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借刀殺人 (1981)
Hitman in the Hand of Buddha

Reviewed by: Frank Lakatos
Date: 09/29/2005
Summary: This is a full fledged Korean production........

This is a full fledged Korean production that was edited into a Hong Kong version by Hwang Jang Lee and his short lived production company. There are two versions, the HK and Korean versions(recently found in Seoul Korea, which was edited personally by Hwang), which have major differences, including the fighting sound effects, a reshot and edited Shaolin temple scenes, and a finale fight with Eddie Ko that last 15 minutes longer than the HK version. The Korean version is the best, and in both versions, the music score sare excellent. The Korean version is available on the Eastern Heroes special edition DVD. Both versions are well written and the fight scenes are beautifully shot by Hwang, Mang Hoi, and Corey Yuen. **** for the Korean version/*** for the Hong Kong version/*****

Reviewed by: Inner Strength
Date: 04/26/2002
Summary: Good

Well, although the plot is limited, the fight scenes are excellent. The story is entertaining enough, though the film seemed a little too short. Still, a pretty good kung fu movie.

Rating: 3.5/5

Reviewed by: MrBooth
Date: 12/06/2001
Summary: Above average old school

HITMAN IN THE HAND OF BUDDHA (1981). Above average old school fighter, written/starring/directed by/with/on Hwang Jang Lee, who is a good fighter (famous for his kicks) and a decent enough director. Hwang arrives in a small town looking for work, and moves in with his sister and absurdly camp step-brother. Once there, he ends up in conflict with the local bad guys, and his heroic streak brings about trouble for his family. Features the usual training sequences from an excellent Fan Mui Sang and some Shaolin Monks, and fight scenes which vary from the excellent to the mediocre. Most notable for the tendency of the movie to end up in the brothel every 10 minutes or so. I watched the UK Eastern Heroes DVD, which contains both the English dub and the Korean dub versions (different cuts). I've only watched the English version so far, and it has decent picture (more or less full frame though) but some of the worst dubbing I've ever heard. The Korean cut is from a much worse source (quality wise), and the dubbing seemed equally bad, but at least it was bad dubbing in a language I can't speak. Shall watch it fully some other time I expect.