This is another Tai Seng Entertainment’s attempt of bringing a Hong Kong TV series to the Western Market. The Original 30 episode (at 45 minutes apiece) series was 22.5 hours long (1350 minutes) and it was edited into two movies. Fist of Fury (120 minutes) and the prequel Fist of Fury Sworn Revenge (220 minutes). I have not watched these in about ten years and I still enjoyed them. Donnie Yen is playing the role of Chen Zhen a fictional character made famous by Bruce Lee in the Fist of Fury (1972). Donnie Yen is not the only actor to play this role, Jet Li played Chen Zhen in Fist of Legend (1994). This TV series has a follow up movie also starring Donnie Yen Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen (2010). I couldn’t find any decent pictures on the internet so I had to take screen shots from my computer.
The quick premises behind this movie is starting at the beginning of Chen Zhen living in his village before they are forced out by bandits and they move to Shanghai to make a living. Chen Zhen is forced to make difficult decisions in order to survive the harsh realities of city life. He gets in trouble with police, local gangs and even the Ching-mou School of which he is a student in the Original Fist of Fury (1972). It helps show how Chen Zhen becomes the man that most everyone is already familiar with. The action is nice but unfortunately there isn’t enough long shots of the martial arts. It is particularly bad since Donnie Yen and Bau Hei Jing are both top notch martial artists. Lots of different camera angles brought at you rapidly takes away the fluid motion and power of the fight scenes. The acting is very good with many veteran of CTV and ATV serials appearing in the show. I enjoyed Hung Yan-yan’s role as a villain. He is a very versatile actor.
Donnie Yen (Iron Monkey, Once Upon a Time in China II, Hero)plays Chen Zhen
Eddi Ko (The Avenging Eagle, The Postman Fights Back, The East is Red, Bride with White Hair II, Rumble in the Bronx)as Kok Yuen-gap the head teacher of the Ching-mou School
Berg Ng(Infernal Affairs, The Grand Master) as Lau Chan-shing eldest student of Ching-mou School.
Bau Hei Jing (Fearless) as the only female student of Ching-mou School. Her brother is the award winning cinematographer Peter Pau
Eric Wan as Choi Hok-fu the son of Choi Luk-kan
Lau Chi-wing as Choi Luk-kan the Boss of the Green Gang
Hung Yan-yan (God of Gamblers, Once Upon a Time in China I-V, New Dragon Gate Inn, The Blade) as Hung Fei
Directed by Benny Chan
The Tai Seng version does offer a commentary featuring Bey Logan and Donnie Yen which is very enjoyable. Overall it is worth watching and some day I’d like to see an unabridged version of the series.
HK Cinema review
Love HK Film review