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Reviews » Blu-ray Reviews » Kung Fu Trailers Of Fury (Blu-ray)
Kung Fu Trailers Of Fury (Blu-ray)
Severin // Unrated // March 1, 2016 // Region A
List Price: $24.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by John Sinnott | posted March 9, 2016 | E-mail the Author
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C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
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P R I N T
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The Trailers:

I really like trailers. They're like mini bite-sized movies that you can watch in a few minutes, and often times they're better than the full-length feature itself. The problem with trailer compilations is that they often feature old, low quality print and there is a lot of repetition between various publishers. There are some notable exceptions, Synapse's 42nd St Forever discs are great, but I approach new trailer collections with caution. When Severin announced that they were releasing a set of Kung Fu trailers, I did get excited. I've like the other discs I'd seen from the company, and they were taking the trouble to release it on Blu-ray (along with a DVD version) which is a good sign.

It turns out any worries I had were unfounded. Severin's Kung Fu: Trailers of Fury is an excellent collection and just loads of fun for fans of old-school choppy socky flicks, and with no overlap from other trailer compilations that I have seen. Just brimming with martial arts goodness, this set is sure to please. There are trailers for films with big stars (Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Sammo Hung) as well as some more obscure films like One Armed Chivalry Fights Against One Armed Chivalry. Hey with a title like that, how can it be bad? There's also some Blacksploitation trailers included too. They're always fun.

The great thing about this collection is that, as I already mentioned, these are often better than the full-length film. In a couple of minutes you get to see all of the best scenes, with none of the action-killing plot that is inserted to hold the scenes together. A good example of this is the trailer for Kung Fu vs. Yoga. The movie, as you will guess from the title, pits martial artists against a Yoga expert. The Yogi is attacked with loops of rope on poles but he bends and contorts his body in unusual ways and slips through the ropes with ease. It's amazing and fun to watch... for a minute or two. I don't think I would want to sit through an hour and a half of such contortions.

The movies aren't all bad, and some of them I would very much like to see. Shaolin Iron Claws had some good looking fights, and it has an evil looking villain with long white hair. I'm a sucker for a creepy villain. Sammo Hung's Enter the Fat Dragon has been on my 'to watch' list for a while, simply because I enjoy the actor. After seeing this trailer I've moved it up on the list.

This collection contains trailers for these movies:

Ways of Kung Fu
Fists of Bruce Lee
Kung Fu vs. Yoga
Death Blow
Two Champions of Shaolin
Golden Dragon, Silver Snake
Daggers 8
Secret of the Shaolin Poles
The Happening
Snake in the Eagle's Shadow
Story of the Drunken Master
Chinese Kung Fu Against Godfather
The Invincible Swordsman
Return of Bruce
Bruce Le's Greatest Revenge
Shaolin Iron Claws
Fast Fingers
My Kung Fu 12 Kicks
Brutal Boxer
Blacklist
The Damned
Bruce's Deadly Fingers
One Armed Chivalry Fights Against One Armed Chivalry
Way of the Dragon
Hong Kong Connection
Chinese Kung Fu
18 Shaolin Disciples
The Blazing Temple
Shaolin Wooden Men
The Magnificent Boxer

The Blu-ray:


 Video:

These trailers were all scanned in 2K and transferred from original 35mm reels that had recently been discovered in England. They look very good considering that they were accidentally preserved with bright colors and strong detail. That doesn't mean that they're perfect. It's obvious that the films were run through a projector a time or two, there are some scratches and dirt, but overall they look really good.

Audio:

The audio for these trailers is in the original language (in most cases) with hard English subtitles. The stereo sound track is good but not great, the main problem being the technology at the time these were made. The sound is a little flat and the sound effects are obviously dubbed in, but that's part of the charm of Kung-Fu movies. It's not hard on the ears, but don't go in expecting the quality of the latest Hollywood blockbuster.

Extras:

Come for the trailers, stay for the extras. This disc has some fun trailers, but the extras are the real meat of the meal. It starts out with A Brief History of Kung Fu Cinema, a nearly half-hour long featurette looking at genre from the silent era forward. Film experts Ric Meyers (author of the indispensable book, Films of Fury) and Frank Djeng give a great overview of Kung Fu movies and touch all of the bases from the Shaw Brothers and Golden Harvest to Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan. If you don't know much about the world of Hong Kong cinema, this is a great introduction.

These trailers were discovered in an old theater in England, and the story of how they were found and just what the theater was being used for is chronicled in The Way of the Cube. It was okay, but definitely worth watching.

The best bonus however is the commentary track. Ric Meyers returns and is joined by Michael Worth (The Bruceploitation Bible), Martial Arts Instructor Greg Schiller and Rick Stelow of Drunken Master Video. They provide a very informative and entertaining track that is a lot of fun to listen to. I was going to just spot check this track and listen to 15 minutes or so at various places to get a feel for it, but once it started I was drawn in and listened to the whole thing. They talk about the history of the films, the studios that made them, and the actors and stunt men who made these flicks into something special. One of the best commentary tracks that I've heard in a while.

Final Thoughts:

Great fun! Two-hours' worth of Kung Fu goodness and some awesome extras. You can't miss with this. Highly Recommended.
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