Finally, the Shaw Brothers releases I have been waiting for.
morgoth | omaha, NE | 02/01/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"When the master of a huge kung fu family is dying, he marries a gorgeous young woman so that his somewhat evil brother (played by Johnny Wang Lung Wei) won't inherit all of his possessions. Wang Lung Wei being the villain that he is looks to steal the will when his brother dies. Kara Hui plays the aunt and goes to take the will to her late husband's other brother (Lau Kar Leung). Lau gives himself a rare lead role and his son is played by his real life disciple, Hsiao Hou. Hsiao Hou has plans to make his grand aunt look like a fool.
Lau Kar Leung's comedy is on full display in this classic. Hsiao Hou and Gordon Liu play friends in the movie and there are plenty of odd situations, such as fencing at a masquerade party.
If you are not a fan of Lau's comedies, I can guarantee that you won't like this movie. But if you do like his comedy then you can expect this to be one of his very best. Almost a 5 star movie, but it could have used a couple more good fights.
If you are someone who watches these movies just for the fights, you may want to at least take a glance at this. The final fight between Wang Lung Wei and Lau Kar Leung is a short masterpiece. Wilson Tong has 2 very good fights, and there is no better choice than having the chiseled Kwang Young Moon play the iron skin master. His fights could have been better, but this movie is so star studded it can easily be forgiven. Yuen Tak gets in some good fencing action, and so does Gordon Liu, while wearing a blonde wig!
Picture quality is perfect. I didn't spot a single blemish. The mono Mandarin track sounds good. No Cantonese track unfortunately. The English dub is the way to go since it gives a better translation than the subtitles. If you do listen to the English dub, you will need to turn the subtitles on when Gordon Liu sings his song. Yeah, that's right, Gordon Liu sings, and also plays guitar.
Special features contain a horrible commentary, a great 22 minute interview with Kara Hui, a gallery of posters and production stills, and a bunch of original Shaw trailers. ORIGINAL trailers. I must emphasize this. They have the original trailers for 'One-Armed Swordsman', 'The 36th Chamber of Shaolin' (AKA The Master Killer)', 'The Blood Brothers', 'Buddha's Palm', 'Mad Monkey Kung Fu' and 'Heroes of the East' (AKA Shaolin Challanges Ninja). Special features don't get any better than these trailers. Just as an added bonus, Dragon Dynasty has included the original trailer for 'Infernal Affairs 3'.
The commentary is not very good if you are looking to learn about the genre. They make fun of Kwan Young Moon's iron skin technique and say there must be something sexual going on. It probably would have helped if these idiots had seen the movie 'Executioners from Shaolin' where Pai Mei uses this technique. And they don't even know who Kwan Young Moon is. There are tons of actors that show up and they don't have a clue of who they are. Guys like Yuen Tak, Johnny Wang Lung Wei and Wilson Tong. This isn't even something you research, it is something you know if you are a fan of the genre. If they didn't know the names, I could understand that, but at least they could have said something like- "hey, there's the guy who fights Gordon Liu at the end of 'Martial Club' and 'Return to the 36th Chamber'. There was literally nothing brought up that I found interesting. They barely talk about the actors and they could have talked about a lot of other intersting stuff like the Shaw Brothers studios, how the actors careers started, Mona Fong, how much money the movie made..., but no, it is 2 hours of worthless commentary."
Another Liu brother classic remastered!
Michael W. Jaworski | Fairfield, NJ USA | 03/05/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I noticed an error in the details; the screen format is 2:35:1, not 1:66:1, and there are quite a few extras like an awesome 22 minute interview with the "Young Auntie" herself, Kara Hui Ying-Hung and original widescreen Shaw Brothers trailers. This is NOT a bootleg, this is a re-mastered version of a great Liu Chia-liang (Lau Kar-leung) movie. I'm not going to go into the plot, but I will say that this one is a Liu comedy. If his brand of comedy appeals to you, you will definitely enjoy this. Besides, the fu (choreography by Liu & Hsiao Hou) is absolutely incredible. Many great cameos by Gordon Liu (who sings and plays guitar here), Kwon Young-Moon, Wilson Tong & Yuen Tak (one of Jackie Chan's classmates during their Opera school days). Many great set-pieces including a ballroom dance turning into an all-out brawl, European fencing versus Chinese swordplay & the numerous martial bouts towards the film's end, culminating with a fantastic bout between Johnny Wang & Liu Chia-liang (seen on the bottom of the DVD's cover). In short, a classic Liu Chia-liang comedy, a great looking DVD by Dragon Dynasty; crisp, blemish- free picture, widescreen, clear audio & re-mastered subtitles. However, stay away from the English dub & the audio commentary, quite simply, stinks on ice."
Solid fights surrounded by alot of sub-par filler.
D. Wilson | NY by way of Cali | 09/10/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Considered by many to be a Kung Fu classic, this Lau Kar-Leung flick is another of those films that has much to enjoy, however; the material in between those scenes can be pretty rough! Kara Hui is introduced here as the central character(The Young Auntie if you will). Although nice to look at and a strong female lead, I found her character to be fairly unlikeable and her fighting scenes are probably the worst in the film. Hsiao Hou plays the charismatic nephew who is always trying to show his Kung Fu superiority (great facial expressions) and is impressive even when scripted into campy situations(like sword-fighting with a small army knife while dressed as Peter Pan!?). Lau Kar-Leung steals the show to no real suprise. He is obviously the best fighter of the entire cast(although Gordon Liu shows up in a bit part) and is electric throughout. The movie clocks in at roughly 2 hours and even though there are fight scenes scattered through the first hour and a half it is the final half hour, filled with Kung Fu mayhem and Leung and Hou fighting alongside to rescue thier Aunt that saved this for me. And that great finale is what elevates this to the 3 stars I gave it... everything up until then is worth watching once but rather forgettable. If you do enjoy the genre comedy elements of this era(slapstick, misunderstandings, sexual inuendo, bizzare situations, dance routines, etc.) than this is a must own... these are the elements that brought the film down for me personally. Either way this is worth a viewing and the DVD release by Dragon Dynasty is top notch as always(special features are a rare letdown though)."
Fantastic Action-Comedy will a very sexy and very cool leadi
D. R. Foley | Indianapolis, IN USA | 10/03/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I had never seen this movie before purchasing it but I knew of it's reputation as one of the first kung-fu comedies and I was intrigued. Besides I like girls who can kick ass. I found it to be very entertaining, the fight choreography was very good, and it was far funnier then I thought it was going to be and the star, Kara Hui looks beautiful. Like alot of the Shaw Brothers movies; they have a somewhat dated feel to them but I think it works in it's favor as a bridge between what kung-fu movies were in the 1970' and early '80's and what they have become now. I highly reccomend this movie because it's fun, lighthearted, and a little sexy."
Ronald Griscom | Pennsauken, NJ USA | 10/09/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was thrilled to see the new release of the Shaw Brothers martial arts films on DVD. I remember sitting in front of the TV every Saturday in the '70's and '80's watching Kung Fu movies. And Shaw Brothers films were always the best.
Having said this, My Young Auntie was a waste of film. There are a few good fights, but the attempts at comedy totally bog the film down. Perhaps to an Asian audience this film is hilarious. Jackie Chan, in an interview about the Rush Hour movies, stated that he really doesn't understand American humor. Perhaps this is my problem with this film -- I may not understand Chinese humor.
In any case, if you are a hardcore fan of the Shaw Brothers films. buy this for your collection. If you are looking for an action-packed classic Kung Fu movie, look elsewhere."