The Absurd Brave (1969)

Directed by
Unconventional, not particularly successful
Reviewed by Simon on 2023-09-05

The bandit Lady 9-Flower ambushes the official that sentenced her father to death, and takes her revenge. The official's son swears revenge-revenge and seeks out his uncle Ouyang De to learn how to fight.

The Absurd Brave is a curious beast, a wuxia comedy whose plot and tone jump about wildly. Opening with a vicious massacre it then leads into a sort of screwball comedy, as Ouyang De is a supremely talented but extremely goofy martial artist, and he doesn't like to kill so he seeks other forms of punishment.

Meanwhile, Lady 9-Flower and her gang are raping and murdering like there's no tomorrow.

The plot is somewhat episodic, but events are all loosely tied together, it's just not always immediately clear why one scene follows another. I don't know if it was written like that, or the director was just very easily distracted and went off-script a lot.

It would be nice to say the film was successful in its various endeavours at least, but the comedy is too juvenile to be amusing in this day and age, and the film's action scenes are adequate but nothing special.

The film is still interesting because it is unconventional - e.g. the hero is a weird nerd and the beauty is a treacherous murderer, which isn't how those roles were typically assigned, but it's probably only worth watching out of historical interest.

The film spawned a sequel called Lady 9-Flower, but I assume she is still the villain as the Chinese title is more like "Ouyang De vs Lady 9-Flower", which suggests it follows on directly from events here.


Action Director
Assistant Director

See also