It can be one of the originators of 80s 殭屍 variants.
This is rather a Taiwanese film directed by 郭南宏, the representative director of Taiwan 70s. I suppose that 湘西趕屍 is the original Taiwanese title. Three heroes of Ming dynasty try to go through the Qing dynasty boundary by masquerading themselves as 趕屍.
- 動作設計：黃飛龍 as 黃龍
- 范凌 as 秦夢 … Shang Mei
- 黃家達 … Ka Long-Tat
- 唐威 … Lin Yung-Chan
- 董力 as 翁之請 … Hung
- キョンシー・ブラザーズ 精霊兄弟
- Japan Audio Visual Network 1987年11月21日 VHS
- 英題：The legend of living corps
However it’s a unique film for better or worse.
This is rather a Taiwanese film. 郭南宏 is considered as the representative director of Taiwan 70s. And almost staffs and casts are Taiwanese. I know only 黃家達 by 合氣道 and 唐威 by 大追蹤.
This film is amusing. However it’s unique for better or worse. On several scenes, I suppose that the director had been smoking.
Supernatural power, but she is just a human.
The heroes of last 明朝 (Ming dynasty) deliver a secret letter to his army, for defeating 清朝 (Qing dynasty). The heroes try to go through the prefectural boundary by masquerading themselves as 趕屍 (Gǎnshī). This is the outline of the story.
We know the similar scheme on the other films. However, this film was already made in 1977. Thus, this film can be one of the originators of 80s 殭屍 variants. 趕屍 is a word of 湘西. It indicates almost 殭屍 (Jiangshi).
The leading actress is 秦夢. Her role name is the same as her actress name. She is a human, she is just masquerading as ghost. However, she has the supernatural power. She can fly and disappear suddenly. The blades or spears can’t harm her. No one can explain what’s happening.
Too strong enemies.
This film is very brutal. I don’t talk about the story, it’s about the film editing. The film editing of this film is brutal. Above all, the fight scenes are rough till savage.
The big problem is, the heroes are almost incapable of Kung Fu. I saw that the enemies have superior combat techniques. One by one, the enemies appear jumping in from the outside of the screen with maximum shout. That’s much powerful and dynamic than the heroes. The director shows his talents on wrong scenes.
Who is one’s brother, father or cousin…
The detail of the story is not explained. But, the unknown newcomers appear continuously. And the story advances with full speed.
I suppose that the three robbers were urgently added on the spot. They have no importance on the story. They are just the comic reliefs. I suppose that the producer wanted some comical elements. So, the director screwed them into the story against his will.
Because of these three robbers, the middle stage of the story got complex. I can’t understand who is one’s brother or father or cousin…
Please read if you’ve already watched this film
The master of Kung Fu gives the hero a secret letter. The letter indicates using the element "Flame" and "Water". This is the only way to beat up the invincible villain.
I imagined that it claimed 龍 (Dragon). In Asia, the dragon is the god of water. And the dragon has the fire breath. In the 五拳, there is dragon style. It’s the famous style of 少林寺 and 洪拳 that we see often in a film.
In result. First, the hero poured the oil to the villain and lighted him the fire. The villain was burned. This is the element "Flame". Next, the hero suicides diving into the lake with the villain. This is the element "Water".
Well done. Kung Fu is quite useless before this great story.
The letend of living corps.
I don’t know from where the Japanese distributor imported this film. The Japanese version has the title 湘西趕屍. It’s presented as an alternative title on HKMDB and 百度百科, but I think that this is the original Taiwanese title.
After the original title is shown, English title appears on the screen. "The letend of living corps". WTH. At least, the word "Letend" doesn’t exist in English as I know.