"Believe me, my sword loves impaling traitors like you!"
D. Wilson | NY by way of Cali | 10/08/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Highly entertaining film that pits the best in Japan against the greatest in China for an annual "Duel To The Death" to prove their respective martial arts superiority. The movie gets most everything right by making both our Chinese and Japanese leads near equals (and both likeable in different ways) rather than leaning heavily towards one over the other. It also does a nice job subtley showing the differences and similarities of the two cultures locked in battle (from garb and swords to ethics and beliefs). The fighting here is pretty good although rarely lasting longer than a few minutes and implements Wuxia style flying and jumps here and there (this is an early film of Hero choreographer Siu-Tung Ching). The violence is exagerated and graphic with enough blood and limbs being hacked off to keep me happy including an excellent decapitation! As far as the production goes I was impressed with the killer soundtrack and memorable/bizzare visuals including a sky full of ninjas flying on kites, a talking severed head, a huge ninja that splits into several (including a fully nude female!), a legless man storming around on crutches... and the effects are all top notch (this is 1982 people?!). The finale finally matches China's master swordsman against Japan's finest samurai and the results are a gruesome and entertaining way to top everything off. The DVD release from Fox/Fortune Star looks and sounds great (and can be bought on the cheap) although the "special features" include nothing but 2 trailors?!"
T. Walton | Newport News, VA, USA | 11/26/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There is not a whole lot to say about this movie execpt for the fact that IT IS AWESOME. I got a perfect copy with perfect sound and I really enjoyed the movie."