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Jet Li Double Feature: The Legend Of Fong Sai-Yuk 1 and 2 Blu-ray Review

Stay for the action but not much else.

Another martial arts two-pack is hitting shelves with the Jet Li Double Feature: The Legend Of Fong Sai-Yuk 1 and 2.

1993’s “The Legend Of Fong Sai-Yuk” (AKA “The Legend” or “Fong Sai-Yuk”) revolves around the titular skilled, bold, protective and sometimes goofy martial artist as he falls in love with Ting-Ting, discovers that his father is a member of a group that rebels against the Emperor (Red Flower Society), and fights against the villainous Governor.

Story wise, “The Legend Of Fong Sai-Yuk” is a tonally weird martial arts film based on the folk tale hero in which screwball shenanigans (mistaken identity, misunderstandings and coincidences) undercut the dramatic elements. The focus on Fong’s family (and Ting-Ting’s family) is a bit of a unique angle though as most martial arts films aren’t family affairs. In fact, ‘Fong’ is at its best when Fong (played by a more lighthearted Jet Li) and his mother Miu (played by the scene stealing Josephine Siao) are on screen together.

Given that this film is directed by Corey Yuen, you can expect plenty of fast-paced action here. Highlights include a fight on the shoulders of people, a one v one crouching under floor boards, and Jet Li with a rope. It can be quite cartoony at times, but the entertainment value is high. 

Corey Yuen returned to direct the sequel “The Legend Of Fong Sai-Yuk 2” (AKA “The Legend 2” or “Fong Sai-Yuk 2”). In this entry, Fong and Ting-Ting are now members of the Red Flower Society which is now being led by Chan Ka-Lok (who is secretly an heir to the throne). Chan’s right hand man Yu Chun-Hoi is the power hungry villain this time who wishes to lead the group. Elsewhere in the plot there is a storyline involving a box containing the truth about Chan that is in the possession of a Viceroy and his daughter (who has feelings for Fong). Of course, Fong’s mother and Ting-Ting also play into the story as well. 

“Fong Sai-Yuk 2” is a sadly inferior sequel that suffers from a clunky plot that also tries to mimic the first film at times ala the martial arts tournament and another love interest. The film also doubles down on the cartoony comedy complete with over-the-top sweating and a chicken being nerve blocked (don’t ask). The only saving grace this time around are 4 incredible action sequences involving a blindfold sword fight, a fireworks fight, a battle on rafts, and a ridiculous climactic duel that involves stacked wood and a rope attached to Fong’s mother.


Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. how does it look? While upgrades from DVDs, these fuzzy transfers look like rush jobs.

Audio tracks: Cantonese Mono and English Stereo. How do they sound? The original language Cantonese tracks are lower quality while the English Stereo tracks have a lot more depth (especially with the action).

* Theatrical trailers for both films
* Commentary on the first film by author Chris Poggiali and Frankie Balboa.
* 2 separate interviews with director Corey Yuen and writer Jeff Lau.


March 15, 2023 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , , ,

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