masterly master lee

a home for forgotten and famous korean pulp, its heroes, its heroines, and its pulpeteers

Archive for masterly pulp

Manchurian Tiger 龍虎對鍊 (1974) review

A title like this sure gets the Master going. Manchurian Tiger… with Han Yongcheol 한용철 aka Charlie Han, the guy who packs a punch and a kick or two. And directed by the dean of Korean action Lee Doo Yong 이두용.  The movie starts out great with Han extorting money from a dubious-looking character. We know we’re in Manchuria because the dubious-looking character is dressed in Chinese-style clothes (let the Master rephrase: cinema Chinese-style clothes). Action then switches to the bad guys (same clothes, mixed with Japanese-style clothes to conveniently identify who’s bad) who are kicking, punching and whipping the bejeezus out of a Read the rest of this entry »

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When Taekwondo Strikes 跆拳震九州 (1973)

Classic Taekwondo movie starring the great Jhoon Rhee (李俊九) and Angela Mao. Set during the colonial period, it tells of the tribulations Koreans went through at the hands of the merciless Japanese occupier. Some, however, fight back using Taekwondo. Now, for those who grew up watching Olympic Taekwondo, this may sound like a lost cause, but proper Taekwondo Read the rest of this entry »

Deadly Angels AKA The Bod Squad 俏探女嬌娃 1977 review

The Master was thoroughly entertained by this Charlie’s Angels rip off, that is much better than the original in all respects. Goofy effects (often unintended, but that’s what 30 years having floated by will do for you) are offset by the grim, gritty atmosphere. The 70s yellow plastic visors on the space helmets of the robbers during a jewelry heist dressed as security guards don’t look so funny anymore after they start killing people almost indiscriminately. Read the rest of this entry »

Run Away 런어웨이 1995 review

Oh yummy, a very early Kim Seongsu 김성수 movie! He’s the pulp master that brought us Musa (Musa: The Warrior) 무사, There Is No Sun 태양은 없다, and Beat 비트. And this one features as martial arts director the unsurpassed Jeong Duhong 정두홍.

Yi Donghui (Yi Byeongheon 이병헌), a handsome game designer, and Choe Miran (Kim Eunjeong 김은정), a pretty free-lance illustrator (who lives in an impossibly large loft), have a steamy one-night stand, Read the rest of this entry »

Private Eye 그림자살인 2009 review

private eyeWhat is it about Korean soundtracks that makes them instantly recognizable? Is the ever-present accordion? The dramatic yet light-footed rhythm of the intro (think dancing bears), the canned strings? The Master isn’t sure (which as you know doesn’t happen very often), Read the rest of this entry »

Shanghai Blues 샹하이 부르스 1969 review

eab980eab8b0eb8d952Shanghai Blues by director Kim Kidŏk (pictured; no, not the guy who hates women) is a colourful gem among Korea’s less serious features (and Master Lee wonders why it has not yet been brought out on DVD, whereas terribly forgettable movies such as 갯마을 have). Why? Read the rest of this entry »

Vintage Korean film posters 2 한국영화 옛 포스터 2

the-stray-bullet.jpgHere are some more vintage Korean film posters. The first one is from what is commonly regarded as the best Korean film ever, The Stray Bullet 誤發彈 (1961). And Master Lee agrees. Although he doesn’t really think in terms of lists with at the top the best (except when it comes to himself, of course), Read the rest of this entry »