Monday, June 17, 2013

Wuxia Pan film review: The Bells of Death (Shaw Bros)

The Bells of Death 1969 Shaw Brothers

I didn’t realize it until my Flesh Trade co-author Edward Morris pointed it out but the title is a lit reference. I am not sure that is the case, it seems to be directly a reference to events in the story. In many ways this movie is a straight kung fu revenge movie , the main character’s family is murdered including his mother who wore a bracelet with several tiny bells on it. After he finds a master to teach him kungfu he honors his mother’s memory by wearing her bells. Hence the title.

It is that simple, but if you like shaw movies you’ll dig this simple film. Great fights that are well staged to maximize suspense. Is it classic Shaw borthers? No, but for the die-hards it is entertaining enough.

1 comment:

cherna bog said...

I disagree in that this film is just simply entertaining. I found it by pure chance. But I'm glad I watched it, 'cause in my opinion its visual style is bold and atractive. And also the fights are way more clever than the average kung-fu movies where the characters usually beat the shit out of each other to death. Besides, the first part of the film has very interesting similarities with Quentin Tarantino's Unglorious Basterds.