The Crazy Instructor (1974)
Reviewed by: Gaijin84 on 2006-06-09
Summary: I saved you an hour and a half of your life...
Ho Tung (James Yi Lui) is a man pretending to be a master of martial arts while running a school for young kids. After being challenged by a local fighter and barely escaping through pure luck, Ho leaves his martial arts school and wanders the countryside. He soon gets involved with a thief (Michael Lai Siu-Tin) and their scam lands them in a local town who has gone crazy looking for gold in the surrounding hills. Ho manages to stumble onto the real cache of gold and becomes a target soon thereafter. Seeing Ho is an utter buffoon, the mayor (Wong San) and his advisor (Ngai Ping-Ngo) make him the town's security chief, hoping they'll gain his confidence and lead them to the gold. Soon everyone is after Ho and the thief, using everything from sex to murder in order to get the riches hidden in the hills.

Pretty much a throw-away movie, The Crazy Instructor brings nothing to the table in terms of new ideas or inspired comedy. James Yi plays an incredibly annoying character who you struggle to find any sympathy for. The plot seems like one that would be perfectly in tune with a 1970's Woody Allen comedy, but James Yi is not nebbish enough to make the title character work. His simple dumb luck is all that gets him through, even though he seems perfectly capable of defending himself. The supporting characters do an acceptable job but are not enough to save the film. There is also a very odd scene in the beginning in which Yi provokes several animals (including a crane, anaconda and several cobras) into attacking him. He then procedes to bite the head off a live lizard and chew it contemplatively. Not for the squeamish. The only highlights are a fight between Lee Ka-Ting and Wong Ching and (shame on me) several impressive nude scenes with Leung Laan-Si. I know that is never a reason to watch a movie, but I'm grasping at straws here for any positives in this mess.
Reviewer Score: 2