ArtsScreen

CUFF can kung fu! Can you? Classic martial arts film marathon coming in May

So by now, we’re all vibrating with glee over the newly-announced Calgary Underground Film Festival lineup, but did you notice what these guys are doing the month after the festival?

Only a THREE DAY KUNG FU MARATHON! Yep, not satisfied with giving us wild movies and Saturday Morning cartoons in April, the good folks at CUFF will be hosting an event called 3 Deadly Days of Kung Fu at the Globe Cinema, from May 24-26, 2018. And this isn’t just any old crap — CUFF has carefully selected eight films from the best of Shaw Brothers Studio’s output from its 1960s-’80s heyday! Here’s the lineup:

• THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN (1978): Not only a great martial arts movie, but probably the best possible introduction to the genre. Gordon Liu (Kill Bill) plays the real-life Shaolin monk San Te in a great “boot camp” movie that brilliantly explains the importance of kung fu to Chinese history and culture. Plus … three-section-staff fight!

• DIRTY HO (1976): Back in the ’70s, the title didn’t mean what it does now. Honest.

THE BOXER’S OMEN (1983): Forget realistic fighting styles, let’s see some crazy special effects madness! Everything in this movie is slimy, glowing, bloody and on fire.

COME DRINK WITH ME (1966): Cheng Pei-Pei brings charm and dignity to one of cinema’s first and best female martial arts heroes.

CRIPPLED AVENGERS (1978): I love this movie! A group of disabled kung fu masters team up to get revenge on the lunatic who maimed them.

EIGHT DIAGRAM POLE FIGHTER (1984): I’ll come clean and admit that I haven’t seen this classic, but it sounds amazing.

FIVE DEADLY VENOMS (1978): It’s the first DVD I ever bought, and it’s one of the absolute best martial arts movies — for fans and newcomers alike. Don’t miss this one!

MIGHTY PEKING MAN (a.k.a. GOLIATHON) (1977): What the hell, let’s throw in a giant ape movie, too! This campy jungle adventure is substantially different from the rest of the lineup, but if you can’t find delight in a movie about a female Tarzan and her giant hairy friend, I just don’t understand you.

So that’s it! You might find it suspicious that I’m so enthusiastic about each one of these flicks, but the selection really is that awesome. (The only possible improvement would be to include INFRA-MAN, which I hear was discussed at one point.) Check www.calgaryundergroundfilm.org for details.

John Tebbutt is the Video Vulture. He has been writing about obscure and ridiculous cinema since 1997. You can keep up with his nonsense on his websiteFacebook and Twitter. Check out the latest episode of his online series here.

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