Love and Sword (1979)

  |  Adventure, Romance


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7 August 2016 | ckormos1
| Big budget Taiwan martial arts melodrama
The movie opens with the night time slaughter of an entire family except for the blind young lady. Tien Peng appears abruptly and offers shelter the lady and assumes the responsibility for revenge. The leaders of the martial arts world have a problem with this and hire killers to get him. Tien Peng also takes as student an orphan boy.

This movie serves as an example of what can result when plenty of money buys sets and costumes, the director has a real script, and the actors can both act and fight.

1979 was a prolific year, if not the most prolific year, for martial arts movies. I have over 150 movies in my collection for that year and I do not have them all. It can be problematic to fairly review these movies simply because of video quality. Very few of these movies, other than Shaw Brothers, exist in proper 16:9 format and high definition of at least 720. Watching a 3rd generation VHS copy of an Ocean Shores release can be tiring on the eyes and mind despite the plot, characters, or martial arts. The copy I have of "Love and Sword" is a "rarescope" DVD. It is widescreen and at least the quality of a laser disk (about 480 resolution I am estimating). Though not fully restored by any claim it is at least not an effort on the eyes and minds. This makes the slow moving parts quite tolerable because of the quality photography. Whereas the slow moving parts of a VHS are simply slow moving. That alone can change one's opinion and review of the movie.

This movie is melodramatic and slow moving at times yet I never reached for the fast forward. The fights were well done but I must criticize the brothel fight for poor focus and lack of power. Overall I rate it just above average for the year and genre.

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