Nan Shao Lin yu Bei Shao Lin
1978 / 98m - Hong Kong
Invincible Shaolin poster


December 14, 2015


One of Cheh Chang's finest. Not that is a very remarkable film, it follows the Shaw Bros formula to the letter, but at this point in his career Chang was so skilled in making these films, he could probably direct them in his sleep. For people not too familiar with the formula though, it makes for an ideal entry point in Chang's overwhelming oeuvre.

The plot probably couldn't be any more basic. A malicious general tries to divide North and South Shaolin in order to seize the power. Once they see through his little plan, the best and brightest start their training to put an end to his coup, after which they face off in a rather lengthy and action-packed finale.

Usually these training scenes mess with the pacing, but they are actually pretty fun and inventive here. The film is filled with familiar Shaw Bros faces, the action is varied and well executed and once the final battle has a winner, the wrap-up of the film takes less than a minute. It's all very basic and predictable, but when the execution is on point that's hardly a problem. Martial arts/Shaw Bros fans are bound to have a good time with this one.