5 Fingers of Death (Tian xia di yi quan) (2003)

5 Fingers of Death (Tian xia di yi quan)


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Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

One of the Shaw Brothers Studios most well-known films, King Boxer was an international success that helped instigate the kung fu craze of the '70s. It opens with an old master (Wen Chung Ku) attacked in an alley. He fends off the fighters, but decides he isn't strong enough to travel to a martial arts school to learn the Iron Fist (also called Iron Palm) fighting technique. He sends his pupil and son-in-law Chao Chi-Hao (Lo Lieh) instead. When Chao arrives at the school, he finds the students … More

Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Romance, Art House & International
Directed By: ,
Written By: Yang Chiang, Lieh Lo
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 3, 2000
Warner Bros. Pictures



as Chao Chi-hao

as Sung Ying Ying

as Han Lung

as Meng Tien-hsiun
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Critic Reviews for 5 Fingers of Death (Tian xia di yi quan)

All Critics (8) | Top Critics (1)

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

[VIDEO ESSAY] Before Bruce Lee's "Enter the Dragon" set a new standard for the American public's newfound obsession with martial arts movies in 1973, another, more traditional, Chinese Kung Fu movie had already set the stage for its success.

Full Review… | November 18, 2013

Despite the convoluted plot and large tapestry of characters, the film is packed with amazing moments, crisply shot and edited.

Full Review… | July 6, 2007
Combustible Celluloid

Helped bring on the kung fu craze of the '70s.

Full Review… | April 4, 2007
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

December 8, 2006

August 22, 2005

Audience Reviews for 5 Fingers of Death (Tian xia di yi quan)


Spectacular classic kung fu film that shows the violent so the action choreography and story were the main attraction. This is a story of revenge (for killing a loved one) and the pursuit of the main character to master the "iron-fist-technique" that will enable him to wreak holy vengeance on his enemies. There is even a love interest, though the awkward, polite kind (found in most Chinese films of the period). The end result however is great and much more authentic than any Bruce Lee movies.

Dean McKenna

Super Reviewer

Another great Dragon Dynasty release. Awesome kung fu flick that actually improves with repeat viewings. I was surprised at how much was actually going on with all the different characters, and how certain characters shift back and forth during the movie. Really good stuff and a well deserved classic. Plus, great commentary track on the DVD.

Christopher Brown

Super Reviewer

This belongs in the Rival Schools subgenre of martial arts flicks, and it's definitely one that would top the list.
It starts off tame enough but builds up and up and delivers devastation and betrayal that almost becomes Shakespearean. Also if you've made it half way through only to find a lack a blood, don't fret, the spray will come and come hard in the last 3rd.

Patrick Dolan

Super Reviewer

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