The Deadly Breaking Sword (1979) torrent download

The Deadly Breaking Sword

1979

Action / Comedy

6.5

Synopsis

Warrior Tuan Changqing (Ti Lung) meets courtesan Liu Yinxi (Shih Szu) in a small town. Liu pleads Tuan to kill underworld master Guo Tiansheng (Ku Feng), known as the "Killer Doctor", in oder to avenge the death of her fiance. Tuan and casino security guard Xiao Dao (Alexander Fu Sheng) breaks into Guo's household and triggering the battle of good against evil.

Director

Sun Chung

Cast

Ti Lung
as Tuan Changqing, Deadly Breaking Sword
Alexander Fu Sheng
as Xiao Dao, the Little Dagger
Shih Szu
as Liu Yinxu
Ku Feng
as Dr Guo Tiansheng/Killer Doctor
Michael Chan
as Lian San, Throat Piercing Halberd
Lily Li Li-Li
as Luo Jinhua
Shum Lo
as Boss Luo

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by BrianDanaCamp N/A

THE DEADLY BREAKING SWORD – change-of-pace HK swordplay drama

THE DEADLY BREAKING SWORD (1979) is a lavish costume drama with swordplay and kung fu made at the Shaw Bros. studio in Hong Kong. It was directed by Sun Chung and stars Ti Lung and Alexander Fu Sheng, both of whom had teamed up the year before to star in the same director's AVENGING EAGLE (also reviewed on this site). Although there are plenty of fight scenes, which tend to be short and exciting but not terribly intricate, this film is less about martial arts than about the interplay between six major characters and the way they play out their different agendas with one set of characters manipulating the others.

The two heroes, Tuan Changqing (Ti Lung) and Xiao Dao--"Little Dagger"-- (Fu Sheng), handle most of the fighting chores and set out to protect the women in the film from various wrongdoers. However, as strong and fearless as they are, they're the ones most easily manipulated. Lovely Jinhua Luo (Lily Li) wants Xiao Dao to remain at her gambling den where he's employed as a bouncer in order to pay off gambling debts and contrives to keep him in debt so that he'll always be at her side. The beautiful courtesan, Liu Yinxu (Shih Szu), newly arrived at Lixiang Brothel, has a hidden motive that gradually becomes clear as she uses her wiles to work her charms on both heroes and get them to do her bidding. Also on hand is the upstanding Dr. Guo (Ku Feng) who, curiously, keeps a band of rowdy fighters on hand as "hangers-on" (two of whom are played by kung fu regulars Yuen Wah and Eddy Ko) and keeps under wraps a secret patient, Lian San (Chan Wai Man), a halberd fighter who'd been badly wounded in a duel at the beginning of the film with Master Tuan.

When all is said and done, the reason behind all the intrigue is less interesting than the build-up to it, resulting in a dramatically disappointing resolution. Still, the characters are all compelling and wonderfully acted by a Shaw Bros. cast that's as solid as you're likely to find in that era. Fu Sheng plays quite a comical character whose addiction to gambling and need to store up money temper his heroism somewhat. Early on he has a game of dominoes with the gambling den's manager to determine whether he walks away from the debt or stays on as a bouncer. In the middle of it, three extortionists come bounding in for their protection fees and he indignantly fights them off so he can concentrate on his game. When one jumps at him with monkey-style kung fu he responds in the same fashion, confusing his opponent. It's a clever and funny scene and is followed by several similar confrontations throughout the film.

The real surprise here is Shih Szu as the beautiful new arrival at Lixiang Brothel (next door to the gambling den). This actress started out at Shaw Bros. playing spunky fighting girls in the early 1970s (THE LADY HERMIT, THE RESCUE), but at this point was doing supporting roles. Liu Yinxu is a far cry from her earlier roles and is one that would normally have gone to Ching Li or any number of Shaw Bros. actresses who specialized in more showy, glamorous roles. She is nonetheless quite engaging as she flatters and manipulates the men with all the arts of the courtesan, but she also has a couple of powerful emotional scenes, particularly one with Ti Lung, that she pulls off at least as well as the other actresses at the studio would have. Kara Hui Ying Hung (MY YOUNG AUNTIE, LADY IS THE BOSS) plays Miss Liu's maid. Interestingly, along with Lily Li, that makes three fighting femmes in one film and yet neither lifts a finger to fight. Which is okay because, quite simply, the film isn't about the fighting, it's about the characters.

