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2.2k voters

My Top 40 Classic Kung Fu Films

Updated June 2, 2019 5.5k votes 2.2k voters 320.3k views40 items
My favorite 40 classic Kung Fu movies,I will leave it up to you guys to vote on the order.. You may notice no Bruce Lee or Jacky Chan that is not because i overlooked them, while I do respect both,(Bruce for what he did for Martial arts cinema, and Jackie's early films were pretty good) I just wouldn't put either actors films in my personal top 40. I also didn't include Shaw Brothers films because I will do a top 20 Shaw Brothers films also. Enjoy
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  • Seven Grandmasters1
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    Seven Grandmasters

    A grand master travels across china and challenges the best grand master from each province to prove he is the best. while he wins with some of the greatest moves of the 9 pau mai strikes there is a plot developing behind his back. a dazzling display of kung fu by the grandmaster who seek to dominate the martial arts world. joseph kuo king of action movies triumphs again with another virtouso work.
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  • Shaolin Vs. Lama2
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    Shaolin Vs. Lama

    Alexander Lo Rei plays Sun Yu Ting, a kung fu fanatic in search of a teacher. After five years of challenging masters but never being beaten he runs into Hsu Shi (William Yen), a young Shaolin monk who stole money from a gambling match in order to acquire meat and wine for his master, who later discovers Yu Ting inside the Buddhist temple. Although Hsu's master defeats Yu with ease he refuses to take him on as a student. Yu then resorts to trickery to try and learn techniques from the aged monk. Eventually these antics come to the attention of the senior abbot who expels Yu Ting from the temple altogether.

    Yu is only allowed back into the temple after he rescues a girl escaping from the dreaded skyhawk clan. The head of the gang is a chief Lama and sworn enemy of Shaolin who, twelve years ago, stole one of temple's most treasured martial arts manuals the i-ching manual. Hsu Shi's master eventually agrees to take Yu Ting on as a student but lessons are cut short when the Lama turns up and kills the master (who was his ex-master). Yu now swears revenge but before he can leave Shaolin he has to learn the Buddhist Finger technique, the only style that can defeat the Lama Chief.
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  • The Mystery of Chessboxing3
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    The Mystery of Chessboxing

    Lee Yi Min stars as an eager young kung fu student who seeks to improve his fighting skills with an aim to avenge his father's murder at the hands of the Ghost Face Killer, an overwhelming force of destruction and master of the death-dealing Five Element Fist. Lee Yi Min's eagerness to study attracts the attention of the Master Of Chess Boxing, Jack Long, who is the Ghost Face Killer's arch enemy. Together, master and student devise a wicked cross fertilization of the Chess Boxing and Five Element Fist styles and set out to put an end to Ghost Face's deadly reign.
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  • The Prodigal Son4
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    The Prodigal Son

    Sammo Hung, Yien Biao

    Released1981

    Directed bySammo Hung

    Yuen Biao is a spoiled martial artist-wannabe son whose wealthy father pays others to lose to Yueb during fights. When his father's scheme is revealed to him by a seasoned Peking Opera performer (Ying), Yuen vows to learn kung-fu for real. But first he has to persuade Lam to take him on as a pupil, then there's Lam's rival colleague (Hung) and a mysterious, fight-seeking challenger to contend with!
  • Shaolin Iron Claws5
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    Shaolin Iron Claws

    Li Yi Min, Wong Tao

    Released1979

    Directed byKo Shih Hao

    At the beginning of the republic, an ex-Ching lord (Chan Sing) forces a group of ex-Ching ministers to sign a declaration for the re-establishment of the Ching Dynasty. This declaration falls into the hands of a provincial police cheif (Wong Tao) and all hell breaks loose.
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  • Fighting of Shaolin Monk (Killer Priest)6
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    Fighting of Shaolin Monk (Killer Priest)

