Film Review: Clan of the White Lotus (1980) by Lo Lieh

Though it ought to most likely be the heroes that achieve the viewers’s favor, there are a couple of notable exceptions when a villain was so memorable, his or her enchantment alongside generated sufficient curiosity to provide a sequel or, on the final, a really loyal fan cult. A kind of characters is Pai Mei, performed by actor-director Lo Lieh, who was one of many fundamental causes for the industrial success of “Executioners from Shaolin”, making the producers at Shaw Brothers studios remorse they killed him off in that characteristic. Nevertheless, it was finally determined to create a follow-up, this time with the brother of Pai Mei, White Lotus, avenging the dying of his sibling and exterminating any stays of the Shaolin order, as soon as and for all. With the intention to persuade Lo Lieh to take what was primarily the identical position yet one more time, he was additionally in command of directing the film, with skilled choreographer Lau Kar Leung answerable for the motion scenes.

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As talked about earlier than, Pai Mai, a Taoist grasp, has been defeated by Man Ting Hung (Gordon Liu) and his brother-in-law Wu Ah Biu (King Chu Lee), who mixed their preventing strategies to win the battle and kill their enemy. Nevertheless, after some time, with the temple of the Shaolin destroyed and lots of of their disciples, together with Biu, in jail, their former enemy reappears, this time backed by a decree of the emperor on the destiny of revolutionary components such because the Shaolin order. White Locus (Lo Lieh), brother of Pai Mei, takes the chance to train his revenge, by killing Biu in an ambush in addition to Hung’s sister-in-law, with all of them being unable to cease the seemingly unbeatable grasp of martial arts.

By way of sheer luck, Hung manages to flee along with his sister, who’s pregnant with Biu’s and her child. Taking refuge with a distant relative who works in a manufacturing facility manufacturing paper dolls and different wares, the younger man begins planning a counter-attack, with little or no success, as even the mix of his and the strategy of his deceased relative doesn’t work towards White Locus. With the intention to have an opportunity towards the lethal preventing model of his opponent, he realizes he should consider options, mend his methods and be taught extra, and provide you with a brand new technique to make use of in battle.

Whereas his first try at directing was not met with loads of enthusiasm, the identical can’t be mentioned for Lo Lieh’s work in “Clan of the White Locus”. Though its construction is a bit repetitive, there’s a sure technique at work, with Gordon Lau’s character not solely studying to broaden his information on preventing and method, but in addition permitting others to fix his methods or in a manner be extra humble and fewer rash in his choices. The drama of discovering the boldness and being crushed time and time once more, is highlighted by way of points resembling Eddie Wang’s charming rating, however, most significantly, the performances, with Gordon Lau and Lo Lieh enjoying opposing characters, and particularly the latter having clearly loads of enjoyable enjoying somebody whose options have now turn out to be half of popular culture due to Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Invoice Vol. 2”.

Aside from the performing and the course, there’s, in fact, the motion. Among the many many initiatives produced by Shaw Brothers, “Clan of the White Locus” is definitely well-known for its battle scenes. Whereas there’s a distinct quantity of goofiness concerned, particularly within the coaching workout routines of Gordon Lau’s characters who see him studying “ladies kung fu” and the artwork of acupuncture, points resembling fluidity and expression are equally necessary, turning every of the confrontations between Hung and White Lotus in a mini-drama all by itself.

In conclusion, “Clan of the White Locus” is an entertaining martial-arts-feature, with a few of the greatest individuals of the style behind and in entrance of the digital camera. Lo Lieh’s film is a illustration of the sort of cinema Shaw Brothers grew to become well-known for, and a purpose why their many motion pictures have turn out to be half of popular culture.



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