Sword of Emei
Hong Kong 1969
Directed by Chan Lit Bun.


The first of Josephine Siao's many swordswoman films that has actually been released with English subtitles! VCD only, a beat up, unrestored print, Black and White for a quite possibly color film, but still, here it is, and fans of FONG SAI YUK quite simply must pick this up to see her in her prime, cutting a path of vengeance through literally a hundred henchmen of the evil Chao Pai-tien (played by the ultimate Cantonese cinema villain, Shek Kin). Josephine Siao is the "Masked Hero", who uses her powerful Chin-Fang sword and martial arts skills to steal from the rich and help the poor. Chao Pai-tien wants her stopped, but more importantly, wants to get his hand on her sword. A wandering swordsman comes to town (Kenneth Tsang) with another Chin-Fang sword, and though at first they seem to be enemies, at last he joins forces with the "Masked Hero" to do away with the baddies once and for all. Action packed. Josephine Siao has one line out of costume in the first half an hour or so, the rest of which time she is hacking, slaying, and taunting countless opponents. Quite gory, too, with spouts of blood and the occasional severed limb punctuating the action. SWORD OF EMEI bears a striking resemblance to the Shaw Brothers Mandarin language film Black Butterfly, released the year prior. It is a good illustration of how the Cantonese and Mandarin language films were copying from each other throughout the sixties. Though the Shaw Brothers film has the better sets and glorious colors, SWORD OF EMEI is far superior in terms of acting, action, and story.

Rating: Recommended (Recommended)

Posted by Peter Nepstad on October 24, 2005.


Comments

Peter
Do you know if this is related to the 4 Flying Sword Hero From Emei Mountain that Wong Jing's father directed in 1950?
I will use your link to buy the vcd
Thanks
Mark

Posted by: Mark Ferguson at October 25, 2005 03:09 PM

Thanks Mark. I'm almost positive there is no relation between the film series, unfortunately. That earlier series looks like it is filled with special effect fantasy fights, whereas SWORD OF EMEI has very grounded, though still wildly improbable, action. Also, Mt. Emei is never even alluded to here as far as I could tell. Emei is one of the founding points for martial arts, as such it comes up frequently in films. In short, probably just coincedence, though I'd love to see those films from the 50's, if they still exist, to find out!

Posted by: PTN at October 26, 2005 12:01 PM
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