MARTIAL MONKS OF SHAOLIN TEMPLE

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Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple Cover Shhh! Be quiet. Be very-very quiet. Be like a tree wafting in the cool breeze during a calming summer's day in relax-town. Or alternatively, be like those mean looking bruisers seen in this 88-minute movie made in 1983. Yes. That's right. I'm referring this film Directed by: Godfrey Ho; and Starring: Dragon Lee, Jang Lee Hwang, and Gene Chan.


Champ Against Champ - Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple


THE STORY:
Youu-whoooooo! Mister scary-looking Shaolin-monk type-person! Once you've finished disemboweling that ugly-looking cretin who can't digest his food properly, could you possibly help me avenge my master's death please? You know. By kicking the living cr*p out of that twat who's in charge of the Wu-Dong school, Kurt Wong (Jang Lee Hwang)!

Huh? What's that, Monk? You will help me! But only after this film dedicates itself to forty-five minutes of inane fighting sequences that don't amount to a hill of beans? Alright then. Fair enough. I suppose that sounds entirely reasonable within the scheme of things.

Yet, I must warn you, pal. My name is Dragon Lang (Dragon Lee), and I'm one mean looking mother who has the ability to kick and slide with the best of them.

Still. That's most probably why what next transpires all goes south when a Monk turns out to be not what he initially seems. As feet get licked - people get kicked - necks get clicked - and at the end of the day, nobody on this Godforsaken Earth with be able to predict what this flick can inflict.   

Now who wants to get married?




THE REVIEW:
Now if you're a big fan of films that are high in action, low on plot, and are chock full of dodgy camerawork, dodgier dubbing, plus a plethora of distracting looking wigs and mustaches, then please, sit down and have a look at 'Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple'.

Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple Movie Poster
Honestly. In my eyes this is one of those movies I myself am kind of confused by. I mean, what the hell were the makers of this project trying to accomplish by producing such a thing? Did they really think people would enjoy a story-line that comes and goes as if it were being blown around by a flatulent stutterer? All because they lavished the screen with a very naive narrative complemented by an army of fight sequences?

Oh! And as for the fight sequences in themselves! Ouch! Don't get me started on that particular subject matter! It was as if the director took a nap and left it up to the actors to just duke it out amongst themselves for however long it took them to get tired. Whirling and flipping and flapping and fighting for the sake of extra screen time and nothing else!

Alright. I have to admit. There were a couple of fight sequences involving Dragon Lee and Jang Lee Hwang I didn't mind gawping at. Cause, as you may all well know, these two very proficient martial artists are very good at the old kick and punch. But apart from that.... errr... what can I say? My Mother always tells me to never criticize the disabled. And to me, this film is very-very disabled. From the plot upwards.


Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple Starring Dragon Lee and Jang Lee Hwang


Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple DVD
Wait up! I know what we can do to fill the void. Let's sit back, and have us some of these filmic-facts. (1) 'Asso Asia Films' first released this production in the very same year Sally Ride became the first American woman in outer space -- 1983. (2) Loosely translated, this project was entitled 'The Death Hit of the Dragon' in Greece. Whilst in Australia, it was re-titled, 'Champ Against Champ'. (3) During his twenty-seven years in the business, the director of this flick, Godfrey Ho, used such pseudonyms as Godfrey Hall, Alton Cheung, Albert Yu, Charles Lee, Robert Young, Herbert Lam, Elton Chong, plus a couple more names I can't be bothered to mention. (4) According to legend, Jang Lee Hwang was bestowed with the two nicknames, 'Silver Fox' and the 'King of the Leg Fighters', because during his time in the Korean Army, he once killed a Vietnamese knife-fighter in self-defense. (5) Now if you know what you're looking for, I'm sure you'll be able to spot the following two filmic references inserted into this adventure. The first reference relates to the Jackie Chan film, 'Fearless Hyena', because Dragon Lee's character draws inspiration from Jackie's character seen in that film. Whilst the second reference relates to the Bruce Lee film, 'Enter the Dragon', because in the penultimate final scene, Dragon's character receives similar battle scars Bruce did from that filmic classic. (6) Thankfully this was the only escapade Richard Sam ever wrote throughout his very short lived career, Ha! (7) Now if you've taken into consideration what I just stated in my previous fact, do you think it's just a coincidence that this was the last film Gene Chan, Jacky Lung, Antonio Sieou, Charlie Han, and Doris Tsui, ever starred in? (8) After this movie knocked its flagon, Dragon Lee starred in, 'Ninja Champion'; Godfrey Ho directed, 'Ninja Thunderbolt'; and Jang Lee Hwang starred in, 'Shaolin: The Blood Mission'.


Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple Starring Dragon Lee


Overall I'd say 'Martial Monks of Shaolin Temple' is for die-hard martial-arts film-fans only. The story-line was a silly one. The actors did the best with what they had at hand. And some of the fight scenes were well worth the watch, but only if you don't mind watching a lot of distracting looking wigs and mustaches too.

Nuff said.

THE RATING: C-