“Cheap Chinese knock-offs aren’t limited to toys and electronics.”
Not to be confused, in any way with SexyKiller, this 1976 Shaw Brothers film is more of an unofficial remake of Coffy. Wanfei (Ping), a nurse by day, decides to go vigilante by night, after her sister falls victim to druglords and ends up brain-damaged and drooling. With most of the police force in the pockets of the dealers, Wanfei opts to go undercover as a drug-addict of loose morals, so she can make her way up the chain of command, to deliver justice on behalf of her sister to the sinister Boss (Hsia). This finds her an ally in Weipin (Hua), a childhood friend and honest cop whose hands are tied by pesky bureaucratic niceties, like “needing a search warrant”; she’s also encouraged by her pundit boyfriend (Wei), who has long taken a strong anti-drug stance.
This has its moments, and I’m likely remembering those more fondly than the movie overall, which grinds to a halt in the middle, and diverts far too much running time over to Weipin. Action-wise, this is from the Dark Ages of Hong Kong movies, after the death of Bruce Lee and before Jackie Chan resurrected the genre. The fights here are pedestrian and poorly-staged, with Ping’s credentials particularly limited, though male viewers may be distracted by her alternative assets [another review described her as spending most of her career lying on her back, and there’s plenty of that to go around here too]. The problem with remakes, is you inevitably compare them to the original, and while the heroine here is easy on the eye, there’s a reason Pam Grier is a genre icon, and Chen Ping isn’t.
Onto those “moments” mention above, which are the film’s saving grace. They start with Wanfei’s showing off her topless kung-fu, and build up to her crashing a car into the Boss’s mansion and letting loose on his minions with her shot-gun, apparently made by Perpetually Loaded Armaments, Inc. The film’s highlight probably comes when we discover what happens when you fire said weapon at a water-bed, which is something the Time Warp crew really should be looking into. However, between the opening and the finale, this comes over mostly as a pale (literally) imitation of Pam Grier’s journey down the same path, from three years previously.
Dir: Chung Sun
Star: Chen Ping, Yueh Hua, Wang Hsia, Szu Wei
a.k.a. The Drug Connection