There’s a few one armed people in this town..
Master of the Flying Guillotine (1976)
Directed By: Yu Wang
Many many moons ago, while watching TV late at night with a bunch of my friends I came across a film I would later find out to be, Master of the Flying Guillotine. On the screen we laughed and had an awesome time while watching a one armed man do battle with an old blind man that used a thing called a flying guillotine to decapitate people. But isn’t that usually what movies of this nature are? Battles between groups and styles? Whatever you want to prefer when it comes to these films, you can’t argue the enjoyment a movie like this gives you. And I think I enjoyed it just as much now as I did originally all those years ago.
The one-armed boxer is stalked by a vengeful flying guillotine expert, after his disciples were killed in the first ‘One-Armed Boxer’ film. But as the flying guillotine master is blind, he starts his quest by becoming a serial killer of one-armed men. Meanwhile, the one-armed boxer is running a martial arts school, they of course all go to a tournament where all hell breaks loose. There’s really no other way to put it because the logic is not this films strong point. But there is a whole heck of a lot of action and kung fu!
Well, lets be honest shall we? This movie is really gimmicky and the it doesn’t try to hide it, it plays it up. It’s sorta like a real life video game in the way that everyone has a gimmick. Our lead of course has one arm. We have an Indian that has arms that stretch (that’s pretty funny). We have strong guys, monkey men, a dude that looks like Raiden and a bad guy that plays a horn too. But at the head of all of this we have a vengeful old blind man who is a master of a device called the Flying Guillotine. And when he goes on his rampage of beheading one armed men it’s a hoot to watch.
And now lets get into the silly stuff and lack of logic that oddly enough only adds to the overall enjoyment of this movie. During the tournament about 85% of the people that lose their fight die and nobody cares. But when the blind man shows up and beheads one of the participants, he’s a murdering bastard? I found that really funny in it’s self. I also find it funny that there are more than a few one armed men in this setting. I don’t think I have more than one one armed man in my town. This town at least has three of them and two know kung fu, one just knows it really damn well. You also don’t want to mess with this one armed master because as we see in this movie, he is really smart and does away with the bad guys in really violent (and fun to watch) manners.
Yeah that blind man gets around better than most people with two good eyes and yes that man with the arms is rather outrageous, but this movie is a lot of fun. If you want action this movie more than makes up for everything else it lacks in action and also with style. While some well known movies of this nature rely more on story, this one just unloads tons and tons of fighting and blood on you. I mean people lose their heads, so what much more could you want? And that final battle in this one is rather epic if I do say so myself. This is for sure a must watch for anyone who loves these types of movies.
If you watch this one with the bad dubbing on and just kick back and let go of any logical expectations, this is an extremely fun film to watch. While there are some others that are great in their own right, and people might pick those over this one in a list of the best ever in karate style movies, I’d probably take this one as my top pick in the genre.
The Rating (7.5/10)