Three Hong Kong Film Blu-rays, Including Horror-Comedy ‘Blue Jean Monster,’ Available in December From MVD and 88 Films

Three Hong Kong film Blu-ray Disc releases — The Blue Jean Monster, The Inspector Wears Skirts and the Long Arm of the Law 1 & 2 double feature box set — are available in December from MVD Entertainment Group and 88 films.

Due Dec. 26 is The Blue Jean Monster, a 1991 Hong Kong horror-comedy directed by Ivan Lai. It follows a police officer named Joe who has a happy life with his pregnant wife. One day he gets a tip that a bank is about to be robbed and rushes to it but is killed. Then the strangest thing happens, Joe becomes a vampire when a black cat jumps on his body and is hit by lightning. Can Joe take revenge on his killers? The limited edition includes a slipcase with new artwork from James Neal. Available in 2.0 Cantonese dual mono with English subtitles, the release also includes the extras “Man Made Monster,” an interview with assistant director Sam Leong, and the original Hong Kong trailer.

In The Inspector Wears Skirts (1988), also due Dec. 26, Madame Wu (Sibelle Hu) has been assigned to the Hong Kong Police Academy to train female Banshee Squad Members, right next door to the all-male Tiger Squad lead by Inspector Kan (Shui-Fan Fung). After internal conflicts and courting mishaps, the squad members are ordered to band together to round up a gang of thieves, but nothing goes as planned. From executive producer, Raymond Chow (Enter the Dragon) comes this action comedy that was produced and choreographed by Jackie Chan and lensed by Andy Lau. The film, remastered from the original camera negative, put in motion a successful franchise, launched the career of international action star Cynthia Rothrock and helped to establish the viability of female-driven action films in Hong Kong and worldwide. The limited edition features a slipcase with new artwork from Sean Longmore. Available in 2.0 Cantonese dual mono with English subtitles and 2.0 English dual mono, the film’s extras include audio commentary by Frank Djeng; “Shooting Her Shot,” an interview with Cynthia Rothrock; “The Director Wears Pants,” an interview with director Wellson Chin; “Top Squad” English opening and closing titles; the Hong Kong trailer; the English trailer; and a stills gallery.

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Available now is the double feature box set of The Long Arm of the Law (1984) and The Long Arm of the Law Part 2. Directed by Johnny Mak (To Be Number One) and his brother Michael Mak (Sex and Zen, Butterfly and Sword), respectively, the two movies are packed with Hong Kong-style action sequences; pioneered the two gun style popularized later by films like Hard Boiled, Face Off and The Matrix; and provide a prelude to what would eventually become a quadrilogy of martial arts thrillers. Extras include reversible sleeves featuring original artwork; new artwork by Sean Longmore; new 2K restorations of both films in the 1:85:1 aspect ratio; audio commentaries by Hong Kong film expert Frank Djeng; new interviews with actor Philip Chan; and new interviews with director Michael Mak.

Martial Arts Action Film ‘The Postman Fights Back’ Due on Blu-ray Sept. 12 From MVD and 88 Films

The 1982 martial arts actioner The Postman Fights Back will be released on Blu-ray Disc Sept. 12 from 88 Films and MVD Entertainment Group.

In the film, when a courier (Ka-Yan Leung), alongside three other mismatched allies, is sent on a mission to deliver a secret cargo to a rebel leader, he soon finds himself on a patriotic quest to save the country and himself.

The film also stars Chow Yun-Fat (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), is directed by Ronny Yu (Bride of Chucky, Freddy vs. Jason) and comes from legendary Hong Kong studio Golden Harvest.

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Special features on the release, which contains both the Hong Kong and export cuts, include audio commentary with Frank Djeng and Ronny Yu; archival audio commentary with Stephan Hammond; an interview with Chow Yun-Fat; an interview with Leung Kar-Yan; a second interview with Leung Kar-Yan; an interview with Ronny Yu; and the original Hong Kong trailer.

Hong Kong Actioners ‘Magic Cop’ and ‘The Last Blood’ Due on Blu-ray From MVD and 88 Films

The Hong Kong actioners Magic Cop and The Last Blood are being released on Blu-ray Disc by 88 Films and MVD Entertainment Group.