    Chan Sing, the muscular veteran of many genre classics including Vengeance! and Bloody Fists, plays Tamo (AKA Budhidharma), a legendary Buddhist monk who traveled to China in the 6th century. According to legend, he brought physical training exercises to Shaolin temple that aided in the development of modern Shaolin kung fu. Shaolin Monk depicts Tamo as the originator of the Eighteen Hands of the Lohan, an ancient series of qigong exercises still in use to this day. Instead of showing his involvement with Shaolin, the film has Tamo on the road and in search of a pupil, who turns out to be the son of a rural village doctor named Chi Yun (Man Kong-lung). This leads into what the movie is really about, which is how Chi Yun and his feisty gal pal Yen Chi (Chia Ling) end up in a struggle against a recently arrived Taoist priest (Chuen Yuen), who kills villagers and kidnaps all the pretty women while pretending to help them. Despite Yen Chi’s jealous hatred of the monk, Tamo ends up teaching Chi the Lohan techniques for use against the priest, while the monk takes on the priest’s reclusive master Tin Chu (Phillip Ko)
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  • Iron Monkey (School of Shaolin)7
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    Iron Monkey (School of Shaolin)

    Iron (Chen Kuan Tai) is the no good son of a respected family of ming rebels. After a family friend betrays them they are slaughtered by the qing. Iron escapes with the help of supporters. He wanders for a while until he attempts to steal food from shaolin temple and is caught. A student at shaolin (Chi Kuan Chun) asks him to stay and he soon exceeds the other students in his kung fu. When asked to choose a style to study he choose Monkey Fist the most difficult style only taught by the Bitter Monk who has been exiled to an abandoned part of the monastery. After mastering Monkey Fist he joins the qing army as an officer in an attempt to kill those who murdered his family. A great cast of villians including Lueng Kar Lan, Wilson Tong, and Kam Kong also star. Indeed my second favorite kung fu movie of all time.
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  • The Leg Fighters8
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    The Leg Fighters

    Tan Tao Liang, Ha Kwong Lee

    Released1980

    Directed byLee So Nam

    Renowned kickfighter Tan Tao Liang (THE HOT, THE COOL, AND THE VICIOUS) stars in this butt-kicking kung fu fest, hailed by critics as one of the greatest kicker movies ever made! When Pan, a South China martial artist is defeated and killed by Tan, a North China challenger in a legfighter duel, Pan's younger brother Pak(Peng Kang) vows to crush Tan with his own unique style of ferocious footwork, THE LEG FIGHTER is high-flying, brilliant kickfighting action!
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  • Snake and Crane Secret9
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    Snake and Crane Secret

    snake and crane secret is a fast paced martial arts action film about a familys battle for survival. a family tries to uphold their honor while keeping their sacred kung fu book from getting into the wrong hands. a tale of deceit mistrust and traditional values unfolds along with spectacular fight sequences necessary to keep the snake crane secret.
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  • Cantonen Iron Kung Fu10
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    Cantonen Iron Kung Fu

    Leung Kar Yan, Philip Ko Fei

    Released1979

    Directed byLee Chiu

    One of my favorite Leung Kar Yan films, is a story loosely based on the famous Ten Tigers of Kwangtong. Kar Yan stars as Iron Bridge Kun, a laborer for one of two rival companies in Kwangtong. The Owner of the rival company is a wanted killer who hires a gang of thugs to intimidate Kun's boss into closing up shop. Kun and his buddies stand up for their boss and beat the thugs causing their leader (played by Philip Ko Fei) to come out of hiding and fight them in an awesome final showdown.
     
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  • World of Drunken Master11
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    World of Drunken Master

    Jack Long, Mark Long

    Released1979

    Directed byJoeseph Kuo

    My personal favorite of the Drunken Master inspired films. Joeseph Kuo once again teams up with the Yuens to make a shapes masterpiece. Two young competing vendors(Lee Yi Min) (Jack Long) steal their grapes from the local vineyard. When they are caught, the caretaker forces them to work to repay their debt. When the vineyard becomes threatened by thugs the caretaker sees potential in the two young men and teaches them the Falls of the Eight Immortals drunken kung fu. When there master is killed by Tiger Yeh (Lung Fei) and his gang they use their drunken kung fu to defeat him.. After going their seperate ways and wandering the country for 20 years, they are reunited and learn that one of Tiger Yeh's disciples is seeking them out for revenge. Great kung fu throughout including a brief but great cameo from Mark Long.
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  • Shaolin King Boxer12
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    Shaolin King Boxer

