The Eagles Killer

Those who know more about such things than me have previously stated that the fighting in this movie isn’t that great. My ignorance in that department is an issue here because the film follows its young orphan protagonist Tai on his quest to find a master to teach him kung-fu. Clearly fighting ensues at every stage of the journey, but a more weathered eye than mine is required to determine badass not very good kung-fu from badass awesome kung-fu, which ostensibly he learns towards the end of the film. I mean I can see that Tais opponents seemed to look way more badass as the film goes on, but the fighting just all looked like fighting to me. Another upshot of my ignorance is that I have a tendency to think that the plot of all kung-fu movies is just a contrived effort to move onto the next fight scene, making me wonder if it might have been better for all involved to just cut it out altogether. However I usually concur that to a kung-fu aficionado (fuficionado) the progression in the fight scenes is an integral part of the overall structure. I have seen enough kung-fu movies though to tell you that this is a rather low budget, hastily produced movie, but it has its charms, not least its cocky, yet likeable twerp of a protagonist. Another thing I love about these kung-fu movies from the eighties is the way in which they depict a world in which every single man is obsessed with fighting. Its like watching the Sound of Music except instead of bursting into song at the drop of a hat the whole scene descends into kung-fu chaos. It also has one female character though. She gets to be in a scene to serve some food (to both fish and men). Then she dies. She is blind. Bechdel test be damned. There is a dubbed version of this film which was certainly tempting because it is simply hilariously bad. Not quite hilarious enough though to not be annoying, and I switched to subtitles about ten minutes in. I am kind of conflicted about this movie, my head says it wasn’t good enough to recommend, but the reality of it is I found it quite entertaining in spite of its many flaws. If you don’t think you can stomach the whole thing at least check out the hilarious dubbing, then the opening credits – where a guy dismembers a skeleton for no reason at all. Awesome.

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