Building on the awesomeness that was Shawscope Volume 1, Arrow Video has released a second collection of films from Shaw Brothers, including several films from the final years of the studio. This is an incredible set, as you get 14 movies and so many hours of bonus features, including commentaries, features on each film and even a documentary series on the impact of the studio.
Nearly every movie has newly restored uncompressed Mandarin, Cantonese and English audio as well as newly translated English subtitles and optional hard-of-hearing subtitles for the English versions.
There ars high definition 1080p blu ray presentations of all fourteen films, including nine new 2K restorations by Arrow Films, as well as an illustrated 60-page collectors’ book featuring new writing by David Desser, Jonathan Clements, Lovely Jon and David West, plus cast and crew listings and notes on each film by Simon Abrams. Plus, you get new artwork by Mike Lee-Graham, Chris Malbon, Kagan McLeod, Colin Murdoch, “Kung Fu” Bob O’Brien, Lucas Peverill, Ilan Sheady, Tony Stella, Darren Wheeling and Jolyon Yates, hours of never-before-seen bonus features including several cast and crew interviews from the Frédéric Ambroisine Video Archive and two CDs of music from the De Wolfe Music library as heard in several of the films, exclusive to this collection.
I loved the first set so much — it’s been on repeat for days at a time — and I’m beyond pleased with this set, as it really gives you even more of the experience of Shaw Brothers. Seeing as how they made nearly a thousand movies, here’s hoping that there are many more of these sets in the future.
The films include (click on any of the links to see a full review of the movie):
Invincible Shaolin: The Venom Mob stars in the tale of General Pu (Lung-Wei Wang), who tries to destroy both the north and south Shaolin schools through trickery.
The Boxer’s Omen: One of the wildest movies of all time, a film in which more happens in the first ten minutes than every other movie I’ve watched this year put together. Worth the price of the entire set.
The 36th Chamber of Shaolin: Considered to be one of the greatest kung fu films and a turning point in the careers of star Gordon Lio and director Lau Kar-Leung, this is also known in the U.S.. as The Master Killer. It tells the story of San Te, a legendary Shaolin martial arts disciple who must train and ascend through each of the 36th chambers of the training school.
Return to the 36th Chamber: In this kind of, sort of sequel, Liu plays Chu Jen-chieh, a con man posing as a Shaolin monk who ends up actually becoming one.
Disciples of the 36th Chamber: Gordon Liu comes back to the role of San Te and mentors a younger monk who must learn to contain his ego and rage, Fong Sai-Yuk.
The Kid with the Golden Arm: Chang Cheh directs the Venom Mob in a story of martial arts masters, a shipment of gold, chicanery and a fighter who can break a sword with his bare hands.
Five Superfighters: When a martial arts master humbles another teacher and his four students, they must go on a spiritual quest to reclaim their fighting skills.
Mad Monkey Kung Fu: A street performer who throws candy to children was at one time the world’s greatest martial artist. Now, he tries to atone for a drunken mistake that cost him his family and his abilities.
Martial Arts of Shaolin: The only collaboration between film director Lau Kar-leung and actor Jet Li, this movie has Li playing Lin Zhi-ming, a young man training to become one of the best fighters in the Northern Shaolin school.
Mercenaries from Hong Kong: What if Show Brothers made Wild Geese? Watch all of this, because oh man, the last ten minutes have more action that every film that will come out next year.
Magnificent Ruffians: What good are martial arts in a world of guns? A lot, as it turns out, as four ruffians find one another and the joy of practicing combat.
Ten Tigers of Kwangtung: Two shadowy killers are wiping out the legendary Ten Tigers and their disciples in a movie that flashes back to their past and present. Will they have a future?
My Young Auntie: This aunt isn’t an old maid. Instead, she’s tougher than all of the jerks trying to take her estate away.
You can get this set from MVD.
You can also stream all of these movies on the Arrow player. Visit ARROW to start your 30-day free trial. Subscriptions are available for $4.99 monthly or $49.99 yearly. ARROW is available in the US, Canada, the UK and Ireland on the following Apps/devices: Roku (all Roku sticks, boxes, devices, etc), Apple TV & iOS devices, Android TV and mobile devices, Fire TV (all Amazon Fire TV Sticks, boxes, etc), and on all web browsers at https://www.arrow-player.com.