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The Supreme Swordsman and The Sword Of Swords DVD Reviews

 

“The Supreme Swordsman” is easily the best Hong Kong Connection release while “The Sword Of Swords” suffers from pacing and story issues.

“The Supreme Swordsman” plot: Qin Wu Xin is a murderous swordman whose goal is to kill famous swordsman and take their swords. We learn that he has aquired 99 swords and is looking to get the 100th sword from the Supereme Swordsman. After entering in a battle with the Supreme Swordsman, however, Qin is defeated and embarassed by him. Looking to get a new sword to contend with him, Qin finds the legendary Cold Eagle sword owned by a blacksmith. Qin kills the blacksmith, but little does he know that his son (Yan Bei) has been training and is looking to fight Qin himself.

While the story is very basic, “The Supereme Swordsman” is hands down the most entertaining Shaw Brothers Funimation release. Why you ask? Two reasons:

  1. The swordfights. You needn’t look any further than the climactic fight between  Qin and Yan to see that the action here is top notch.
  2. The bizarre. One of the most entertaining aspects of the Shaw Brothers films is the flat-out odd moments (of which this film has many). Viewers can expect to see everything from flying coffins and random comedic elements to goofy sped up fights and amusing over-the-top martial arts moves. The movie is worth watching for these moments alone.

“The Sword Of Swords” plot: An aging warrior (who has been assigned to wield a special magic sword to protect the country) decides to put on a contest in which the winner would wield the famed sword. When the kind hearted Lin wins the contest, however, the devious and hateful Fang decides to steal it in order to use it for his own selfish purposes. Naturally, the rest of the film is a battle for the sword.

The story of “The Sword Of Swords” is, quite literally, a mess. Aside from a thrilling opening half hour and a few random sword fights, the pacing painfully slow and the story is overly drawn out. It doesn’t help that virtually all of the character’s actions are puzzling. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times the characters let Fang go when they could have stopped him once and for all. Additionally, the “heroic” Lin is one of the worst heroes I’ve ever seen. Not only is he easily outwitted, but he does the worst job of protecting people. Heck, he even gets blinded because he’s so incompetent.

Summary: Check out “The Supreme Swordsman” and skip “The Sword Of Swords.”

Video/Audio:

The widescreen picture quality for both films is as sharp as can be. I cannot praise the restoration work for these Shaw Brothers films enough.

“The Sword Of Swords” contains Mandarin Mono and English Mono audio tracks. The English dub is so-so. Some of the acting is fine and some of it is laughable. The Mandarin track is a little scratchy, but it’s better than the English track. Oddly enough, “Supreme Swordsman” only has a Mandarin Mono track which is a bit scratchy as well. I am rather puzzled as to why there wasn’t an English dub track here.

Extras for both discs include trailers for the Hong Kong Connection series, “Robogeisha,” “Hana,” “Ichi,” “Kamui Gaiden,” “Mushi-Shi,” “Ghost Train,” “Daytime Drinking,” and “Love And Honor.”

July 30, 2011 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , , ,

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