Shaw Brothers Martial Arts FilmsThe Shaw Brothers made over 1000 films before they left the film industry in 1987 to concentrate on television production. They resumed film production in 2009. The Shaw Brothers are best known in the west for Shaw Brothers martial arts films. The Shaw Brothers included Runje, Runme, and Runde and Run Run Shaw. This article covers Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Films 1983.

Editors note: The Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Film Project is a work in progress.

Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Films 1982

Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Films 1984

The Lady Assassin (1983) [My nhân ke]

In The Lady Assassin (1983), a kidnapped girl from an elite family is saved by a trio of tavern owners and she slowly realizes they are not what they seem; uncovering their secret training as assassins, she joins them as they use their home base to exact treasure and revenge from those who would dare visit.

Director: Quang Dung Nguyen
Writer: Quang Dung Nguyen
Stars: Kim Dzung, Tang Thanh Ha, Thanh Hang

Portrait in Crystal (1983) [Shui jing ren]

In Portrait in Crystal (1983) several mysterious killings take place in the underworld and a war fighter is trying to find the culprit behind these murders.

Director: Shan Hua
Writers: Wengui Chen (as Wen-Kuei Chen), Nai Pin Tsai
Stars: Jason Piao Pai, Yu-Po Liu, Jung Wang
Stunt Coordinators: Ka-Sang Cheng, Chi Ming Wong
Action Coordinator: Te-Chiang Teng

The Weird Man (1983)

In The Weird Man (1983) a Taoist Priest Yu Ji (Cheng Tien-Chi) is a victim of Magistrate Xu Gong’s (Wong Lik) desire to kill General Sun Ce (Chiu Gwok) in a grab for power. Gong’s plans go awry, as Yu Ji’s spirit seeks revenge, after being publicly executed.

Director: Cheh Chang
Writer: Cheh Chang (screenplay)
Stars: Tien-Chi Cheng, Kuo Chao, Yu-Po Liu
Stunt Coordinators: Tien-Chi Cheng, Ke Chu

Bastard Swordsman (1983) [Tian can bian]

Hsu Shao-chiang stars as a veritable “Spider-Swordsman” – master of the “Silkworm Style” – in this eye-filling, mind-bending martial arts phantasmagorical, Bastard Swordsman (1983), which truly warrants the description: “unforgettable.”

Director: Chun-Ku Lu
Writers: Kuo-Yuan Chang (screenplay), Chun-Ku Lu (screenplay)
Stars: Norman Chu, Tony Liu, Jung Wang
Action Coordinator: Chun-Ku Lu

The Boxer’s Omen (1983)

In The Boxer’s Omen (1983) a man goes to Thailand to avenge his brother who was crippled in a fight with a corrupt Thai boxer, a he gets caught up in a web of fate, Buddhism and black magic.

Director: Chih-Hung Kuei
Writers: Chih-Hung Kuei (story), On Szeto (screenplay)
Stars: Phillip Ko, Shao-Yen Lin, Kar-Man Wai
Stunt Coordinators: Ke Chu, Yasuhiro Shikamura

Demon of the Lute (1983) [Liu zhi qin mo]

The lute demon Chin Mo has reappeared in the world to wreck havoc. Hsiao Feng-ling is ordered to find a special bow and arrow that can counter the demon.

Director: Tak-Cheung Tang (as Yi Sheng Lung)
Writers: Kuang Ni (story), Tak-Cheung Tang (as Lung Yi Sheng)
Stars: Kuang-Hung Chi, Ping-Ying Hou, Kara Wai
Stunt Coordinator: Te-Chiang Teng

Descendant of the Sun (1983) [Ri jie]

It’s American comicbook superhero Superman meets Greek demi-god Hercules wrapped in an old style martial art film by accredited director Chu Yuan. In Descendant Of The Sun, Shaw’s favorite “cute” good guy, Derek Yee, is a magic being born through solar energy by the benevolent King of the Gods. He is sent to Earth as a baby, found and raised by an old carpenter, possesses martial art superpowers and “green kryptonite” loses them during a solar eclipse. This is of course the time that an evil baby is sent by a rival immoral god. Descendant of the Sun (1983) includes guest star appearances and demon-paced martial arts action by Jackie Chan’s kung-fu classmates Yuan Pin and Yuen Hua compliment Chu’s early attempts with Toho Studio style optical effects.

