The Bloody Fight (1972)
Reviewed by: Gaijin84 on 2008-02-18
Summary: Awfully choreographed with few highlights
Pretty standard kung fu plot here, as those dastardly Japanese are at it again. Chen Chang (Pai Ying) is traveling around China with a couple of henchmen (Chen Kuan-Tai and Eddy Ko Hung) in search of a master that can challenge him to a good fight. Using a local gangster that wants a bit of revenge, they find Ching, the teacher at a local school. When Chang kills him in a death match, his daughter (Ingrid Hu) escapes to find her Uncle Shi (Goo Man-Chung) and let him know what happened. Chang eventually comes across Shi as well, and nearly kills him in a similar deathmatch. Shi had a few Thai martial arts students and decides that they must combine Thai kickboxing and kung fu in order to defeat the Chang. Throw in threturn of a former kung fu whiz student that has taken to the bottle, and they have a team that can finally take it to the Japanese.

Unfortunately, this somewhat interesting plot is not given the justice it deserves. The fights are horribly choreographed and don't give any indication that the participants know a single bit of kung fu. The inclusion of Ingrid Hu and Lau Lan-Ying does nothing to help the situation, as they look more lost than everyone else. There are only two saving graces to this film. One is the character of the wayward prodigal student Chi Shi Hau played by Tang Ching. Tang is quite a good actor in this role and you can sense his internal conflict of wanting to help his old school and the shame of revealing what he has become since he was expelled. Although his real-life kung fu skills are horrendous, his acting makes up for that issue. The second and final bright point is the fight that eliminates the two henchmen. I'm not sure if a different martial arts director took the helm for that scene, but it is fast, exciting, and incredibly brutal. The "finishing moves" that are exacted on Chan Kuan-tai and Eddy Ko are completely over the top in terms of viciousness and cruelty. Pai Ying is taken out in a similar fashion, but the fight that leads to that execution is sloppy in comparison. Overall, the film cannot be recommended.

3/10
Reviewer Score: 3