Due July 25 is Magic Cop (1990). Mixing comedy, action and esoteric lore, the restored film from the golden age of Hong Kong cinema is making its Blu-ray debut. In the film, after seeing off hopping corpses in Mr. Vampire, Lam Ching-ying (Enter the Dragon, Eastern Condors) faces a new supernatural challenge: someone is using the living dead to smuggle drugs into modern day Hong Kong and only Lam’s Officer Feng — policeman and Taoist master — can stop them, proving the power of traditional Chinese magic in the process.  At age 17, star Lam Ching-ying became a stuntman and martial arts coach at the Shaw Brothers Studio, working on classics The Big Boss, Fists of Fury and Enter the Dragon. The film also stars Michael Miu (Black Ransom), Wu Ma (Police Story 2) and Billy Chow (Fist of Legend). Special features include audio commentary by Frank Djeng.

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Also known as Hard Boiled II, Police Protectors and 12 Hours of Terror, The Last Blood (1990) is being released Aug. 8, also for the first time on Blu-ray. A gunplay movie such as only Hong Kong filmmakers could produce and a full-tilt tribute to the heroic bloodshed of John Woo (Hard Boiled), The Last Blood is a pioneering mix of Buddhists and bullets. In the film, star Andy Lau is out for blood — literally. Terrorists have shot two people: their target was a Tibetan religious leader but they also wounded the girlfriend of Bee (Lau, God of Gamblers, Infernal Affairs). Since both victims share the same rare blood group, Bee joins the cops (headed by Alan Tam, Armour of God) racing to find a donor. But the terrorists haven’t finished yet. The film also stars Eric Tsang (The Eye) and Bryan Leung (Iron Monkey). The Last Blood is known in the United Kingdom as Hard Boiled II (most likely to boost video sales). However, the film has nothing to do with the John Woo film, considering it was made two years earlier. Special features include audio commentary by Hong Kong film expert Frank Djeng and the theatrical trailer.

Jackie Chan Actioner ‘Gorgeous’ Due on Blu-ray April 11 From MVD and 88 Films

The Jackie Chan action adventure Gorgeous (1999) will be released on Blu-ray Disc April 11 from MVD Entertainment Group and 88 Films.

In the film, young and beautiful Bu (Shu Qi, The Transporter) finds a romantic message in a bottle near her family restaurant in Taiwan. On a whim, she flies to Hong Kong to meet her potential soulmate, who turns out to be Albert (Tony Leung, Infernal Affairs), a gay beautician pining for his ex. Taking pity on the girl, he brings her to his workplace, where she falls for the wealthy and lonely C.N. Chan (Jackie Chan, Rush Hour, Supercop). But when Chan’s lifelong enemy Lo discovers Chan has a new love, he decides to ruin their happiness.

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The film, which garnered a 36th Golden Horse Award nomination for Jackie Chan (Best Action Choreography) and a 19th Hong Kong Film Awards nomination for Jackie Chan (Best Action Choreography), also stars Emil Chau (Rumble in the Bronx) and Stephen Chow (Kung Fu Hustle).

Michelle Yeoh Actioner ‘Magnificent Warriors’ Due on Blu-ray Feb. 21 From 88 Films and MVD

The 1987 Michelle Yeoh action film Magnificent Warriors is being released on Blu-ray Disc Feb. 21 from 88 Films and MVD Entertainment Group.

International star, 2023 Best Actress Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once) stars in this adventure set against the backdrop of World War II. Yeoh portrays a wisecracking mercenary pilot with a leather jacket, gun and bullwhip who sets aside personal greed to defend a small town and free its leader from the clutches of the invading Japanese army. In the finale, the town, armed only with spears and stones, rises up against the heavily fortified Japanese forces.

Yeoh’s martial arts prowess, comedic flair, and dramatic skills are brought to bear in this follow-up to the classic Royal Warriors.

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The release features dubbed and subtitled soundtracks; a new 2K restoration from the original camera negatives; audio commentary with Asian cinema expert Frank Djeng; an interview with Yeoh; and an interview with Tung Wai.

1988 Jackie Chan Actioner ‘Dragons Forever’ Due on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray Jan. 10 From MVD

The 1988 Jackie Chan action film Dragons Forever will be released on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray Disc Jan. 10 from MVD Entertainment Group and 88 Films.

In the film, hotshot lawyer Jackie Lung (Chan) is hired to defend the owner of a factory which, unbeknownst to him, is the center of a clandestine narcotics syndicate. He enlists resourceful acquaintances Wong Fei-Hung (Sammo Hung) and Dung Dak-Biu (Yuen Biao) to assist in the case, but loyalties begin to falter when romance blossoms.

The release includes 4K restorations of the original Hong Kong version; the English version, which was commissioned by Golden Harvest for international audiences outside Asia with the classic English dub; and the Japanese Version, which features two extra scenes and an ending with outtakes and is presented with English subtitles.

