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Shaolin Drunken Monk 
Written by: on July 22nd, 2004
10 faces of Sonny Chiba The Shaolin Drunken Monk
Theatrical Release Date: Hong Kong, 1983
Director: Chan Hung Au
Cast: Gordon Liu, Eagle Han

DVD Released: March 20th, 2001
Approximate Running Time: 84 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 4.3 Pan and Scan
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
DVD Release: Tai Seng
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $14.95

Synopsis: Two kung fu hopefuls fulfill their lust for Revenge; retribution for a masters death for one and a lost appendage for the other. Between the threshold of Good and Evil a woman stands on the crossroads. The only scene worth mentioning is when the master teaches his student Lao Chung (Gordon Liu) proper Drunken Fighting form. The majority of the movie feels like filler as you await the next kung fu action scene. Although this can sometimes be enough for most martial arts movies, it’s a complete waste for an actor such as Gordon. This story had all the potential yet couldn’t deliver the goods.

Kill Bill (Volume 1 and 2), Return of the Master Killer, and He Has Nothing But Kung Fu have brought to my attention how stellar and memorable Gordon Liu’s performances are. Even The Shaolin Drunken Monk, his acting is above par. However, The Shaolin Drunken Monk’s story and dialog doesn’t hold a candle. It’s not too much of a surprise that director Chan Hung Au has but one other movie under his belt.

The DVD:

The film is cropped (Pan and Scan) and the audio dub is adequate. There is an informative audio commentary track by Hong Kong film expert Ric Meyers from Inside Kung Fu Magazine. The best part of the DVD was when it was over. Still in shock, I thought that Gordon could turn this movie to gold with his Midas touch. Yet, even he couldn’t save this sinking ship.

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