The production looks very sumptuous, having been filmed almost entirely on spacious and ornate Shaw Bros. sets, with only one outdoors scene (a furious horse ride) filmed on location. It's not the best swordplay film we've seen out of Shaw Bros., but it represents a nice change of pace for the cast and a welcome break from the more intense Chang Cheh martial arts extravaganzas and the more formal, overplotted all-star Chor Yuen swordplay dramas.

Reviewed by ChungMo 7 /10

Drama heavy swordsman story

Similar to other films from director Sun Chung, "Deadly Breaking Sword" features powerful martial artists who exist outside of the normal rules of society. This one, however, is different in that none of the characters are classic heroes. Quite the opposite.

Ti Lung, in a change of pace, plays an arrogant master swordsman who has been traveling around and setting up death duels with the best martial artists. HIs kink is that he comes prepared with a coffin for his opponents and he kills them by breaking off one inch of his sword in their bodies, hence the title. Nice. Fu Sheng plays his stock rascal, a petty thief and compulsive gambler who is indentured to a gambling house by his losses. Somehow he's also a master martial artist and he travels with a stick that has a hidden knife. The two are brought together by a courtesan who is plotting revenge against the mysterious "Killer Doctor".

There's plot complications and more talk then expected in this type of film but that doesn't take away from the action when it comes. The fight scenes with Ti Lung are all excellent especially when he is pitted against the halberd master at the beginning and the climax. Some of Fu Sheng's scenes are not as good with some fights very clumsy and mistimed but he's charming as usual so that sort of makes up for it. Sun Chung's direction is restrained but he still picks some great shots for the fight scenes. While more story driven then other Shaw martial art films, it suffers since none of the main characters are likable or interesting enough to overcome their bad behavior.

Great? No but a good film for light viewing.

Reviewed by simonize-1 8 /10

TI LUNG - a change of pace - in an actioner with a misogynistic twist, and KU FENG relegated to a secondary role

THE DEADLY BREAKING SWORD stands apart from other Shaw Bros. productions starring TI LUNG in making him an unsympathetic, even an unlikeable character. The more SB films one sees, the more rewarding it can be as you see how the filmmakers would attempt to move beyond the genre formulas, even though they used the same actors and production crews.

His role as TUAN CHANGQING, the Deadly Breaking Sword, puts him at odds with the rest of the martial world. He is an aberration of his famous heroic roles, eg. THE SENTIMENTAL SWORDSMAN cycle: he is no longer a protector of the weak, and the old, nor is he a defender of helpless women (though one might argue, there are no so called helpless women in this story).

He looks ahead to the likes of FRANKIE CHAN's nobleman in THE PRODIGAL SON and Donnie Yen's General in the superior ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA II. A superior fighter who provokes less fighters into mortal combat; a sadist who not only provides his quarry a coffin but who also relishes detailing his deadly breaking sword technique.

The film cleverly begins with a duel with LIAN SAN (WAI-MAN CHAN) whose own reputation rests with his Throat-Piercing Halberd. The two fighters are well matched, and both sustain serious wounds. The contest ends with LIAN's flight to safety.

LIAN's miraculous recovery is brought about by GUO TIANSHENG (KU FENG). GUO hides behind a facade he has skilfully created in which he is a warm, compassionate and peace loving man. He has an ulterior motive for saving LIAN's life.

The catalyst for the ensuing action is LIU JINHUA, a successful prostitute who comes to town, and hopes to enlist TUAN's services to kill GUO, whom she believes betrayed her brother years ago.

Add to this potentially confusing mix, FU SHENG playing his patented scoundrel, except this time, he is too blind to comprehend that the beautiful LUO JINHUA (LILY LI) is totally in love with him. XIAO DAO (FU) spends most of the film trying to get out of his indentured status. His need for quick, ready cash sets him on a collision course with both TUAN and GUO (aka THE KILLER DOCTOR).

There are several scenes where the key characters confront one another: in one, the smooth, sly GUO easily deceives TUAN; in another, TUAN accuses LIU of lying to him; in others, TUAN, still fooled by the KILLER DOCTOR, attempts to stop XIAO (FU SHENG) from taking on the mission of eliminating the Doctor - for money, and then there is the drastic course of action that FU SHENG takes when he fathoms what LILY LI has been doing.

There is a lot of action, well up to the usual house standards, and well staged too. But what stayed with me was TI LUNG's character TUAN CHANGQING, who is every bit the hypocrite that the good DOCTOR GUO is. It's a great scene when TUAN sitting down with XIAO tells him how wonderful he is as a fighter, and if he only had principles...

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