4 June 2011 | BA_Harrison
Carter, the unstoppable martial arts machine.
Carter Wong plays Ai Sung-Chueh, a conniving prince who uses forgery, murder and deceit to become emperor. On hearing that the Shaolin monks are about to revolt, he enrols himself at their temple, determined to learn their kung fu secrets.
My DVD of 'Return of the 18 Bronzemen' describes this film as 'Old Skool Kung Fu'; reading between the lines, this means unimpressive martial arts, bad dubbing, unusually large eyebrows, wobbly music, a woman unconvincingly passing for a man, and lots of crap sound effects. Sure enough, the first half an hour or so delivers this in spades, but once the action moves to the Shaolin temple, where Carter Wong trains as a Shaolin warrior and attempts to pass the bronze-man test, things begin to get a LOT more entertaining.
Fans of creaky kung fu films will have a blast watching Carter as he battles robotic monks wearing gold lamé and cardboard armour sprayed gold, wanders through booby-trapped tunnels, and fights blokes coated from head to toe in metallic paint; I couldn't get enough of this guy as he repeatedly fails the test but keeps coming back for more. Finally, as he looks set to complete the challenge, he is thwarted at the final hurdle, after which the woman who unconvincingly passed for a man earlier in the film turns up once again, unsuccessfully tries to kill him, and the film abruptly ends.
6.5 out of 10, rounded up to 7 for IMDb.