Pearls among swine. I try and avoid any HK films
distributed by Arena like I do a homeless guy sleeping on the NY subway.
Arena is a total exploitation company – usually distributing pirated films
under different misleading come-on titles. This is certainly the case here.
This film has been issued under the name “Jackie Chan’s Crime Force” and
on the back actually states “Includes priceless footage of Jackie Chan
locked in mortal combat with an amazon killer”. Jackie Chan has about as
much to do with this film as I do – he is nowhere to be seen with the exception
of a Sally Yeh musical video that is at the beginning of the tape ! It
is kind of interesting, but has nothing to do with the film. But I knew
that coming in. I had read in Oriental Magazine that this film was actually
Amazon Commando – aka Golden Queen’s Commando – and was thrilled with the
discovery. I have been searching for this film for quite a while with no
luck. This version is dubbed and is quite poor quality – but beggars can’t
always be choosers.
The reason that I wanted this film so badly
is that it has both Brigitte Lin and Sally Yeh in it a few years before
they appeared together in the classic Peking Opera Blues. And it sounded
so trashy and cheesy and it was, but in a wonderful B-movie way. Mixing
disparate film genres such as women in prison, war movies, James Bond and
westerns, it becomes totally infectious as the film progresses. In many
ways it is a really bad film – but I found myself completely enjoying it.
The film focuses on seven women all criminals
and as in all those type films – it introduces them one by one and the
crime they committed. So there is a drunken female samurai who needs to
drink to fight and they completely copy a scene with Dean Martin from the
film Rio Bravo in which he goes into a spittoon to get money to buy a drink.
Among the others are Amazon a tatooed woman with enormous strength, Black
Cat a sharpshooter with a punk hairdo, Quick Silver a quick handed thief,
Sugar a prostitute with a Scarlett O'Hara accent, Dynamite (Sally Yeh)
an explosives expert and finally Black Fox – Brigitte Lin – in a Snake
All of them have been captured and are in jail
guarded by Chinese actors in German Nazi uniforms. I don’t think there
was exactly a big budget for this film and any spare uniforms were appropriated
! It turns out though that Black Fox got herself arrested on purpose so
that she could break the other six out of jail and use their services for
a secret mission. With the help of female charms and some deadly chopsticks,
they break out of prison but the forces of a Warlord are sent after them.
At this point, the film decides to become a western
as the women escape on horses and the Warlord’s men decide to chase after
them on horses. Music from the Spaghetti western music of Morricone accompanies
all this. The secret mission that Brigitte has enlisted them in is to blow
up a chemical weapons factory that the rebels have built. When they finally
fight their way there - they find a Blowfeldt type fellow with a cat on
his lap and the lab consisting of a few test tubes. Again not a big budget
But it was a lot of silly fun and both Brigitte
and Sally look very young and very lovely. There is actually a sequel to
this film called Pink Force Commando. I wonder what title Arena will release
that one in – perhaps “Jet Li’s Tai Chi Pink Master” !