Director: Yuen Chor (as Chu Yuan)
Writer: The Shaw Brothers Creative Group (screenplay)
Stars: Tung-Shing Yee, Cherie Chung, Fei Ai
Stunt Coordinator: Chia Tang

The Enchantress (1983) [Yao hun]

In The Enchantress (1983) Max Mok is the dashing young swordsman Feng Xiwu who arrives at a beautiful, but deadly location known as Moonlit Sky to investigate rumors of deaths and disappearances there. He comes to the defense of a beautiful young woman (Mary Jean Reimer Lau) playing a zither who warns him to leave. He refuses and is soon at the mercy of the girl’s mother, a woman long dead who haunts the place.She and her companions that included a group of Japanese samurai were all slain by Chinese swordsmen eighteen years ago. The ghost swore an oath of vengeance against the martial world and her Chinese husband, swordsman Lan Tianyu (Lau Wing), who betrayed her. When her daughter helps Xiwu to escape and come into the care of a Taoist priest (Lo Lieh), the ghost begins her assault on the martial world to destroy the descendants of those who wronged her. Tianyu unites with the Taoist priest and Shaolin monks to battle the ghost, but her power is too great and a spiritual master known as Purple Robe (Yueh Hua) is called upon, along with seven gods. Xiwu, Tianyu and the gods follow the ghost into the netherworld to put an end to her curse.

Director: Yuen Chor
Writer: Ying Wong (story)
Stars: Siu Chung Mok, Jing-Jing Yung, Chau-Wah Yim
Stunt Coordinators: Pei Chi Huang , Bun Yuen , Wah Yuen

 Holy Flame of the Martial World (1983) [Wu lin sheng huo jin]

In Holy Flame of the Martial World (1983) a brother and sister seek vengeance for the death of their parents.

Director: Chun-Ku Lu
Writers: Kwok-Yuen Cheung, Chun-Ku Lu
Stars: Leanne Lau, Siu Chung Mok, Jason Piao Pai
Stunt Coordinators: Phillip Chung-Fung Kwok, Tak Yuen

The Lady Is the Boss (1983) [Zhang men ren]

In The Lady Is the Boss (1983) a martial-arts master (Chia-Liang Liu) and the leader (Kara Hui) of his school battle gangsters.

The pre-eminent martial arts moviemaker Liu Chia-liang came up with the novel idea for this exciting and hilarious kung-fu clash between an old-fashioned kung-fu master and a hip and beautiful marketing wiz.

Director: Chia-Liang Liu
Writers: Pa-Ching Huang, Tai-Heng Li
Stars: Chia-Liang Liu, Kara Wai, Hou Hsiao
Stunt Coordinators: Hou Hsiao, King Chu Lee, Chia-Liang Liu

Little Dragon Maiden (1983) [Yang guo yu xiao long nu]

In Little Dragon Maiden (1983), Yang Kuo falls for the Dragon Maiden while learning the art of swordplay, but they are forbidden to marry as master and pupil.

With Hong Kong cinema’s new wave, high flying, martial arts action of the 1980’s, came a new wave of actors; teeny-bopper, canto-pop singer/stars with little or no martial arts background. However, when a film like Little Dragon Maiden intelligently mixes the old with the new, the results are pure golden magic. This costume-action, drama and love story features relative newcomer Leslie Cheung, who falls in love with the Dragon Maiden while learning the art of swordplay. The recipe is complete when veteran kung-fu stars Chen Kuan-Tai and Lo Lieh add just enough weapon-wielding spice to make this film really cook.

Director: Shan Hua
Writers: Louis Cha (novel), Ning Tam (as Ning Tan), Nai Pin Tsai
Stars: Leslie Cheung, Jing-Jing Yung, Kuan Tai Chen, Hsueh-yua Liu
Action Coordinator: To-Hoi Kong, Chi-Ho Lau

The Roving Swordsman (1983) [Shen Sheng Yi]

In The Roving Swordsman (1983) traveling swordsman Shen Sheng-yi (Ti Lung) and his lady friend match wits and swords with the last surviving member of the once great Murung family who is determined to rule the martial world by stealing plans to crafting firearms.

Director: Yuen Chor (as Chu Yuan)
Writers: Yuen Chor (screenplay) (as Yu Chin), Ying Wong (story)
Stars: Lung Ti, Li Ching, Pui-San Auyeung
Stunt Coordinator: Chia Tang

Shaolin Intruders (1983) [San chuang Shao Lin]

In Shaolin Intruders (1983) the Shaolin Temple becomes suspect when several clan leaders are robbed and killed by the deadly Shaolin Palm technique.

