masterly master lee

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

Archive for 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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Pullip, Dal and Byul to the rescue!

Shopping for nunchucks in Hong Kong in June 2010, Master Lee noted some rather overdressed but cute birds (dare we say wannabe Thunderbirds?) at a shopping mall. Practically preceding the success of limited edition vinyl toys, back in 2003 the Cheonsang Cheonha company launched a line of more exclusive and therefore more collectable alternatives for doll-totin’ toddlers, girlies and geeks, the Pullip. Read the rest of this entry »

Ouip, Derby Cat, Dunny or Qee?

Vinyl/designer toys are limited edition collectible toys usually with humanoid shapes that are most commonly produced in sizes 2.5~3″ or 6~8″. They often constitute customized variations of a given standard, with a sense of pseudo-individualism that would make Adorno proud. In many ways all forms of art rely on conventions, of course, but one could argue that as with manga, in the realm of vinyl art creation through imitation is the rule.  Read the rest of this entry »

The Jaws Of The Dragon aka The Fierce One (1976) review

Master Lee likes movies with James Nam because he’s such a good bad guy. So, what to think of a movie which he not only directed, but also stars in as the main good guy? Well, fortunately, the good guy here is a criminal, so James Nam can be as bad ass as he wants to be while staying in character. Read the rest of this entry »

The Kung Fu Fever 정무지보 (小師傳與大煞星) (1979)

the black dragon going at it

Another internationally coproduced product of prolific Korean martial arts flick director Kim Si-Hyun 김시현. This one stars Dragon Lee 거룡, sidekick staple Choi Min-Kyu 최민규 and the Black Dragon himself, Ron Van Clief (respect from Master Lee for the Black Dragon!). And quite rarely, Ron Van Clief is the bad guy in this movie about a lost book with the secret finger techniques of Bruce Lee (“So well-suited to a woman,” coos pretty female lead Amy Chun with what hopefully is irony). 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 »