Summary: A man studies kung fu at the Shaolin Temple to fight back against the oppressive Manchu government.
Countries: Hong KongLanguages: Mandarin
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The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978).
What? I watched an old movie and it wasn’t a Rifftrax? Damn straight I did. And I’m pretty glad I did, too, because this movie just rolls along at a decent pace. The dubbing is vile. The hairpieces are, uh, curious. And yet there is something compelling about this.
A young ethics student gets involved in a revolution gone wrong, and desiring the skills to revenge his father and friends, he travels to the Shaolin monastery where he desires to learn kung fu. For some slightly unknown reason, he does spend an entire year there before complaining that he isn’t learning kung fu – upon which he is promptly invited to start learning kung fu. Well, duh.
He also decides to start at the top chamber, where he is shamed into moving his sights one chamber lower. He spends quite a great deal of time sulking that he can’t do kung fu (or any of the associated skills required) but luckily he has a dream about fulfilling the task required and after that, well, there’s just no stopping him.
Eventually he returns home, avenges his father, and then returns to the temple where he is allowed to set up a chamber of kung fu where he can teach the skills to common folk to defend themselves.
This movie has taught me that I should start at the top rather than attempt to lay down a skill foundation first, definitely not ask for what I want so that I can complain about not having it later, and that everything wrong in my life will be fixed if I know kung fu.