    Meng Fei, Chen Kuan Tai

    Released1979

    Directed byKarl Maka

    An ex-constable with vengeance on his mind (Chen Kuan Tai) and a mercenary bounty hunter (Meng Fei) form an uneasy alliance to nail gang leader Shu Tin Shen and his henchmen when two of his goons break him out of jail in this fast-paced kung-fu tale. Paying a visit to the former cop -- who put the vile Shu behind bars -- the trio slaughters his family, leaving him desolate, seething and looking to settle the score.
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  • Unbeaten 2813
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    Unbeaten 28

    Fei Meng, Nancy Yen

    Released1980

    Directed byJoeseph Kuo

    An evil master (Mark Long) kills what he thought was the final member of the Wu Tang clan, little did he know that there was a son. The son, (Meng Fei) is taken by his Uncle (Jack Long) to a secret hideout to be trained in the ways of the Wu Tang. To complete his training he must seek out a book that one must complete a series of trials to posess. After learning the secrets of the book he seeks out his fathers killer for revenge.
  • The Challenger14
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    The Challenger

    David Chiang, Norman Chu

    Released1979

    Directed byEric Tsang Chi Wai

    Two top class kung fu fighters challenge all the top kung fu masters in the land, one motivated by revenge, the other by greed. The two fighters team up to face their ultimate challenge in the form of Master Pao
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  • Of Cooks and Kung Fu15
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    Of Cooks and Kung Fu

    "Someone is killing the great chefs of China."

    The "King Of Chefs" (Chai Kai, "Mars Villa") family is wiped out by a vengeful killer but the King escapes with his grandson (Chan Siu Lung). The King Of Chefs teaches him the different and deadly "Cooking Kung Fu" so that he will be prepared to face the mysterious killer and whip up a mean lo mein!

    Chan Siu Lung's (AKA Jackie Chen) acrobatic kung fu style is in full effect as he faces off in a final fight to the death with Chang Shan
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  • Seven Steps of Kung Fu16
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    Seven Steps of Kung Fu

    Cheng Tien Chi, Chai Kai

    Released1979

    Directed byTing Hwa Chung

       A ruthless white-haired general intends to take over a small town with the help of his posse, "The Five Hands Gang". A local tearaway and kung fu kid, Tiger, learns of their plot and informs his uncle Lee San Pai, master of the seven steps style of kung fu and sworn enemy of the Five Hands Gang. The old master instructs Tiger in the art of seven steps kung fu and together they tackle the white-haired general and the Five Hands Gang. A true classic that shook late night!
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  • 7 Commandments of Kung Fu17
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    7 Commandments of Kung Fu

    Li Yi Min, Chang Yi

    Released1979

    Directed byKo Shih Hao, Lee Yi Min

    Seven commandments stars li yi min as the protege of chang yi; who teaches him the seven commandments of combat. however; li breaks with his master when he learns of changs dedication to violence; something li cannot abide by; forcing the master and student to fight each other to the death. based on the spaghetti western days of wrath.
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  • Hell's Wind Staff18
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    Hell's Wind Staff

    Hwang Jang Lee, Mang Hai

    Released1979

    Directed byTung Wong

    A gang of kidnappers are selling townspeople as slaves to Indonesia. Two boys and their kung-fu teacher hear of this disturbing news and decide to try and break it up. The teacher ends up dead after fighting with the leader, Lu, known for his... A gang of kidnappers are selling townspeople as slaves to Indonesia. Two boys and their kung-fu teacher hear of this disturbing news and decide to try and break it up. The teacher ends up dead after fighting with the leader, Lu, known for his notorious fighting style, the "Hellz Windstaff." The boys are now on the run while at the same time learning new kung-fu techniques called the "White Dragon Fist" and the "Paddle-Staff" from an instructor who had bad history with Lu. The boys are angry and determined to gain revenge for their kung-fu master as the instructor prepares them for the fight of their lives
  • Eagle's Claw19
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    Eagle's Claw

