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飛燕蝴蝶斬 (1978)
Flying Swallow

Reviewed by: Bruce
Date: 11/08/2001
Summary: Typical Tin Peng swordplay, not much else.

The Ocean Shores dubbed version seems to have been cut at least 20 minutes, with plot threads abruptly abandoned, too-rapid scene changes, quick leaps of time, and deleted gore. Whether an uncut version would be any better, is hard to tell. Once his screen image became firmly established in the mid-1970's, Tien Peng played the same character over and over: the cool, confident, heroic warrior who never gets riled up, deadly, yet kind and considerate. (Indeed, his kindness is often all that really distinguishes him from his arrogant opponents.) Tien does indeed have stellar charisma. The film starts off with a martial arts tournament in which a variety of weapons are used, but afterwards the film is primarily a standard circa-1980 swordplay film, with a very weak plot. (And concerning that martial arts tournament, it really makes no sense. Who would volunteer to compete in such a tournament, where every elimination round is a fight to the death?) Chia Ling has second billing, but she doesn't appear until nearly the end of the film, and she is only in one scene, with some brief sparring swordplay and dialogue. I found this film to be a major disappointment, made even worse by the annoying subplot of the jealous fat guy. Probably the best thing about this film is the really neat sound effect when two swords clash together. If you are going to watch this film, don't expect much else.