Little Dragon Maiden (1983)

Adapted from Louis Cha’s novel The Return of the Condor Heroes. It is considered an unofficial sequel to the Brave Archer series of films by Shaw Brothers. Like all of the Shaw Brothers adaptations of the Condor series they try to fit as many of the characters from the books as possible into the film even if it is only for a moment.  The flurry of faces that all seem to be important only to disappear and never to be seen again. However it is not nearly as bad as it was in Brave Archer.

Hua Shan did a descent enough job trying to fit most of an entire novel into a single movie.  Lo Lieh was great as Ouyang Feng, probably one of my favorite characters in the story. The love story between Yang Guo and The Dragon Maiden was okay, but not nearly as heart wrenching as I’ve seen in other movies or t.v. dramas. Li Mochou was only an annoyance rather than a serious threat as she should have been. All in all it was a good enough adaptation.  It could have been much better but my main complaint is the last 20 minutes of the film.  It was rushed, seriously rushed and the ending left me feeling that the story was unresolved.  That and the condor. The condor was absolute atrocious.

The action choreography was very well done and I certainly enjoyed it.  Some of the moves that the two main characters perform from the Nine Yin Manual could have been more spectacular but that is just being picky.

Overall it is a fun movie to watch, especially if you are a fan of the Condor Hero trilogy. Little Dragon Maiden is available to watch on Amazon Prime.

LDM 2

LDM 3

Hua Shan, Director
Benz Kong To-Hoi, Action Director
Lau Chi-Ho, Action Director

Leslie Cheung (The Bride with White Hair, Ashes of Time, A Chinese Ghost Story) as Yang Guo / Yang Kang
Yung Jing-Jing (Buddha’s Palm, Holy Flame of the Martial World, ) as Xiaolongnü a.k.a. The Dragon Maiden
Chen Kuan-tai (The Iron Bodyguard, The Flying Guillotine, White Vengeance) as Guo Jing
Leanne Liu (White Hair Devil Lady, The Lady Assassin, Return of the Bastard Swordsman) as Huang Rong, wife of Guo Jing
Tanny Tien (The Master Sword, Thirty-Six Sword Guards) as Li Mochou, Dragon Maiden’s Elder Martial Sister
Lung Tien-hsiang (The Death Duel, The Brave Archer and His Mate, The Hidden Power of the Dragon Sabre) as Jinlun Fawang, the Mongolian Lama
Ku Kuan-chung (The Spiritual Boxer, Death Duel, The Duel of the Century) as Huodu
Ku Feng (The Twin Swords, Princess Iron Fan, Legend of the Drunken Tiger) as Hong Qigong, Chief of the Beggars Sect.
Lo Lieh (Trilogy of Swordsmanship, Killer Clans, Crazy Shaolin Disciples) as Ouyang Feng, the crazy old guy who uses Toad Style. One of the top 5 best martial artists.
Sun Chien (The Five Venoms, Ten Tigers of Kwangtung, Disciples of the 36th Chamber) as Qiu Qianren, Gongsun Zhi’s wife
Hung San-nam (Masked Avengers, Five Element Ninjas, The Hidden Power of the Dragon Sabre) as Yin Zhiping,  senior member of Quanzhen, defiles Xiaolongnü (Dragon Maiden)
Wong Lik (The Lost Swordship, Ten Tigers of Kwangtung, House of Traps) as Zhao Zhijing, the most senior of all Quanzhen members
Lai Yin-san (The Supreme Swordsman, Return of the Bastard Swordsman) as Cheng Ying, Lu Zhanyuan’s niece
Chan Lau (The Heroic Ones, The 14 Amazons, The Fighting Dragon) as Huang Yaoshi,  one of the Five Greats of the wulin, Huang Rong’s father
Eddy Ko Hung (All Men Are Brothers, The Duel of the Century, Return of the Bastard Swordsman) as Da’erba, Tibetan monk and Jinlun’s second apprentice.

Wild Ream review

LDM 4

The condor was ridiculous and ruined the end of the film for me

Trivia: Yung Jing-Jing who played the Dragon maiden was married to Lau Kar-leung from 1984 until his death in 2013.

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