Choi Lee Fat Kung Fu (1979)

Directed by
Great kung fu, lame comedy, no plot
Reviewed by Simon on 2007-04-25

A young lad learns kung fu from two masters using unusual but impressive training methods, then uses it to fight a villain.

It was 1979, and everybody was kung fu fighting, in a comedy style, hoping to find the next Jackie Chan (because they'd had so much success trying to find "the next Bruce Lee"?). Cliff Lok had been around at least as long as Jackie, and studied under Yu Jim Yuen and numerous other sifus, so he must have seemed like a good candidate to somebody. If skill in kung fu and acrobatics were all that the role required he would pass with flying colours, but he doesn't really have the face or the charm for comedy, or 'leading man' roles in general I'd have thought.

Choi Lee Fat Kung Fu might be a failure as a comedy (no, it definitely is), but it does feature some great kung fu and training scenes. There are a number of extremely talented performers on hand - Cliff himself, Sharon Yeung Pan-Pan, the inimitable Philip Ko (a man who knew he was born a villain) and the extremely impressive Chan Siu-Pang, who also directs. The choreography is intricate and inventive, and the execution is unmistakably authentic... this is real kung-fu, performed by real experts, and it's impressive stuff.

And if that's all your looking for, the film will surely not disappoint. If that's not your cup of tea, then... I don't know why you're reading reviews for this film!