Pretty decent Kung Fu flick starring Jet Li. The evil Manchu clan is threatened by an underground rebel secret society called 'The Red Flower Society' who rep the Han's. Meanwhile a young Kung Fu master has fallen for the governors daughter, but must compete in a competition to win her hand in marriage. Although he loses initially, using some less than honest methods, he wins the honour regardless. But do to familial and political issues shit hits the fan, and he and his family find themselves right in the middle of the political upheavel. Pretty good overall, with a good story and plentiful and excellent fight scenes, I did think the romantic comedy-esque elements could have been toned down a lot. I felt that it brought down what otherwise would have been a really good martial arts / historical drama. Ah well, it is what it is, and that is a complaint I have for a lot of the martial arts movies that were coming out at this time. Still a very solid effort and worth a watch for fans of Martial Arts films.
Another awesome kung fu flick from the Shaw Brothers starring Gordon Liu. This one involves Chinese Martial Arts going head to head against Japanese Ninjitsu. Fun stuff for sure with a lot of comedy thrown in for good measure. A chinese man is arranged a marriage to a Japanese woman. They begin arguing almost immiedietly as to who's Kung Fu is better. The Chinese or the Japanese. The husband doesn't mind demonstrating the superiority of Chinese Kung Fu on his wife on a regular basis causing his neighbors to accuse him of beating his wife. When she finally gets sick of his bullshit she returns to Japan, but this doesn't slow her husband down any. He begins sending notes to Japan boasting of his superior martial arts skill, and mocking the inferiority of Japans. When her clan gets a hold of this they take it as a personal insult and challenge. They go to China and challenge him to a competition. He is to beat them one by one in a competition of epic proportions. Really not a dull moment from begining to end. The choreography is awesome, fight scenes plentiful, story good, pacing nice, humour refreshing and so on. Essential viewing.