Hap Ki Do (1972)
Reviewed by: Gaijin84 on 2008-03-10
Summary: Classic martial arts action!
After training in Korean martial art Hapkido for 5 years, three siblings return to China to open their own school. However, with the Japanese occupying Korea, the Japanese run Black Bear school in their town objects to the opening and constantly harasses them. Even though their master (real life Hapkido co-founder Ji Han-Jae) constantly preaches forbearance, there is only so much the three can take, and eventual physical attacks from the Japanese drives them to finally retaliate.
The film is an absolute classic, with incredible action direction from Sammo Hung and top-notch fighting from Angela Mao, Carter Wong and Sammo. Authentic Hapkido and lightning fast choreography makes this one of the best 70s kung fu films ever made. Hap Ki Do master Ji Han-Jae graces the start of the film, along with one of his main pupils, Whang In-Shik, who has an outstanding final fight with the head of the Japanese school, Yamane Teruo. The plot is a little similar to Fist of Fury, and some of the dojo fight camera angles seems to be pulled directly from that Bruce Lee classic. Hapkido is still fantastic in its own right, but sometimes the tone goes a little over the top in its portrayal of Japanese dastardliness, but this seems almost par for the course for a lot of martial arts films from the 70s. Very cool to see three of the "Little Fortunes": Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao and Yuen Wah as Japanese students as well! Highly recommended.

9/10
Reviewer Score: 9