30 November 2011 | wandering-star
Entertaining - all the classic elements of Shaw Bros
The tartars have invaded from the north, and a patriotic general is resisting with a force of 100,000 men. The traitor Chin Hui has sent out 12 medallions (decrees), to different clans to stop the resistance. Other clans (resistors) are attempting to intercept these medallions.
One such resistor is Miao Lung, from the Hua Shan clan "wavering sword style". We are introduced to him as an ordinary fried roll vendor, who becomes involved in the quest to stop the delivery of the medallions.
Lung must turn against his old master, Jin Yantang, who joins the traitors. Jin's daughter, Jin Suo, is the love interest who must choose between allegiance to her father or country.
The plot is paced well and you can't argue with such elements as sword fights atop pine trees, the five finger palm strike of death, poison darts, smoke bombs, and such characters as the "Mountain Slicing Squad" and a strange band of 5 purple clad kung fu women.
I would have scored it 8 but the fight choreography/intensity does not quite match up to the best of the genre. Some really good humour used throughout. Probably belongs in the top half of Shaw Bros films. If you're a fan of the genre, you'll likely enjoy it!