Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Cub Tiger of Kwang Tung|
Actors: Jackie Chan, Tien Feng
Director: Chu Mu
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House
Jackie Chan's first starring role sees him play a young waiter who also happens to be a kung fu fanatic, although his Father (Tien Fong-Fist of fury) has forbidden him from learning the martial arts. Jackie trains in se... more »
"It is not easy to be a delivery boy!"
Shawn McKenna | Modesto, CA USA | 02/28/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Contrary to popular belief and even in contrast to Jackie Chan and many other sources, "Cub Tiger From Kwang Tung" (aka Little Tiger of Canton) was finished and even had a small release (probably around 1973 or 1974, I currently cannot find exact details) though it was filmed a few years earlier in 1971, done a little before his stunt work in "Fist of Fury". Chan was given an opportunity to star in this movie by his "biggest sister" from his Peking Opera youth whom was now an assistant to a film producer. In Chan's autobiography "I Am Jackie Chan" he has nothing good to say about this experience stating "One night, the director and producer quietly disappeared, taking with them any hope that the movie would be finished." It is not his first film either, he had done several movies as a child actor in the 60s with "Big and Little Wong Tin-Bar" (1962) being his first appearance in a movie. He looks quite young though and slight of build compared to his later appearances.
Jackie Chan (he uses the screen name Chan Yuen Lung using Sammo Hung's old opera name) portrays Hsiao Hu, an adopted precocious martial art youth who has been brought up by a semi-sadistic foster dad (Tien Feng: Fist of Fury, Young Master) and enjoys sparring with his foster sister Hsiao Lam (Shu Pei-Pei) when he is not working for his Uncle Chiang at Chiang Kee Noodles. Hsiao Hu does not know that his real Dad died absorbing Lu Chi's aka 3rd Brother (Kwan Chung) "Leg of Doom" (the move sounds good, does not look that impressive though should be named "Leg of Partial Hurt") so Tien Feng could get away and raise his Hsiao Hu.
Meanwhile, back at the noodle shop, a group of ruffians order a plethora of food, yet refuse to pay. Hu's superior Kung Fu is shown as he destroys them in fighting. Lu Chi just happens to be their boss and this angers him immensely when he finds out. Hu's foster dad is perturbed by his fighting and tortures him with excess work. At first it is just moving extra pails of water, but after another incident (even though he saved his sister) he is forced to put his hands into broken glass (great dad). Later, he forces Hu to "really" fight his foster sister (later in the film though he states that they were made for each other). Of course, Hu's foster dad is only trying to prevent him from using his Kung Fu so he won't be found out by the vengeful Lu Chi (though I do not think this point is ever explicitly said). As in any martial art movie
I can only recommend this for Jackie Chan or martial art movie fanatics for completeness. The editing is quite bad and the story is a bit hard to follow leaving lots of floating plot points. The lifted score (I am pretty sure this is not an original piece) is quite annoying as it is repetitively used. The martial art action is decent though, Jackie Chan looks quite better than everyone else and so the pacing is sometimes off in the fights. The finale works as well as it should though the highpoint of the film is the demonstration of skills during the beginning credits where Chan gets to show off his technique and acrobatic skills (the 70's Jackie films show Chan do more of his Peking Opera background than later films as well as this film shows him pre-eye surgery).
The film quality of the Rarescope R1 edition is quite poor with a cropped picture (shown 2:35:1, but a lot of image is missing), burnt-in subtitles that are occasionally replaced by "other" subtitles when the cropping interferes (and that replacement also has typos and grammar mistakes) and copious amounts of damage. Also, the back cover description has many mistakes with its summation of the plot. The funniest is the combo of "his father has forbidden him ... from learning the martial arts" and "... killed his father many years before." Still it is nice to have available in a non-"Master with Cracked Fingers" version shown close to what it originally was.
The extras are a hodge-podge of trailers, still gallery and a 6-plus minute questionnaire and answer with Jackie Chan. The still gallery is not too bad with what looks like lobby cards and stills from the movie. The Q and A with Jackie Chan is a shaky camcorder print of Jackie being questioned after a showing of "Rumble in the Bronx" (quick talk about the longer HK cut). So this was probably originally filmed around 1997 in the UK (the year it came out in UK) with other clues such as the accents and he talks quickly about future projects: Police Story 5 (probably talking about New Police Story though that would not come out until 2004), a western story (obviously talking about the future "Shanghai Noon" (2000)), a South African story ("Who Am I" (1998)) and about finishing A Nice Guy (later known as "Mr. Nice Guy"; though filming was done in 1997). Not much is learned from this extra other than a quick mention of the "fireman story" that never came about and audiences that are annoying are ubiquitous. Jackie is asked to perform some moves (which he absolutely hates to be asked to do) and he feigns a previous knee injury though later he can be seen bouncing around without any problems.