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Shaw Brothers

by Mark Ayala
One of the most important studios in Chinese cinema history, Shaw Brothers will always be best known in the west known for their excellent output of martial arts pictures (though they did do other types of films). Unlike a studio like Golden Harvest, Shaw Brothers lives off the fact that the settings in their films are usually on a set instead of real locations and that they feature very loud and completely unrealistic sound effects. These treasures are just recently getting great releases in the US from Image Entertainment and The Weinstein Company (see any early public domain editions for comparisons), but in the mean time, finding these… Read more

One of the most important studios in Chinese cinema history, Shaw Brothers will always be best known in the west known for their excellent output of martial arts pictures (though they did do other types of films). Unlike a studio like Golden Harvest, Shaw Brothers lives off the fact that the settings in their films are usually on a set instead of real locations and that they feature very loud and completely unrealistic sound effects. These treasures are just recently getting great releases in the US from Image Entertainment and The Weinstein Company (see any early public domain editions for comparisons), but in the mean time, finding these films can be real exciting in itself as it means you have to scavenge the Chinese parts of town and dig deep into their DVD stores which are loaded with decent editions of these films.

I have to say, I started my interested in these films when channel five in Los Angeles (KCLA) use to play “Kung-Fu Theater” every Saturday night up until I was five or six. Years later when I got my first DVD player, I made sure I picked up what I could that were cheap or easy to get. Now years later, I’m finally re-visiting these films and finding myself liking them more than ever.

There aren’t too many yet on The Auteurs (I’ll work on fixing that), but here are the ones that are listed from the master studio of some of the most over-the-top martial arts films!

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