Kung Fu Theater: Bastard Swordsman

This month’s installment in Dan Halsted’s ongoing celebration of all things whoop-ass is the only known 35mm print of 1983’s Bastard Swordsman, a flat-out insane onslaught of rainbow-hued Wu Tang mayhem that mixes severe ass-whoop with a whole lot of translucent, glowing fantasy. The story (two rival schools compete to see whose magical kung fu is the best) might seem a little Harry Potter-ish now, but the pop-culture reference you should be keeping in mind is John Carpenter’s Big Trouble in Little China: of all the inspirations he sampled to craft that classic, The Bastard Swordsman is maybe the biggest.


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