    Bryan Leung, Chi Kuan-chun

    Released1977

    Directed byLee Tso Nam

    The respective schools of The Eagle's Claw and Praying Mantis, two different disciplines of Chinese kung fu, are also bitter rivals. When yet another bloody clash between the two schools leads to the death of the master at the Eagle's Claw school, his head pupil loses faith and defects to the enemy. It is now up to the remaining pupils to uphold their school and defeat the traitor before they themselves become Praying Mantis' prey
  • Shaolin Invicible Sticks20
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    Shaolin Invicible Sticks

    Wong Tao, Chang Yi

    Released1979

    Directed byLee Tso Nam

    A master of pole fighting (Chang Yi) and his disciples are traveling the countryside and challenging all of the pole fighting schools to matches to the death. Wong Tao plays the young heir to one of those prominent pole fighting schools. His uncles deceive him by making him believe he has failed the test to prove himself worthy so they can throw him out of the school before the pole master arrives to kill them. Once he learns of what has happened to his family and their school, he turns his attention to becoming the best pole fighter, and seeks revenge on the man who killed his family.
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  • The Fist, the Kicks, and the Evils21
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    The Fist, the Kicks, and the Evils

    In a small town a ruthless gang murders two brothers, one a kung fu teacher the other a generous doctor both skilled in crane fist kung fu. The son of the Doctor vow's to seek revenge but is not strong enough. He is taken in by an old vegetable vendor who turns out to be a crane fist master, after much convincing he begins teaching him the deadly crane fist style to prepare him to take revenge against his families murderers.
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  • Shaolin Devil, Shaolin Angel22
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    Shaolin Devil, Shaolin Angel

    An assassin terrorizes the countryside, killing many fighters from distinct clans and leaving only one clue - a mask. A secret government agent (Don Wong Tao) posing as an assassin himself, is on assignment to bring the assassin to justice. Meanwhile, Wan Yi Fei (Chen Sing) and his brother Wong Tu Lung (Wong Hap) are attacked and killed along with many other of the clan. Chen (Stephen Tung Wei), Wong Tu Lung's son, is the lone survivor and goes to the mountain to train with an old monk in order to get revenge.
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  • Buddah's Palm and Dragon Fist23
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    Buddah's Palm and Dragon Fist

    li yi min, chi kuan chun

    Released1980

    Directed byKo Shih Hao

    Chi Kuan Chun is sent to look for a killer. Kuan Chun is a student at Shaolin and Lee I Min is mad that Kuan Chun was chosen to go. The rest of the movie is nonstop fights and comedy with Lee I Min playing jokes on Kuan Chun. The movie is kind of thin and predictable on plot but there is superb choreography and fights throughout . And overall the movie is above average with lots of good comedy. So turn your brain off and enjoy.

    The choreography is done by the main villain of the movie Suen Shu Pau. I am guessing Robert Tai also had a hand in the action because I spotted him in the movie. The fighting is very dance like and it is so much fun to watch. There are too many fights to go over, but I will tell you that the final fight is the best. It is fast and furious and 8 minutes long.
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  • Snake Deadly Act24
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    Snake Deadly Act

    Kwok chung is a righteous rich kid who is hobby is to fight and brawl. one encounter nearly gets him killed but he is saved by yue yi (wilson tong) the snake fist master. yue befriends and teaches kwok the deadly art of the snake. but kwok soon realizes that his teacher has more in common with a snake than just techniques he is being set up by his teacher and his family is also targeted for murder! the treachery runs very deep as kwok and yue have a snake style showdown to end them all!! this is the rarest and deadliest kung fu film ever released on dvd!!
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  • The Guy with the Secret Kung Fu25
    45
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    Released1981

    Directed byKei Law

    Kung Fu superstar Meng Fei stars in this kung fu story dealing with rebels trying to rise against the manchurian emperor and his band of fighters. Meng Fei must face off with a pair of sword masters, a 7-foot strong man (frankenstien like), and then he must face off with the emperor himself and his deadly toad style, complete with croaking and expanding stomach. very creative and quite enjoyable to. Meng Fei does it again
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