Friday, July 3, 2015

The Kid With The Golden Arm (1979)

The title seemed familiar and after a few minutes watching it, I knew I had watched it before... but a long time ago. I remember the  sand palm, 'golden arm' with his gold bracelets and the hero with double axes, especially the latter because the costume was unique. It was black with white shoelaces. I think almost all the costumes in this movie are interesting.

The story was simple, thus gave the movie an opportunity to have as many fight scenes as possible. A shipping company led by Yang was given an order to ship chests of gold. A gang of 4 bandits: Golden Arm, Silver Spear, Steel Robe and Brass Head; were after the gold. Yang hired more guards: Swordsman Li and his girlfriend Miss Leng, duo Short Axe - Long Axe, and wine-lover Hai To. It was easy to guess, that there were troubles on the way. Like all Shaw Brothers movies, this one also ended with a happy ending: means all bad guys dead and the good guys win.

Golden Arm. His hands are his best weapon. Bandit no.1
His costume is actually similar to what's used in wayang orang
Silver Spear. Bandit no.2
Iron Robe - bandit no.3 (left) and Brass Head - bandit no.4 (right). I remember Iron Robe because of his unique costume. He also carries a steel fan. In wuxia books, fan as a weapon is described being made of steel; not paper like Ti Lung or Cheng Shao-ciu usually carry.

Left: Iron Feet, a dangerous opponent who also sets eyes on the gold. Right: Imperial agent Hai To, well played by Philip Kwok. Hai To is the main hero. Hai To saves Li's life after being hit with a poisonous sand palm.

Left : Miss Leng. I think her blue costume is beautiful. Right : Swordsman Li. Li is handsome, but cold and arrogant. My impression is that he is a very skilled swordsman because to reach such a level he must pay attention to his swordplay and ignore others, including his poor girlfriend. Probably he is based on Gu Long's Sebun Jui-soat or Yap Koh-seng. He dresses all in white.

I didn't remember the story, but I remember this costume.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is a masterpiece of Kung Fu action to go with an intriguing story. Phillip Kwok as Hai To is the happy-go-lucky constable who really lights up the film. He has a chance to claim the gold, and win the gal but walks off, probably to another of his wine drinking escapades. I think this is one of the few films that the black sand palm technique was used. It's as mysterious as it is deadly!