Director: Chia Tang
Writers: Ke Huang, Yun Ling, Kuang Ni, Kam-Hung Yip
Stars: Tung-Shing Yee, Jason Piao Pai, Phillip Ko

Stunt Coordinators: Chuen Chiang, Pei Chi Huang, Hoi Sang Lee, Bun Yuen, Wah Yuen
Martial Arts Instructor: Chia Tang

Tales of a Eunuch (1983) [Lu ding ji]

In Tales of a Eunuch (1983), superstar Gordon Liu Chia-hui teams up with the kung-fu comedian Wang Yu in Tales Of A Eunuch. Don’t let the title fool you, it is “balls to the walls” martial arts action.

Director: Shan Hua
Writer: Sai-Shing Shum (screenplay) (as Shi-Cheng Shen)
Stars: Yue Wong, Chia-Hui Liu, Linda Chu

Usurpers of Emperor’s Power (1983) [Feng shen jie]

In Usurpers of Emperor’s Power (1983) Liu Yung plays Li Lang, a court official out to avenge his former emperor. The target is easy to hate: the power-hungry Kuang-yi (Chao Kuo) is a plundering rapist and a cold-blooded murderer. But can one man take on the imperial army?

Director: Shan Hua
Writer: The Shaw Brothers Creative Group
Stars: Tony Liu, Leanne Lau, Kuo Chao
Action Coordinators: Pei Chi Huang, Bun Yuen, Wah Yuen

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The 8 Diagram Pole Fighter (1983) [Wu Lang ba gua gun]

In The 8 Diagram Pole Fighter (1983) General Pun Mei, the Khitan-ruled Liao Dynasty army succeeds in trapping the loyal Song general Yeung Yip and his 7 sons at Golden Beach With help from the treacherous Song Dynasty. Yeung Yip and his sons are all killed or captured in the ambush, except for the 5th and 6th sons who managed to escape. The 6th son returns home severely traumatized by the events. Meanwhile, the 5th son seeks refuge in a monastery in Mount Wutai, but the monastery leaders don’t think he is calm enough to become a Buddhist monk. As blades are not allowed inside a monastery, he uses his martial arts training in spears to practice with a pole, eventually developing the unique eight diagram pole fighting technique. When he finally appears to have put his anger and past behind him, news brakes that the Khitans had captured his younger sister, Yeung Baat-mui, who was looking for him. Now he must break Buddhist vows (including not to kill and not be bothered by worldly affairs) to save Baat-mui and exact his revenge.

Director: Chia-Liang Liu
Writers: Chia-Liang Liu, Kuang Ni
Stars: Chia-Hui Liu, Sheng Fu, Lily Li
Stunt Coordinators: Hou Hsiao, King Chu Lee, Chia-Liang Liu

The Supreme Swordsman (1983) [Zhi zhuan yi jian]

The Supreme Swordsman (1983) is a thrilling story of a malicious swordsman lying, cheating and stealing to get to the top, and the noble man who finally defeats him.

“99 have fallen, 1 remains.” The Supreme Swordsman is a late, but celebrated entry into the long list of awesome Shaw Brothers swordplay epics. In feudal China, an extremely conceited swordsman named Qin Wu Xin slices his way through 99 of the best swordsman China has to offer so that he can add their famous blades to his infamous 100 Swords Mansion. Now, with only one sword left to claim, Qin Wu Xin sets his sights on the mighty Xuan Yuan Sword of the legendary Supreme Swordsman. Ironically, he is effortlessly defeated by the Supreme Swordsman due to his own inferior blade and vows to return with a worthy weapon. After questioning his master and a few locals he discovers a sword that could bring him the victory he is so obsessed with having. It is the one and only Cold Eagle Sword, belonging to the secretive Black Magic Clan, which Qin Wu Xin happens to be a member of. He becomes angered with his master for not divulging this information to him and pursues the mysterious Cold Eagle Sword with unrelenting ruthlessness.

Director: Keith Li
Writer: The Shaw Brothers Creative Group (screenplay)
Stars: Tung-Shing Yee, Jason Piao Pai, Tien-Lang Li
Stunt Coordinator: Te-Chiang Teng

Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Films 1982

Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Films 1984

Editors note: The Shaw Brothers Martial Arts Film Project is a work in progress.