Screened as part of NZIFF 2004

Blood Brothers 1973

Ci Ma

Directed by Zhang Che

Hong Kong In Mandarin with English subtitles
117 minutes CinemaScope



Ni Kuang
Zhang Che


Gong Muduo


Guo Dinghong


Chen Yongyu


David Jiang Dawei
Di Long
Chen Guandai
Jing Li


“This widescreen epic of love, loyalty and betrayal is based on actual events surrounding the assassination of a general in the waning years of the Qing Dynasty. According to the story, the general was killed by one of his right-hand men who was avenging a brother. This retelling finds David Jiang Dawei and newcomer Chen Guandai as bandit brothers who befriend the mercenary warrior Di Long after trying to rob him. The stage is set for tragedy when Di Long falls for Chen’s neglected wife… This threesome whose devotion grows into jealousy, treachery and revenge prefigures John Woo’s Bullet in the Head, and indeed Woo served as an assistant on Blood Brothers.” — David Pendleton, Heroic Grace  

“With its rapid pans and zooms, bloody fisticuffs and garish, rock-influenced score, Blood Brothers is representative of the more brutal style adopted by kung fu filmmakers in the wake of Bruce Lee’s international success. Yet the carefully judged performances lend the fight scenes the same gravitas as the battles in an Akira Kurosawa epic.” — Jason Anderson, Eye Weekly