Toward the end of the Ching Dynasty, the South China Sea was swarming with pirates looking to plunder treasure-rich Portuguese merchant ships. This titanic tale of a daring and heroic “Robin Hood” of the seas took no less than three directors: the “godfather of the kung-fu film”, Chang Cheh, his trusted co-director Pao Hsueh-li, and soon-to-be pioneer filmmaker Wu Ma. Adding to its importance is the fact that it is a starring showcase for Ti Lung, who came to prominence just a few years before, teamed with the charismatic David Chiang. Although Chiang guest stars as a suspicious but noble government officer, this is clearly Ti’s show as he swashes and buckles with the best of them - not just to save his pirate pals, but to aid persecuted fisher-folk against a corrupt and evil local ruler. It all adds up to epic entertainment which ranks with the finest seafaring adventures.
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