These are films reviewed on the cult movie podcast Junk Food Dinner ( www.junkfooddinner.com/ ).
Master of the Flying Guillotine
A one-armed martial arts master is being stalked by an Imperial assassin, the master of two fighters (the Tibetan Lamas) who were killed in the previous film. When the One-Armed Boxer is invited to attend a martial arts tournament, his efforts to lay low are unsuccessful, and the assassin soon tracks him down with the help of his three subordinates competing in the tournament: a Thai boxer, a yoga master, and a kobojutsu user.
I got to experience this crazy and insanely entertaining martial arts film for my first time on the big screen in New York, with the star/writer/director Jimmy Wang Yu himself just three theater rows ahead of my father and I in the crowd. A fun Q&A, pictures, handshakes and autographs took place with this ultimate badass as well. It was quite an awesome event/day.
My pet peeve of seeing footage from previous films was probably present here, but I have not seen the previous films--and was unaware there was one--so I was unaffected by it. In retrospect, I should have guessed, but this film is so bananas, I was too busy gawking to think about it. If you want some great fight sequences, clever ones at that, and some interesting, over-the-top characters/martial artists, step right up. My favorite is the Indian assassin (probably played by a Chinese man in some unfortunate racial cross-casting) with the extending arms, a la Dhalsim (probably, in retrospect, the Street Fighter series was completely racist? I'm not going back to find out... wait "yoga flame"? Yeah, probably completely racist.…
Super 16 Autobahn Rubycon
Just last week I heard some joker (actually my boss and pal and founder of the company I work for) crediting William Friedkin with discovering Tangerine Dream for soundtrack music. Everyone should know it was actually Jimmy Wang Yu.
And that tournament scene is not too long, it's everything. Love this trash.
Things I loved about this: The music, which I've been informed is made up of tracks from bands like Neu and Kraftwerk. I need to listen to more of these bands immediately. The guillotine, which carries with it a sound effect that is not unlike that discordant sound that runs throughout Jean-Luc Godard's Masculin Feminin, which makes me think that movie could have used a scene with Jean-Pierre Leaud gets his head pulled off by a flying guillotine. And the guy with the extending arms.
Rating might go down if/when I see it again, not as the after-midnight last half of a kung fu triple bill, then again it might go up.
the one & only classic Master of the Flying Guillotine is exactly what i want in a martial arts film. badass right out the gate with a simple revenge story and almost non-stop incredible, off the wall fighting. watch this INCREDIBLE opening credits sequence with totally unlicensed music by NEU here :
RIGHT? RIGHT! the whole movie is like that. non-stop bonkers style awesomeness. this is a film where a blind guy with a long white beard and giant eyebrows walks into a room and declares he's going to kill every one armed man he finds. this is that kind of movie and it rules.
As far as really racist films go (Basil had to point out to me the racism, can't believe I was that blind), this movie has a lot of fun moments. In particular, the final battle between the one-armed boxer and the master of the flying guillotine is i-n-c-r-e-d-i-b-l-e. But the film takes too long to get to the action, and all of the suspense is drained out of the karate tournament as it's clear who is going to win each one, even though they're still pretty good fights.
I wish there wasn't all that racism though because a lot of the action itself is pretty inventive and great.
one of the BEST soundtracks in a movie ive ever heard. Tangerine Dream, Neu! and Kraftwerk, all completely unlicensed. stands high up there with 'Dangerous Encounter - 1st kind' for bootleg soundtracks.
great kung fu and special effects. very entertaining
Not nearly as elegant as the Shaw Brothers kung-fu films I've seen. (Is this a Shaw Brothers film, in fact? I've seen conflicting information.) What it lacks in structure and cohesion to the immensely satisfying syntax of this genre, however, it makes up for in zaniness. Extending arms, decapitations, xenophobia -- it's got a lot of fun, goofy stuff but there are genuine, unironic aesthetic pleasures to the best martial arts films that Flying Guillotine lacks. The world feels empty and sparsely populated, like in the bizarrely protracted tournament sequence; the choreography feels slower and less convincing, as if performers are waiting for the punch to duck. And the personalities of some of the Shaw Brothers regulars was missed.
Sat down to watch One Armed Boxer 2 and... hey, this is Master of the Flying Guillotine. I've been tricked into re-watching one of my favorite movies! Hooray!
If you like Kung-Fu and haven't seen MotFG, correct yourself. If you like Bloodsport, this is the main movie it cribbed from. If you've played Dhalsim in Street Fighter, he's in here.
One more note, the leitmotif for the Master of the Flying Guillotine is so dank and heavy and menacing. Gives me chills.
This film answers the question "what if someone made a live action film based on how I used to play with action figures when I was ten?" The answer: A cinematic masterpiece. 6/5 stars, an extra star for its awesome soundtrack.
I didn't blink an eye at the spotty image quality -- the version Fandor's streaming made like grindhouse Traffic with the unintentional blue tint on some shots / scenes, in addition to unfortunate scratches & frame jumps -- or the missed punches or even that one guy forced to pretend he was one-armed and no-headed as his head and arm were clearly bulging from his gi, but the swastika on the master's tunic never failed to distract me. (NB: I'm the kind of jerk that didn't realize the master wasn't the protagonist until 45 minutes into the film.) (You'd think the wanton decapitation of the bum would've immediately clued me in, but no.) (I also didn't realize this was a sequel…
Seriously though how has the assassin in this movie not been in a single Mortal Kombat yet?
No subtitles, OCCASIONALLY dubbed. That flying guillotine is pretty gruesome.
I was impressed that good-guy "The One-Armed Boxer" defeated the eponymous bad guy with strategy rather than untouchable kung fu superiority.
MotFG contains characters who might be the inspirations for Dhalsim and Chun Li of Street Fighter 2.
Pai Mei of Kill Bill fame looks an awful lot like the Master.
The good guys were all Chinese. Most of the bad guys were random foreigners: Thai, Japanese, Indian. Writer/director/star Jimmy Wang Yu might be a tad racist.
After his students are killed by the One Armed Boxer, a vengeful and blind Kung Fu expert travels to a village where a martial arts contest is being held and vows to behead every one armed man he comes across.
Good soundtrack and stunts, but the camera masking is pretty more and the sound effects a little ridiculous.
All the films I could find that QT uses as reference points in his films.
1-48 Reservoir Dogs (Django of…
This is an unranked list of my most high holiest of favorite movies. It is something continually tinkered with, and…