ejL (1988)
Yellow River Fighter


Reviewed by: Gaijin84
Date: 02/07/2019
Summary: Weapon work on a different level...

Yellow River Fighter is a mainland film that stars Yu Cheng-Hui, best known for his role in the Jet Li classic Kids from Shaolin. In this film he plays Ma Yi, a wandering swordsman bent on avenging the death of his daughter, who happens to save the life of a warlord and is taken in to be one of his main fighters. Unfortunately for Yi, all the powerful leaders vying for control of the country are willing to do anything to gain his services, even if it means failure to do so leads to Yi’s death. Not able trust anyone, eventually Yi grows tired of the constant battles and tries to leave and lead a life of solitude. Things are never that easy though.

Yellow River Fighter has almost the same cast as Kids from Shaolin, minus Jet Li of course. As can be expected from Mainland China productions, the kung fu and swordplay is absolutely amazing. Yu Cheng-Hui is one of a handful of actors whose sword skills are beyond anything you’ll see in other films, and the choreography matches the ability. All of the fight scenes are fast and hair-raising, with weapons barely missing their targets and copious amounts of blood being shed. The plot on the other hand is unusually dark and depressing. Even the main characters are never safe from being dispatched in a gruesome way. In any case, recommended for the exquisite weapon work even if the story will leave you in the dumps.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: pjshimmer
Date: 10/09/2001

This mainland production features the same director and much of the cast from Jet Li's Shaolin Temple 1 & 2. The lead here is in fact the villain from Shaolin Temple. I found him trenmemdously better as the good guy though. I will say this movie is flawed to a pretty far extent, but the martial arts is typical of mainland China choreographers, who are for the most part more authentic than, say, Yuen Woo Ping, but are not as stylish. The plot once again does not take into consideration realism, so be warned.

[7/10]


Reviewed by: Cissi
Date: 06/26/2001
Summary: 7/10-Go fight

KILL!! DIE!!

Probably the most repeated words in the film :)

Lots of slaughter in a variety of places, including beside the raging Yellow River, in front of ice-covered cliffs and in the desert. And now that you've mentioned it, there certainly are similarities between it and a Western.

Which partly explains its old-fashioness. This is a film with its heart in the 70s, with updated 80s fighting- you have a swordsman who is seeking revenge, and the amount of extras flying through the air and getting killed rivals The Beach Of The War Gods. Still, most of it is pretty fun to watch, and Yue Sing Wai is excellent at drunken sword-fighting. Just pretend you're watching a 70s film :)


Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 03/10/2000
Summary: Warmly recommended

One description jumps out - Eastern Western. Panoramic shots of deserts, guys fighting on galloping horses, smouldering stares, the lead character doing a creditable job at looking like Clint Eastwood, and the hero even rides off into the sunset at the end !
The filming is colourful and the scenery is stunning. Apart from said deserts, there are fight scenes in ice and snow, surging deep rivers and palaces.
There is swordfighting aplenty, and many more dead bodies lying and hanging around (some even arroved to walls) than you'll find even in a proper spaghetti western.
There's even a fair chunk of humour, especially the antics of the hero's pal.
Not quite up to the high standard of Deadend Of Beseigers (made with some of the same people), but worth watching.

Reviewer Score: 8