Chinese Iron Man (1973)

Directed by
Great action
Reviewed by Simon on 2006-05-19

The story is simple, and a blatant response to Fist Of Fury - super-evil Japanese occupiers are strutting around town like they own the place, until they are challenged by a tough Chinese chef (Wen Chiang-Long) who refuses to kow-tow to them. Zero subtlety or balance to be found here, but that was the spirit of the times I guess.

The film features much of the same cast and crew as Triangular Duel, and appears to have been shot about the same time (many of the sets, locations and haircuts reappear here). The story is less interesting (which is actually quite an achievement) and the acting equally non-existent... but the film delivers even more action. The fights are again quite realistic(-seeming), with a lot of full contact blows and some very long takes. It often seems like the fighters are improvising - i.e. really fighting - though there are some more obviously choreographed and occasionally outlandish moments in the tournament-style finale. Wen Chiang-Long doesn't have the same grace or poise as Bruce Lee, but is an impressive fighter - especially because the fights have a more desperate, life-or-death quality, rather than the stagy "let me show off my skills" fights Bruce choreographed for himself. Wen is a bit closer here to the invincible Chinese hero archetype Bruce created than his character in Triangular Duel was, though.

One disappointment is that Nancy Yen doesn't get to fight in this film - I was hoping to see more of her in action after TD. Choi Wang's appearance is only brief too, but there are plenty of other good fighters to keep us entertained.

Not a lot to the film except the fighting, but certainly one that fans of kung fu will want to see :)