Brothers Five (1970)

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One of Lo Wei's best films
Reviewed by Simon on 2007-03-20

The master of Flying Dragon Villa is betrayed and killed by an usurper, and his five sons are sent off to separate destinations by his friend, each given a matching scar to identify them. Many years later the friend tells his daughter (Cheng Pei-Pei) the story and tasks her with finding the five sons and reuiniting them, so that they can take revenge. As luck would have it, all five happen to be on their way to Flying Dragon Villa with one grievance or another - but on their own they are no match for their enemies - but, luck being in plentiful supply it appears, Miss Yen has a manual for an invincible kung-fu technique that requires five martial artists to work in unison.

Brothers Five is clearly a premiere production from Shaw Brothers, with very high production values and a stellar cast. The plot is deeply implausible, but the characters are interesting and well written. The pacing flags in a couple of places, but for the most part it is a highly entertaining tale. The action from Hsu Erh-Niu and Sammo Hung is exceptional for the time - consistently interesting and exciting (and there's a lot of it). Cheng Pei-Pei is of course wonderful! Definitely one of Lo Wei's best films.


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