Cinematheque Ontario Report: King Boxer REVIEW

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Well, I’ve been staring at this open word document for far too long now, not sure where to start when talking about the Shaw Brothers’ seminal King Boxer. I don’t know where to start because there are simply so many things to say about it.

Do I introduce this piece by discussing just how ground breaking King Boxer was, as the first Kung Fu film to be a hit in the west? Released in spring 1973 with the exploitation-tastic title of ‘Five Fingers of Death’, it created the Kung Fu phenomenon which continued throughout the 70’s, breaking ground for the likes of Bruce Lee and the many Shaw Brother’s productions that followed.

Or do I take a more trivial hook, and discuss the most familiar musical cue in this film, a repeating klaxon stolen from Ironside. Stolen in turn from this film by serial style-kleptomaniac Quentin Tarantino, it gained fame in his Kill Bill series, but is probably less worthy than the stirring main theme of the film.

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More about King Boxer

Rhythm-XJune 2, 2006 11:50 AM

Let's not overlook the memorable appearance of that same klaxon in the Above The Law track "Murder Rap" from 1990 or thereabouts, well after IRONSIDE and KING BOXER, well before Tarantino used it. It's not hard to picture Quentin driving around LA in the early 90s with his CYF trenchcoat on, blasting Above The Law in his Geo Metro. And it's funny, too.

olivierJune 2, 2006 11:40 PM

If I had 3 Swords I could have defeated you!

oh. wait. CHOPPED in two bitches.

KateJune 3, 2006 2:09 AM

Dude - that part was incredibly harsh. The audience seemed stunned. Being hung up and cut in two is not the coolest of kung-fu deaths.

Oh - get back to work

mathewJune 3, 2006 2:13 AM

If I knew how to I would mod these posts for NOT BEING ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE FILM I REVIEWED, you naughty monkeys.

YTSLJune 3, 2006 10:00 PM

Much as I like for the late Lo Lieh to have hailed from Malaysia, he was, in fact, from Indonesia.

(So, Matthew, does that remark count as being (somewhat) about the movie you reviewed? ;b)