View Full Version : The Honor of Dong Fang Xu - an excellent motion picture

Chang Style Novice
02-24-2002, 08:05 PM
This is a repost of a post I made at a different, more general movie board. So, if anything seems out of place, just attribute it to the fact I wrote it for a less kungfuey audience. Austinites, I'll be returning this tape to Vulcan Video on Guadalupe thursday night. Look for it there.

Well, I rented a kungfu flick yesterday that Disney probably won't be getting their hands on: The Honor of Dong Fang Xu. This one is pretty peculiar in a number of ways - it's a pretty straight dramatic period piece without any physical comedy, it seems to actually use real kungfu styles (in particular, baguazhang), and it's not from Hongkong, but a production of the PRC. I'm not sure how old it is/ Presumably any PRC kungfu flick would be either pre-cultural revolution or enough post cultural revolution that they feel safe talking about actual martial kungfu. At any rate, I highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in kickflicks. The style of cinematography is radically different than the usual Shaw Bros. productions, and in a good way. Fight scenes are done in long takes, with the camera distant enough to capture both combatants head to toe. It has the look of being shot on higher quality film stock, and props, costumes, etc. are all better than I've come to expect. The martial art choreography is excellent, with movements and tactics clearly readable by the viewer, with a minimum of fantastic wuxia style wirework.

The story is pretty standard - an itenerant family of martial artists are bullied by a powerful school in the town in which they find themselves. By coincidence, the father meets an old man who is a legendary teacher from his home village, who teaches him an invincible technique. The feuding school shortly befriends the hero, just in time for a menacing foriegn martial artist (in this case, Russian) to come to town challenging everyone and intending to humiliate the local kung fu schools and china in general. The head of the school is assaulted to prevent him from defeating the Russian strongman. But, our hero steps in to save the day.

All very Fist of Legend/Chinese Connection -ish, except the hero isn't the historical Chang Zhen, but the mythical (I suppose) Dong Fang Xu.

Anyway, rent it if you see it where you am.

02-28-2002, 02:51 PM
I liked that one too. I think one of the reasons it may not have been picked up by one of the bigger video companies is because of the similarities w/ Chinese Connection. Have you checked out any other mainland stuff? Shaolin Temple 1,2,3? UNdaunted WuDang? Red Dragons of Shaolin is incredible

Chang Style Novice
03-01-2002, 07:38 AM
Nossir, I've never seen any of those. But I'll definitely keep my peepers peeled after a terrific experience like this.