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Challenge of the Tiger
Dragon Bruce Lee / Gymkata Killer / Spezialkommando Feuervogel

Hong Kong 1980
produced by
Dick Randall, Bruce Le for Dragon Films
directed by Bruce Le, & uncredited Paolo Solvay (= Luigi Batzella)
starring Bruce Le, Richard Harrison, Nadiuska, Hwang Jang Lee, Brad Harris, May Hong, Tito Garcia, Kong To, Yang Sze (= Bolo Yeung), Joe Laufer, Dick Randall
written by Bruce Le, Poon Fan, music by Chow Fuk Leung

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Available on DVD !

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Because some secret formula is stolen by terrorists, the CIA calls its 2 top agents - martial arts expert Lung (Bruce Le) & womanizer Richard (Richard Harrison) - to Spain to retrieve it.

First, Richard & Lung try to get the formula from the terrorists in a bullring (it's Spain, there has got to be a bullring, hasn't there ?), where Lung has to fight a live bull using Kung Fu, but when that fails, Richard has to bed Maria (Nadiuska), the beautiful terrorist, to give Lung enough time to steal the formula from her appartment. Lung succeeds, and Maria is shot for her failure, while Richard is still in the bathtub.

Mission accomplished ... or is it.

Of course it isn't, otherwise the film would be over after about 20 minutes.

As a matter of fact, neither did Lung get the real formula, just a decoy, nor has Maria really died, it was just a charade.

Maria soon travels to Hong Kong, where she & her fellow terrorists (among them Brad Harris as her muscular bodyguard) plan to sell the formula to the highest bidder. But now not only the CIA is after her but also the Vietcong, led by comrade Yeng (Hwang Jang Lee).

After much to & fro, with the three fractions fighting each other, & comrade Yeng even killing many of his own men & women he thinks dispensable (among them Yang Sze), Lung & Richard somehow get a map to the terrorists' secret hideout, & attack, with Lung pretty much taking out everyone in his way, only to find out when he gets to the heads of the operation, that they have already been killed by comrade Yeng, who tries to make a getaway with the formula. But of course, Lung won't let him, & they engage in mortal combat. It all ends with a car, them both in it, going over a cliff & exploding.

Lung can make it out, comrade Yeng can't.

And Richard ? He has pretty much been watching everything from afar.

 


If my synopsis has led you to believe this is another one of these trashy espionage/martial arts films, you are of course right, & the film really is as silly & clichéd as my synopsis might suggest ... but that's only seeing half the picture. On the other hand, the film is, not despite but because of all its shortcomings, completely enjoyable - if you are game for such a kind of cheap thrills: The Bruce Le vs bull-fight is hilarious, Brad Harris is always fun to watch, especially when he's trying to do martial arts, and I haven't even talked about the topless slow motion tennis match yet, which is totally irrelevant to the plot but a hoot to watch. The funniest thing though is co-star Richard Harrison himself (who allegedly has directed the topless tennis match sequence), who clearly gives the impression of not taking any of the film seriously, as he turns in a rather careless performance, & when the action starts is often put out of action by a kick in the groin, or he watches from afar altogether.

No, it's not a martial arts milestone or Hong Kong classic, it's not even a good film (objectively speaking), but it's a real fun to watch, provided you are prepared to laugh.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD