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(1970)
Vengeance!


Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 04/10/2016

This was on TV in the US recently. It's a weird departure for director Chang and his crew of actors. Some of the action direction seems slightly off, or something. Wang Ping making goo-goo eyes at David Chiang in off-kilter close-ups is just too much.

Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: cal42
Date: 05/20/2006

It’s 1925, “In a city in China” as the opening caption helpfully points out. Chinese Opera player Master Guan Yu Lo (Ti Lung) is killed after warning off some corrupt officials whose boss is suspected of having an affair with his wife. Yo Lo’s brother Hsiao Lo (David Chiang) rolls into town to avenge his brother’s death.

What seems like a simple revenge plot gets bogged down in places with contrived complexities.

The nature of David Chiang’s character is established right from his first scene upon arrival. He visits his late brother’s wife, and without further ado, stabs her sleeping partner repeatedly in the stomach – without knowing (or caring) who it is. In fact, David Chiang’s a psycho in this. If you look closely, you may be able to see why. In various scenes, he crushes an unlit cigarette in his fists – he’s clearly trying to give up smoking and is suffering terrible nicotine withdrawal symptoms. No wonder he’s so cranky. When he DOES smoke, he’s far more reasonable.

Anyhow. David Chiang has a romantic sub-plot with his brother’s wife’s sister, and far from giving the film substance, it just makes the proceedings falter and stall. Although the final scenes where David Chiang exacts his bloody revenge are good, I found this film difficult to like.

Today’s top tip: never wear a white suit to a massacre.

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: Sydneyguy
Date: 01/27/2004
Summary: The forgot the word BLOODY in the title

It's hard to rate this movie, when David chiangs brother dies tragically, hes out for revenge, and from the first few scenes, you can see he means business!!

Though i simple revenge story i like it a lot. The action is good for it's time. The actors play their roles well!!

If you want a bit of mindless violence with a lot of blood and a simple plot, look over this way!! A must see for revenge kung fu lovers!!

9/10

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: MrBooth
Date: 01/19/2004
Summary: 3/5

*** VENGEANCE: A really stripped down piece of cinema, very focussed and all the more effective for it. I doubt Chang Cheh had much real involvement.

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: pjshimmer
Date: 10/11/2001
Summary: one of the bloodiest

This movie is said to be one that guarenteed Shaw Bros its spotlight in the 70s, along with One Armed Boxer. It's got a pretty simple plot but without much flaw, except this: Chang Cheh never takes in measure realism or common sense, and he always has the protagonist stabbed in 10 placed 99 times who yet still fights with full strengh. Having seen 50 of Cheh's movies, I have almost gotten used to this trope.

It is obvious that David Chiang was uncomfortable with the romantic scenes. He works well for the protagonist role, but I think Ti Lung would have worked even better.

some portions of the film are very well done, like the curtain closing scene mentioned below. However, there was too much bloodletting. In particular was Ti Lung's missing eyeballs. I don't think I've ever seen anything more disturbing. Since I am not a person who likes bloodiness, having a city of it certainly does not get my thumbs up.

All in all, a very, very serious and pessimistic movie (like OUATIC 1), as you can tell from the title. The last scene featuring David Chiang and Wong Ping together reminded me of the typical emotional, perhaps-romantic, mournful scenes in the new wave pictures, especially Fong Sai Yuk 2. It's not hard to see why this film is a pioneer.

[7/10]


Reviewed by: SBates
Date: 02/02/2001
Summary: Also called Kung Fu Vengeance

This is a minor unarmed fighting film from Change Cheh, not the eqaul to DUEL OF IRON FIST, but...
There is an early sequence in this film that is completely amazing!!! Ti Lung is the upright boxer, and an Opera performer, who takes on the local no-goodniks. In the fight where he dies, about 20 mins into the film, his bloody death is intercut with scenes of Chinese opera, and his final throes juxtaposed with a closing curtain. A very striking death scene, quite simple imagery but very very well-done.