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Cult Movie Essentials: Invincible Shaolin (1978)

Invincible Shaolin is the second proper Venoms movie, following on from Five Venoms.  Legendary director Chang Cheh returns to explore how the Ching Governments attempts to stamp out the influence of the Shaolin – a theme he also explored in Heroes Two.

The plot involves an evil Qing general (Wong Lung Wei) who comes up with a brilliant plan to rid the Qing Empire once and for all of the Shaolin masters. He invites three Northern Shaolin experts to his mansion and has them fight the in a contest against three novice Southern Shaolin men already present at his mansion. By royal decree, Shaolin was required to supply experts to teach the Qing troops martial arts.

 

The Northern Shaolin experts easily and decisively win against the South Shaolin men. After the contest, the general visits the South Shaolin men in their quarters later that night and secretly kills the Southerners. He then has his subordinate go to South Shaolin placing the blame squarely on the Northerners. The Southern master of the dead disciples is deceived into believing that the Northern experts killed his disciples. This would begin an internal conflict between both Shaolin schools. It is only when the South Shaolin experts have their final confrontation with the Northerners that the general reveals himself.

 

The experts from both schools realize they have been deceived and manipulated. Joining forces both North and South experts battle the general and his troops to allow some of their fellows to escape and reveal the Qing plot to destroy Shaolin.

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Founded Cult Faction in 2014; previously crawled out of the Black Lodge in 1976, only to find himself in the Village.

One thought on “Cult Movie Essentials: Invincible Shaolin (1978)

  1. Reblogged this on Quantum Multiverse and commented:
    This one has to be in my top 5 of all time Kung Fu Flicks! It is also known as “Unbeatable Dragon”. The word Dragon had to be in just about every American release of a Martial Arts movie to have any traction or gravitas. When I moved to Reno, NV, in 1987 I found a teach that was teaching Wing Chun Kuen Kung Fu. After my first lesson I thought that it seemed very familiar as I sat in my car. I raced home and popped this movie into my VCR and I was right! The son of the Southern Shaolin school’s teacher (Sifu) was taught the exact style that I was learning. By this time I was already familiar with the movie for about 6 years. It gave my real life a connection with a fun, stylised, fantasy. It has been almost 30 years since that first lesson, not my first or last art to be learned, I now teach and I still watch this cult classic!

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