HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Dreambuilders
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Scoob!
Earwig
Offseason
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Buffaloed
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Abominable
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Battle Wizard drink the snake blood, punch the gorilla, save the girl
Year: 1977
Director: Pao Hsueh-li
Stars: Danny Lee, Tanny Tien Ni, Lin Chen-chi, Yuen Cheung-yan, Norman Tsui Siu-keung, Ha Ping
Genre: Martial Arts, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Lesson One in how to kick off a cult movie: dive straight into sex and violence. Wong Po-lin catches his wife in bed with Prince Tuan Zhengchun, notorious horn-dog and (unfortunately for Wong) master of the Yi Yang Finger. He shoots an energy beam from his fingers that chops Wong’s legs off. Wong retreats to his candy-coloured lair at the earth’s core (living next door to Blofeld, perhaps?) and plots revenge. Twenty years later, he targets the prince’s son, Tuan Yu (Danny Lee), a timid scholar with no knowledge of kung fu. While wandering the countryside, Tuan Yu meets happy-go-lucky, snake loving maiden, Zhong Ling-ehr (Lin Chen-chi) and the pair fall afoul of Wong’s henchmen, including a super-fast, killer hunchback with fangs, a giant claw and a steel head. More than cute, Ling-ehr proves super-cool and throws snakes as weapons that burrow through victims and explode their skulls! When things get really bad, she sends Tuan Yu to seek out mystical swordswoman Mu Wanqing (Tanny Tien Ni), who practices the Yi Yang finger and unfortunately, is known for killing every man she meets. However, she spares Tuan Yu’s life after he warns her of a bandit attack and he reciprocates when she is poisoned by a demon. Attacked by a magic snake, Tuan Yu kills the giant reptile by biting its throat. Swallowing the creature’s blood transforms him into a kung fu dynamo, but his plans to marry Wanqing are scuppered when Prince Tuan Zhengchun reveals who her father is. To make matters worse, Wong Po-lin arrives with his brand-new, extendable, metal chicken legs; captures Tuan Yu and Wanqing and sets in motion his ultimate plan: to feed them to his amazing, kung fu fighting ape!!

How can you not love a Shaw Bros. kung fu movie this crazy? Nowadays, Danny Lee is best known for pairing opposite Chow Yun-fat in John Woo’s The Killer (1989) and Ringo Lam’s City on Fire (1987), or for directing deeply unpleasant crime-horror flicks like The Untold Story (1993). But, once upon a time, Lee headlined some of the freakiest Hong Kong movies ever made: Oily Maniac (1976), Bruce Lee & I (1975), The Mighty Peking Man (1977) - what was the guy on? Battle Wizard is an immensely enjoyable period fantasy, loosely based on a classic novel, “Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils”. Condensed into a scant hour and twelve minutes, it probably doesn’t do justice to the 2000 page epic, later filmed as Dragon Chronicles: The Maidens of Heavenly Mountain (1994), a lavish adaptation starring Brigitte Lin and Gong Li.

Ice-maiden Tanny Tien Ni is a little too remote to fully engage as Wanqing. Stealing the show is Lin Chen-chi as plucky snake-slinger, Ling-ehr. Always smiling, she’s the closest thing to a kooky hippie chick the martial arts genre has to offer. The appealing actress tangled with serpents before in Shaw Bros.’ fairytale fantasy The Snake Prince (1976), but really stood out as a terrifying anti-heroine in Tsui Hark’s Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind (1980). Fast paced, colourful and inventive (I haven’t mentioned Wanqing’s dinosaur bone that shoots laser beams or the magic frog that when swallowed renders someone invincible), this kung fu quickie utilizes props, optical and sound effects left over from Shaw’s earlier Super Infra-Man (1975), starring - you guessed it - Danny Lee.
Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 5993 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: