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Blu-ray includes 60 page book featuring new writing by David Desser, Jonathan Clements, Lovely Jon, and David West, plus cast and crew listings and notes on each film by Simon Abrams, new artwork by Mike Lee-Graham, Chris Malbon, Kagan McLeod, Colin Murdoch, "Kung Fu" Bob O'Brien, Lucas Peverill, Ilan Sheady, Tony Stella, Darren Wheeling and Jolyon Yates, hours of never-before-seen bonus features including several cast and crew interviews from the Frederic Ambroisine Video Archive, and two exclusive CD's featuring music from the De Wolfe Music library as heard in several of the films!
14 Kung Fu Classics on Blu-ray from the Godfathers of Hong Kong Cinema - the Shaw Brothers!
Picking up where Volume One left off, this sophomore collection of Hong Kong cinema classics draws together many of the best films from the final years of the Shaw Brothers studio, proving that while the end was nigh, these merchants of martial arts mayhem weren't going to go out without a fight! Armed with stunning special features and ravishing new restorations, this boxset is even bigger and bolder than the last one.
We begin with kung fu master Lau Kar-leung's classic The 36th Chamber of Shaolin, in which Gordon Liu achieved overnight stardom as the young man who finds enlightenment on the path to vengeance; Lau and Liu followed the original with two inventive sequels, Return to the 36th Chamber and Disciples of the 36th Chamber, both included here. A genius at blending dazzling action with physical comedy, Lau plays the lead role in the hilarious Mad Monkey Kung Fu, coupled here with Lo Mar's Five Superfighters. Next, we once again meet Chang Cheh's basher boy band the Venom Mob in four of their best-loved team-ups: Invincible Shaolin, The Kid with the Golden Arm, Magnificent Ruffians and the all-star Ten Tigers of Kwangtung, co-starring Ti Lung and Fu Sheng. After Lau brings us perhaps his best high-kicking comedy with My Young Auntie, a playful star vehicle for his real-life muse Kara Hui, we see Shaw Brothers embracing 80s excess in our strangest double feature yet: Wong Jing's breathtakingly wild shoot-'em up Mercenaries from Hong Kong, and Kuei Chih-hung's spectacularly unhinged black magic meltdown The Boxer's Omen. Last but certainly not least, Lau Kar-leung directs the last major Shaw production, Martial Arts of Shaolin, filmed in mainland China with a hot new talent named Jet Li in the lead role; it is paired in this set with The Bare-footed Kid, a reverent remake of a Chang Cheh classic with Johnnie To in the director's chair and Lau back on choreography duties, in arguably the ultimate filmed tribute to Shaws' everlasting cinematic legacy.
Starring Jet Li, Maggie Cheung, Aaron Kwok, Ti Lung, Gordon Lie, Chia-Hui Liu, Lieh Lo, Hung Wei, Due Wong, Hou Hsiao, Lung-Wei Wang, Lily Li, Jimmy Au, Kara Wai, Feng Lu, Sheng Chiang, Chien Sun, Meng Lo, Li Wang, Phillip Chung-Fung Kwok, Sheng Fu, Michael Wai-Man Chan
Special Features: Hi-Def (1080p) Blu-ray presentation of all 14 films, including 9 new 2K restorations by Arrow Films: Uncompressed Cantonese (excluding The Kid with the Golden Arm and Magnificent Ruffians), Mandarin and English (excluding The Boxer's Omen) original mono audio, plus newly translated English subtitles and optional hard-of-hearing subtitles for the English dubs, Image galleries, and more:
- Disc 1: The 36th Chamber of Shaolin - Brand new 4K restoration by Celestial Pictures and L'Immagine Ritroveta, Brand new feature commentary by critic Travis Crawford, Brand new select-scene commentary by film critic and historian Tony Rayns, Interview with star Gordon Liu, filmed in 2003, Interview with cinematographer Arthur Wong, filmed in 2006, Shaolin: Birthplace of a Hero and Elegant Trails, two archive featurettes with Gordon Liu produced by Celestial Pictures in 2003, Tiger Style: The Musical Impact of Martial Arts Cinema, a newly filmed overview of Shaw Brothers’ influence on hip hop and other music genres, featuring music historian Lovely Jon, Cinema Hong Kong: Swordfighting, the second instalment in a three-part documentary produced by Celestial Pictures in 2003 and featuring interviews with Gordon Liu, Lau Kar-leung, Cheng Pei-pei, John Woo, Sammo Hung, Kara Hui, David Chiang and others, Alternate opening credits from the American version titled Master Killer, Hong Kong and German theatrical trailers, plus US TV spot
