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The New Legend of Shaolin
Chinese: 洪熙官
Kung-fu kid Xie Miao
Year: 1994
Director: Wong Jing
Action: Corey Yuen Kwai
Cast: Jet Li Lian-Jie, Chingmy Yau Suk-Ching, Tze Miu (Xie Miao), Deannie Yip Tak-Han, Wang Lung-Wei, Chan Chung-Yung, Damian Lau Chung-Yun, Chu Ko Liang, Adam Cheng Siu-Chow
The Skinny: Occasionally entertaining, but also messy and cartoony to a fault.
 
Review
by Kozo:

This Wong Jing/Jet Li collaboration is messy, loud, and overall a forgettable experience. Li is Hung Hei-Koon, Shaolin disciple and enemy of the imperials. On one bad day, he gets his family wiped out by imperial troops. Only his son is left, so he pulls a Lone Wolf and Cub on him: the kid can choose a rocking horse or a sword. If he chooses a sword, then they’ll be fugitives from the government for years to come. If he chooses the rocking horse, the Hung will send him to hell to join his mom. How's that for parenting?

Needless to say, the kid chooses the sword and grows into the form of kung-fu kid Tze Miu. Years later, the two find themselves stalked by more imperials, and must protect some Shaolin kids who possess the map to an ancient Ming eunuch’s treasure. Aiding them are mom-and-daughter thieves, played by Deannie Yip and Wong Jing starlet Chingmy Yau. Hijinks ensue.

Yuen Kwai’s action is okay, but Jet Li’s rock-like performance and Wong Jing’s cartoonish direction hurt the picture. There are occasional entertaining moments, but on the whole the film is far too frenetic and uneven. Jet Li's presence and Wong Jing's comedic leanings seem to be incompatible anyway. You'd think these guys would see that. (Kozo 1995)

 
Notes: • In 2001, The New Legend of Shaolin was retitled by Columbia/Tri-Star Home Video as The Legend of the Red Dragon and released in the US. The disc is letterboxed with excellent picture quality, but is dubbed and suffers from a few cuts, one of which slightly alters the Fong Sai-Yuk joke/Wong Jing cameo at the end of the film.
Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Universe Laser
Widescreen
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Dolby Digital 5.1
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles

image courtesy of Universe Laser & Video Co., Ltd.

   
   
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