Five Fingers of Death – Martial Arts Movie

Martial Arts Movie – King Boxer/5 Fingers of Death


Movie Review and Information with photos from the movie.

Produced by Run Run Shaw in 1972 this movie earned the title of the first international kung fu classic, and stared a slew of other kung fu movies that cannot match the shear violence and power exhibited in this film. Find out how this movie stacks up to other great martial arts movies, view still photos and video clips from the awesomely brutal Kung Fu cult classic King Boxer.


Lo Lieh

Tung Lam

James Nam Gung Fan

Fang Mien

Wong Chin Feng

Wong Ping

Tien Feng

Chiu Hung

Goo Man Chung

Chan Shen

5 Fingers of Death Trailer

Cast and Crew

Click thumbnail to view full-size


Ge-Hou has his life training in the martial arts and has fallen in love with teacher’s daughter Yin-Yin. After an exhibition match with a former student his teacher sends him to study under a superior teacher, Shen Chin-Pei. He instructs Ge-Hou to learn from Chin-Pei and win the upcoming tournament.

When A rouge fighter defeats Chin-Pei students and hits him with a sneak attack injuring him severely, Ge-Hou goes and beats up the rouge fighter and upon hearing this Chin-Pei decided to teach Chi-Hao his most deadly secret, the Iron Fist.

The top fighter at Chin-Pei school becomes jealous that Ge-Hou was chosen to learn the iron fist and conspires with the rival school to defeat him. He lures Ge-Hou into the forest; where Dung-Shun’s three new Japanese fighters ambush him and break both his hands so that he cannot learn the iron fist technique. This only slows him down but he soon regains his confidence and begins to train even harder.

Determined to win the tournament Dung-Shun the teacher of the rival bai-sung school sends his Japanese fighters to kill Ge-Hou on his way to the tournament, but his plans are foiled by his original thug, iron head Chen Lang who Ge-Hou defeated earlier. After a quick battle Ge-Hou kills two of the three Japanese fighters while the iron headed fighter takes on the lead Japanese fighter to allow Ge-Hou to make it to the tournament on time.

Soon after Chi-Hao wins the tournament but his teacher is stabbed by the Dung-Shun from the rival school. Ge-Hou finds out that Dung-Shun’s men also killed his former teacher. In rage he goes to destroy all that those that did him wrong, but is denied killing Dung-Shun since he decided to die by his own hands and stabbed himself before tasting the death blow of the iron fist.

As he leaves, the chief Japanese fighter arrives with Chen Lang’s head. The final battle begins with the Japanese fighter using his sword to get in a few good cuts on Chi-Hao. Soon the Iron Fist Technique is used on the Japanese fighter virtually sending him flying into a brick wall in which his body leaves hit with so much force breaks the wall itself. The Japanese fighter cannot withstand the blows of the iron fist and in a gut wrenching scene collapses. Victory belongs to Ge-Hou.

Get your original copy of 5 Fingers of Death

King Boxer Remastered to its original Glory

5 Fingers of Death / King Boxer Rating

The most destructive movie of it’s time. Awesome fight scenes and a plot that keeps the viewers interested from start to finish.

Choreography – 5

Character Building – 5

Cinematography – 5

Dialogue – 5

Locations – 4

Music – 5

Plot – 5

Wardrobe – 4

I give this movie 4.75 STARS –


How are movies rated

Martial arts movies are judged based on 8 different aspects of a movie

1 – Choreography

2 – Character Building

3 – Cinematography

4 – Dialogue

5 – Locations

6 – Music

7 – Plot

8 – Wardrobe

Each movie aspect gets a rating from 1 – 5, then the total score is added and divided by 8. This final number is the 5 star rating given to moves that i watch.

For example a movie may get these ratings:

Choreography – 3

Character Building – 2

Cinematography – 4

Dialogue – 2

Locations – 2

Music – 5

Plot – 2

Wardrobe – 3

Total 23

divided by 8

Total Rating 2.87 rounded up



The fight scenes in this movie may not be what modern movie watches are used to. Today Choreography is faster with far more movements. The fight scenes in this movie are far more practical and direct. Emphasis were placed on power and strength. The body movements were not fluid but the energy generated allowed the viewer to have some idea of the power used in each strike. Each blow that connected during fights were so severe that you as the viewer would not want to be in that persons shoe

Rating – 5

Character Building

The good guys and the bad guy were pretty apparent in this movie. there was no guessing which rolled any of the characters protrayed. The teachers were teachers and portrayed that confidence and authority, the student were students and portrayed that wanting to be the best in the eyes of their teacher and all other characters such as the hired Japanese fighters portrayed their roles well as professional fighters.

Rating – 5


Although this move is over 30 years old the cinematography is practically the same that you may find in modern movies. Wide angel views to get an overview of the location, close up shots to get personal with the actors and the occasional camera movement to associate speed or a sense of being on location. Interesting lighting techniques were used throughout the movie to set the mood of the scene, for example when the Star Chi-Hao uses the Iron Fist technique is hands would glow red, or when his Teacher dies a blue light is used on the Teacher to signify death. All in all this was a ground breaking movie by Shaw Brothers.

Rating – 5


Because this movie was direct the dialogue was kept to a minimum, nothing was said that didn’t needed to be said. Conversations between the characters build the relationships between those characters and allowed the viewer feel emotions towards each character. The dialogue also helped in building each character and bring out their true nature in the film.

Rating – 5


The location sets were well put together but were limited. Most of the fights and dialogue seemed centered with in a small enclosed location. Even the tournament arena seemed small/. The only time there was any idea or feeling of a large vast area were the short cuts of road travel. The longest outdoor scene took place with the fight between Ge hou and the Japanese fighters on the road heading to the tournament. The buildings and the homes were well designed but the overall move lacked a sense of time period or era.

Rating – 4


There wasn’t any theme song but there were times when a specific sound was played to let the viewer know that something was about to happen. The most noticeable sound was each time the iron palm technique was used a shrieking sound was used to signal its arrival.

Rating – 5


Wardrobe was plain and simple, nothing to signify luxury or status of each character. It may have been intentional on the behalf of the director to take focus away from any one character standing out from others. Since the movie was truly about a fighters life style, which is often humble there was no need for any extravagant dress.

Rating – 4

King Boxer Photo Gallery

Click thumbnail to view full-size

King Boxer end fight scene

Share this
Join the discussion

Further reading