES (1997) Blackmailed by the Hong Kong government into stealing currency printing plates from the headquarters of MI5, members of ATM (Available Tactical Mercenaries) use their industrial espionage skills to successfully pull off the job. An act of treachery, however, leaves one of their number dead, prompting the remaining ATM associates to try to retrieve the plates to avenge their friend’s murder and clear their names. Featuring picturesque location work in Budapest, this fast-paced, exciting variation on the Mission: Impossible high-tech adventure formula helped establish a new kind of internationally oriented Hong Kong action cinema. Highlighted by stirring chases, exhilarating hand-to-hand combat and slick caper sequences (which earned a Hong Kong Film Award for action choreographer Stephen Tung), Downtown Torpedoes also showcases charismatic performances from several of the period’s rising stars, including Jordan Chan (He’s a Woman, She’s a Man), Charlie Yeung (Love in the Time of Twilight) and Theresa Lee (Big Bullet).

 
NOTE: These DVDs are Manufactured on Demand (MOD); to order, fans must visit The Warner Archive Collection, WB Shop.com, Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

 Posted by on December 9, 2015  Add comments

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