- Disc 2: Return to the 36th Chamber / Disciples of the 36th Chamber - Interview with star Gordon Liu, filmed in 2003, Citizen Shaw, a French TV documentary from 1980 directed by Maurice Frydland, in which Sir Run Run Shaw gives an all-access tour of the Shaw Brothers backlot (including behind-the-scenes footage from Return to the 36th Chamber), remastered in high definition, Hero on the Scaffolding, an archive featurette produced by Celestial Pictures in 2003, Alternate opening credits sequences for both films, Hong Kong theatrical trailers for both films
- Disc 3: Mad Monkey Kung Fu / Five Superfighters - Brand new 2K restorations of both films from the original negatives by Arrow Films, Brand new commentary for Mad Monkey Kung Fu by martial arts cinema experts Frank Djeng and Michael Worth, Newly filmed appreciation of Mad Monkey Kung Fu by film critic and historian Tony Rayns, Interview with actor Hsiao Hou, filmed in 2004, Shaw in the USA, a brand new featurette on how Shaw Brothers broke America featuring Grady Hendrix and Chris Poggiali, authors of These Fists Break Bricks, Hong Kong and US theatrical trailers for Mad Monkey Kung Fu, Hong Kong theatrical trailer and UK VHS promo for Five Superfighters
- Disc 4: Invincible Shaolin / The Kid with the Golden Arm - Brand new 2K restorations of both films from the original negatives by Arrow Films, Interview with action director Robert Tai, filmed in 2003, Poison Clan Rocks The World, a brand new visual essay on the Venom Mob written and narrated by author Terrence J. Brady, Alternate 'continuity' cut of The Kid With The Golden Arm, presented via seamless branching, Alternate and textless title sequences for The Kid with the Golden Arm, Hong Kong theatrical trailer for Invincible Shaolin, Hong Kong theatrical trailer (audio only) and US TV spot for The Kid with the Golden Arm
- Disc 5: Magnificent Ruffians / Ten Tigers of Kwangtung - Brand new 2K restorations of both films from the original negatives by Arrow Films, Brand new audio commentary on Ten Tigers of Kwangtung by filmmaker Brandon Bentley, Interview with star Chin Siu-ho, filmed in 2003, Rivers and Lakes, a brand new video essay on Shaw Brothers’ depiction of Chinese myth and history, written and narrated by Jonathan Clements, author of A Brief History of China, Hong Kong (audio only) and German theatrical trailers for Magnificent Ruffians, Hong Kong trailers (Mandarin and Cantonese audio options) and US TV spot for Ten Tigers of Kwangtung
- Disc 6: My Young Auntie - Brand new select-scene commentary by film critic and historian Tony Rayns, Interview with star Kara Hui, filmed in 2003, Cinema Hong Kong: The Beauties of the Shaw Studios, the final instalment in the three-part documentary produced by Celestial Pictures in 2003, Alternate standard-definition VHS version, Hong Kong theatrical trailer
- Disc 7: Mercenaries from Hong Kong / The Boxer's Omen - Brand new 2K restorations of both films from the original negatives by Arrow Films, Brand new commentary on The Boxer’s Omen by critic Travis Crawford, Newly filmed appreciation of filmmaker Kuei Chih-hung by film critic and historian Tony Rayns, Additional footage from Mandarin VHS version of The Boxer's Omen, Interview with Mercenaries from Hong Kong action director Tong Kai, filmed in 2009, Hong Kong theatrical trailers for both films
- Disc 8: Martial Arts of Shaolin / The Bare-Footed Kid - Brand new commentary on Martial Arts of Shaolin by Jonathan Clements, Brand new commentary on The Bare-Footed Kid by Frank Djeng of the NY Asian Film Festival, Newly filmed appreciations of both films by film critic and historian Tony Rayns, Interview with Martial Arts of Shaolin screenwriter Sze Yeung-ping, filmed in 2004, Alternate standard-definition version of Martial Arts of Shaolin, Hong Kong and Japanese theatrical trailers for Martial Arts of Shaolin, plus trailers for the preceding Shaolin Temple films starring Jet Li, Hong Kong theatrical trailer and UK VHS promo for The Bare-Footed Kid
- Disc 9 & 10 - Exclusive CD's featuring music from the De Wolfe Music library
Arrow Video // 1978-1993 // 1415 Minutes // Rated R, Not Rated // Color // Mandarin with English subtitles, Cantonese (where applicable) with English subtitles, English (where applicable) with English SDH // All Region
"Shaw Brothers films take advantage of the ultra-wide aspect ratio they dubbed Shawscope... these films dazzle with their larger-than-life choreography, upbeat pace and encompassing visuals that take over your field of vision." - Brett Berg, American Genre Film Archive
"For a year (before directing Kill Bill), I'd watch one old Shaw Brothers movie a day -- if not three.." Quentin Tarantino, The Los Angeles Times
"The influence of the Shaw Brothers films on my work has been profound" - RZA, New York Times
"If you want to discover the ground zero for martial arts movies, look no further." - Amy Lonsdorf, The Morning Call