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Special features include audio commentary with Mike Leeder and Arne Venema; the original Hong Kong trailer; the original English trailer; outtakes and behind-the-scenes footage; deleted scenes; “The Legacy of Dragons Forever,” in which stuntmen Troy Sandford and Chris Jones and filmmaker Boyask, among others, discuss the unique chemistry between the stars; “The Breaker,” an archival program that takes a closer look at the acting and fighting career of Billy Chow, who has a memorable role in the film; “Kick Fighter,” an archival program in which Andy Cheng explains how he entered the film business and discusses his fighting style; and “Beyond Gravity,” an archival program in which martial arts/background performer Joe Eigo discusses the enormous impact Bruce Lee’s films had on him and his eventual transition to the film business.

‘Drive’ on 4K Among Hong Kong Cinema Titles Due on Blu-ray Aug. 9 From 88 Films and MVD

Hong Kong Cinema titles Drive and Flying Guillotine Part II from 88 Films are being released Aug. 9 from MVD Entertainment Group.

The sci-fi action adventure Drive (1997), from director Steve Wang, is being released on 4K Ultra HD. It stars Mark Dacascos as Toby Wong, a special agent from Hong Kong with a device implanted into his chest. The device gives him superhuman speed and agility, effectively making him a prototype for an enhanced human and the perfect weapon for war. Not wanting to live under Chinese control, Wong flees to San Francisco with Chinese hitmen following in pursuit. Wong’s goal is to make it to Los Angeles and sell the device for $5 million. Part of the significant influx of Hong Kong influence on American action films in the 1990s, Drive co-stars Kadeem Hardison and Brittany Murphy. The special edition release includes the director’s cut in 4K Ultra HD, as well as the original cut of the film in 2K. Special features include audio commentary, cast and crew interviews, and the new feature Highway to Nowhere.

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Also due Aug.9 on Blu-ray is Flying Guillotine Part II (1978), also known as Palace Carnage. This follow-up to the Shaw Brothers’ film The Flying Guillotine stars Lung Ti as Ma Teng, a heroic outlaw that partners with a group of female freedom fighters to rise up against evil emperor (Feng Ku). Despite being plagued by various production issues, including the departure of key cast members, the film — a favorite of Quentin Tarantino — delivers impressive action with high-flying aerial attacks and a never-ending display of creative weaponry. Even the titular guillotine is updated to include new features that make it even deadlier and bloodier than before. The 88 Films release includes the complete and uncut version of the film package in a limited edition slipcase with a collector’s booklet and poster.

Classic Kung Fu Films ‘Monkey Kung Fu’ and ‘Shaolin Mantis’ Due on Blu-ray March 22 From 88 Films USA and MVD

The classic kung fu films Monkey Kung Fu (1979) and Shaolin Mantis (1978) will be released on Blu-ray March 22 from the 88 Films USA label in partnership with MVD Entertainment Group.

A cult classic from the Shaw Brothers Studio, Monkey Kung Fu (aka Stroke of Death) is directed by Mar Lo (Shaolin Thief) and stars Siu-Tung Ching (The Shaolin Boxer). In the film, when a prisoner is given half of a wooden keepsake by a one eyed-master about to be executed, he breaks out of prison to go in search of the other half to discover its purpose. However, on his quest he is pursued by a gang leader who will also stop at nothing find out its secrets.

Included in the package are a limited edition slipcase with new artwork from R.P. “Kung Fu Bob” O’Brien; a double-sided A3 foldout poster; extensive booklet notes; audio commentary by Kenneth Brorsson and Phil Gillon of the Podcast On Fire Network; “Stunting Around,” an interview with choreographer Tony Leung Siu-hung; and the original trailer. 

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Also from the Shaw Brothers studio, Shaolin Mantis is from the golden age of Hong Kong martial arts cinema. In the film, when scholar Wei Fung (David Chiang) is hired by the emperor to infiltrate a clan of rebellious Ming loyalists, his mission goes adrift when he falls in love the clan leader’s granddaughter and his plans are discovered. The film is directed by Lau Kar Leung (The Spiritual Boxer, The 36th Chamber of Shaolin).

Included in the package are a limited edition slipcase with new artwork from R.P. “Kung Fu Bob” O’Brien; a double-sided A3 foldout poster; four collectible art cards; audio commentary with Asian cinema experts Mike Leeder and Arne Venema; audio commentary with Asian cinema expert Frank Djeng; “Complicated Families,” David West on Shaolin Mantis; an interview with actor John Cheung; the Deadly Mantis trailer; and an original Hong Kong trailer.