Lady Of Steel (HK 1970)

Rating: ***
Review Date: 1/16/17
Cast: Cheng Pei Pei, Yueh Hua

A notorious bandit named Han Shi Xiong robs a caravan and kills everyone associated with it. Or so he thinks... A young girl manages to escape and is raised by a Buddhist priest who teaches her kung fu. Twenty years later, Fang Ying Qi (Cheng Pei Pei) strikes out on her own to seek vengeance against the man who murdered her family. Along the way, she makes friends with a rebel warrior named Qin Shang Yi (Yueh Hua), and together they uncover a traitorous plot led by the duplicitous Han.

It's a tried and true story that's been told over and over, but Cheng Pei Pei is delightful to watch and makes the journey worthwhile. She even takes on several clever disguises, which adds to the fun. Unfortunately, the action scenes are a bit soft and slow, but the film doesn't shy away from blood. Interestingly, the exchanges between Yueh Hua and Cheng Pei Pei are the weakest of the bunch, as if both performers were being overly cautious about not hurting each other. When they're on their own fighting hordes of stuntmen, they're much more aggressive and hard hitting. The cinematography is excellent and the sets and costumes are wonderful in the classic Shaw Brothers style. A good time overall for fans of girl fu.