Some of my fondest memories from childhood involve watching kung fu and ninja movies with my little brother on the weekend. To me back then, martial arts were just as mysterious as sex; I had heard of them, but knew nothing about them firsthand. So when the fine folks at Severin and CAV decided to release a compilation of obscure kung fu movie trailers, I almost leapt for joy. This would be the perfect way to revisit some of those fond memories of yesteryear.
And sure enough, this collection does not disappoint. Crammed onto this single Blu-ray are two hours of some of the finest (and some of the hokiest) martial arts films known to man. If you are any kind of of action film fan, this trailer collection will be a must own for sure.
If you are not familiar with KUNG FU: TRAILERS OF FURY, here is the synopsis courtesy of Severin Films:
Get ready for the most hard-kicking, face-smashing, snake-fisting trailer collection of them all! From the golden age of kung fu cinema comes this insane tsunami of masters, mobsters, furious vengeance and incredible fighting styles, starring Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Lo Lieh, Sammo Hung, Angela Mao, Chuck Norris, Jimmy Wang Yu and Wu Tang, too. These are the most over-the-top and rarely-seen original trailers for Hong Kong classics that include THE WAY OF THE DRAGON, DEATH BLOW, TWO CHAMPIONS OF SHAOLIN, DAGGERS 8, SNAKE IN THE EAGLE’S SHADOW, SHAOLIN WOODEN MEN, THE STORY OF DRUNKEN MASTER, ENTER THE FAT DRAGON, BRUTAL BOXER and many more, plus exclusive new bonus features that deliver unique historical and cultural perspectives on the amazing world of martial arts movies.
I cannot begin to tell you how nostalgic these trailers made me feel. Many of the films represented are new to me, but many I had seen, and even more so had I heard about. I am not sure how many of these films are actually still in print, but I’d be very curious to find out.
One detail about the trailers in KUNG FU: TRAILERS OF FURY that stands out to me is the clip lengths. Some of them are almost five minutes long, an almost unheard of length of time by today’s standards. Several of the trailer clips present huge chunks of the fight choreography, a nice eye-popping treat for viewers interested in the titles. I don’t remember seeing many martial arts movie trailers back in the day, but I don’t remember them being this long. This is not a complaint, either…simply an observation.
My sole complaint about this collection is one that neither Severin nor CAV can control: the quality of some of the trailers is poor. Some have grainy pictures, while some have a skip in the picture here and there. Obviously, this is not an easy fix, so I begrudge neither company in any way. Again, this is simply an observation.
But I still love KUNG FU: TRAILERS OF FURY, and I highly recommend it to fans of the genre, particularly those who are looking for rare and obscure titles. If you’re new to these kinds of films, then picking this collection up will be a real treat and a great introduction into films that set the tone for recent classics, such as CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. In addition to the trailers, the Blu-ray offers some great Special Features that include:
* A Brief History of Kung Fu Cinema — Featurette with experts Ric Meyers and Frank Djeng
* Audio Commentary with writer Rick Meyers, Michael Worth, Martial Arts Instructor Greg Schiller, and Rick Stelow of Drunken Master Video
* The Way of the Cube — Featurette on the discovery of the original 35mm trailers under the stage of a maverick UK cinema