Thursday, December 11, 2014

Showdown At The Equator (Guo Jiang Long Du Chuang Hu Xue, 1978)

What's happening fight film fans? Hai! Karate returns with an obscure flick from the bins at your local supermarket, fresh and reviewed just for you! Today's flick? Showdown At The Equator, starring Lo Lieh and Nora Miao!! The cast also includes veteran actors like Bruce Leung Siu-Leung, Fung Ngai and Tong Tin-Hei. This flick was made by the Dragon Nation Film Company(catchy title) and directed by Gwan Jing-Leung, a journeyman actor and action director. Let's get down to the gritty of this picture...

Showdown At The Equator starts out with a heavy credit montage. If the theme song seems familiar, it is - it's Issac Hayes' hit song 'Run Fay Run' from the soundtrack to his movie Three Tough Guys. And once more, we have a kung-fu flick that liberally 'borrows' soul and R&B classics to supplement the score. We get past that and find ourselves witnessing a guy getting thoroughly beat down by a gang before being iced. We then jump to see Chen Chung(Yiu Ping)being told about the incident by his daughter,Chen Wan(Miao) in their restaurant. Soon after, a gang comes in to demand 'protection money.' When Chung refuses, the gang demolishes the restaurant and beats him down in the process. They get help from a drunkard, Yu Wang(Larry Lee Gam-Kwan)who they offer a job to. Now to this point, we don't know WHERE the hell this place is. From the looks of things seen later on, it just might be somewhere in Thailand. But we then get to meet Li Shung(Leung Siu-Leung), a regular dude who shares his home with his mom, has some real fighting skill...and works as an undercover informant in the gang for the police. It turns out that Yu Wang has these money stacks that he just gives away if he's not getting into fights. He eventually links up with the gang, which breaks Chen Wan's heart since she has grown fond of him. BUT...he's got his own reason for joining. And that reason is Steven(Lieh) who runs the gang with a critical eye. All of this leads to the climactic(meh)showdown that will settle things once and for all...

Showdown At The not a good film. Yeah, there's a bunch of fighting. Fighting that can get into video-game mode at times(if you see it, you'll be perplexed by the cast-off European beer hall brawlers near the end of the film that Yu Wang has to face). Nora Miao is essentially a pretty face here that helps move the flick along in parts. Lo Lieh is in this movie sparingly as well, and while he's got that 70's movie villain swag down to the double knit suits, it's just not enough. Add in footage of a soccer match that no one expected(I mean, you can tell they jumped a turnstile), an uneven plot and you've got a poor movie. When your film only rocks with two R&B hits...when you've got to believe that a drunk can just pop up with stacks of dough and no one asks where or how... when most of the baddies are either bald or are really bad at going to the dentist... I can only really recommend this for kung-fu film devotees who won't mind 90 minutes of meh. True story.

RATING: 1 OUT OF 5 DRAGON PUNCHES *special shoutout to for imagery!!*

No comments:

Post a Comment