Guan Feng-yi (Alexander Fu Sheng) and Huang Han (Chi Kuan-chun) are a yin-yang of heroes. Where Guan Feng-yi is an impulsive young man ready to fight at any time, Huang Han is dignified and given to deep thought. The Chinese title — The Hung Boxing Kid — makes more sense as this isn’t really a shaolin movie. It really resembles two other movies that Chang Cheh directed for Shaw Brothers, The Boxer from Shantung and The Chinatown Kid.
Together, the heroes protect a textile mill from a rival mill owned by a ruthless Manchurian lord. However, the lure of money and power may be too much for one of our leads. While Guan Feng-yi once only wanted shoes for his feet, he soon learns that the world can pay him so much more.
The really crazy thing about this movie is how many Italian movies it takes its soundtrack from. There’s Gianni Ferrio’s “Crescendo Trionfale,” “Step by Step,” “Anonima Assassini” from La Poliziotta; Claudio Mattone’s “Celio in Amore,” “Tema di Nico, pt. 4,” “Arioso,” “Cugini Carnali” and “Tema di Nico” from Cugini Carnali; and Ennio Morricone’s “Alone in the Night” and “Anger and Sorrow” from Death Rides a Horse.
The 88 Films release of Disciples of Shaolin has two sets of audio commentary, one by critic and author Samm Deighan and the other by Mike Leeder and Arne Venema. There’s also an interview with Jamie Luk, a trailer and the first run will have a slipcase, booklet and poster. It’s a gorgeous package and release. You can get a copy from MVD or Diabolik DVD.