Shaolin Vs. Wu Tang (HK 1981)

Rating: ***
Review Date: 10/3/99
Alternate Title: Shaolin Temple 2
Director: Gordon Liu (Liu Chia Hui)
Cast: Gordon Liu (Liu Chia Hui), Adam Cheng, Wang Lung

There is much confusion surrounding this film, and none of the references I have seem to agree on anything, so I just picked the information that appeared most accurate based on my own knowledge. A treacherous and crafty Ching lord (Wang Lung) wants to learn Shaolin fist and Wu Tang swordplay, so he puts into motion a plan to turn the two schools against each other. The result is that two friends from the opposing schools (Gordon Liu and Adam Cheng) end up having to fight each other. Despite a shaky and disjointed beginning, the film really picks up about halfway through when the story is abandoned in favor of non-stop kung fu carnage. Fantastic kung fu and swordplay abound, and the film features one of the most unique training sequences I've seen (a warden teaches a prisoner kung fu on the sly). Gordon Liu returns with his famous warrior monk persona from "36th Chamber Of Shaolin" (1978), and many of the training sequences are reminiscent of that film. I've also read that this film was made by Liu in direct response to his displeasure with the humorous treatment of "Return To The 36th Chamber" (1980).