This is classic 80's Hong Kong action cinema: take a paper thin premise, barely sketch out a coherent plot, recruit some incredible fighters, then get your friends, the stunt guys, and members of the crew to play any other needed roles, scrape up a bare minimum of cash, and start shooting! This film practically redefines low budget-- The costuming is so minimal, it looks like most of the actors were just shot in the clothes they came to work in. Cynthia Rothrock, the lead female, appears in a ludicrous procession of color-coordinated, shoulder-padded outfits that look like she discovered the softer side of Sears. The makeup and grooming of the actors is horrible- in some close-ups you can see a couple big zits on Yuen Biao's face, just begging to be popped!
The premise is a throw away: a disillusioned lawyer takes the law into his own hands, coming up against gangsters and a crooked cop. The characters lack any and all coherent motivation or consistent behavior. The narrative is so sloppy and disjointed, in many places, you'll be scratching your head wondering how one event even connects to another. For example, by the end of the movie, our heroes, Cynthia Rothrock and Yuen Biao, are pursuing a crooked police captain. How and why they find this police captain suddenly moonlighting as an airplane mechanic, in a hanger where his coworkers are apparently also his paid henchmen, is never explained in any way. Clearly there was no thought whatsoever behind it, except it sets up the showpiece stunt in which the guy takes off in a plane as Biao is dragged down the runway and 4,000 feet into the air on the end of a rope!
But that stunt, among the zillions of others, is truly amazing. And so are the fights. Cynthia Rothrock is unbelievable in this movie, showing so much power and determination in her fight scenes. The battle between her and Biao inside a small apartment is jaw dropping, and it is only one of several equally impressive throw-downs. Yuen Biao is just as compelling, at least physically speaking, as Jackie Chan or Sammo Hung, bringing an incredibly lithe, limber, and whip-like power to his movements.
Those stunts and fights are clearly the reason this film was made, the only thing the creators put any effort into, and the only reasons to see this movie. If you really love wacky HK humor, you might also get a kick out of the antics of Corey Yuen-Kwai who plays Rothrock's Pigpen-like parter on the police force. (Yuen-Kwai also directed this movie, and also directed some of the Transporter movies--films similarly lacking coherent plot or characters!) But the weird thing is, so many people are killed in this movie, in such merciless ways, that all the wacky humor totally undermines any sense of drama or pathos. The actors certainly don't help, as they are incapable of expressing any true grief, as one-by-one, every character in the film is killed off! (and their family and friends too!)
Rated against other movies in the genre, this film really doesn't deserve 4 stars. But I'm giving extra points for the historical importance of the Biao/Rothrock match-up, as well as the presence of a couple other American fighters playing villians in the movie. Point as well are due for the simple, gleeful cheesiness and innocent exuberance that infuses this mess with a energy that makes American actioners of the same period look flaccid by comparison.