Director: Sammo Hung
Action directors: Sammo Hung, Meng Hoi, Brandy Yuen
Producer: Chan Pooi Wa
Stars: Sammo Hung, Max Mok, Fennie Yuen, John Shum, Lau Kar-Leung, Nina Li Chi, Meng Hoi, Billy Chow
A pedicab driver, "Fatty" Tung (Hung), along with one his friends, Malted Candy (Mok), find love in 1930's Macao. Unfortunately, Malted Candy's girlfriend (Yuen) is a prositiute owned by a local crime lord, Master 5 (Shum), who doesn't want to let go of his "merchandise" that easily and so he kills them on their wedding night. Tung goes out for revenge of his friend.
Pedicab Driver was the first "true" Sammo Hung movie I had seen. I'd seen some of the "three brothers" stuff he did with Jackie Chan and Yuen Biao, and a bit of his US TV series Martial Law. What always impressed me is how damn agile Hung was. To paraphrase Pulp Fiction, "I wouldn't go so far as to call the brother fat." But for a guy his size, damn, Sammo can move... he also has a great sense of humor and Pedicab Driver showcases both these talents.
The movie kicks off with a huge brawl between the taxi and pedicab drivers (complete with a duel where flourescent lights are used like lightsabers) and it only gets better from there. The next big action sequence starts off as a chase, where Sammo gets to show off his considerable stunt skills (and his pedicab gets chopped to bits in the process), and ends in a great, and I mean great, duel between Tung and the head of a gambling house (Lau). You might not think that a fight between a portly guy and a 55-year-old man would be that exciting, but this one sure as hell is. Hung and Lau beat the crap out of each other for a few minutes (during which one of the best badly translated subs is played -- "You, fatty, with thick face have hurt my instep!") and then pick up poles and beat each other up with those for a while. It's a great scene that ranks right up there with the Jackie Chan/Ken Lo fight at the end of Drunken Master 2.
I won't ruin any more of the movie for you, but it ends with a great brawl where Sammo takes on several guys and a somewhat unconventional ending. Pedicab Driver is a great movie from start to finish (though I could have done without the sickly-sweet musical montage in the middle) and I highly recommend it to any martial arts fan.
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