HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Cryptozoo
Weathering with You
Rim of the World
Love & Basketball
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time
Trapped
We Need to Do Something
Falbalas
Vanguard
A-X-L
Injustice
Bigfoot Hunters
Armitage III: Polymatrix
Girls Nite Out
Moxie!
Five Women for the Killer
Dolce Vita, La
Pig
I Am Belmaya
Lodger, The
Show, The
Beta Test, The
Medium, The
John and the Hole
Survivalist, The
Ape Woman, The
Black Widow
Cop Secret
Dark Eyes of London, The
V/H/S/94
Fay Grim
Night of the Animated Dead
Freshman Year
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions
Anne at 13,000 Ft.
Even Mice Belong in Heaven
Death Screams
Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr.
Demonia
East, The
   
 
Newest Articles
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
   
 
  Peacock King, The Who Ya Gonna Call? Yuen Biao!
Year: 1989
Director: Simon Nam
Stars: Yuen Biao, Gloria Yip, Pauline Wong, Hiroshi Mikami, Narumi Yasuda, Ken Ogata, Gordon Liu, Tonpei Hidari, Hong Li, Eddy Ko, Bun Yuen
Genre: Horror, Action, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: At an archaelogical dig which has uncovered a huge stone pot, strange events are occuring. The object is actually a gateway to Hell, and one night it breaks open to reveal Ashura (Gloria Yip), the Virgin of Hell and indeed the daughter of the King of Hell, accompanied by her guardian, and they declare that the world will soon be laid to waste in an Armageddon for all its wickedness and immorality. The archaelogists shoot at the figures with machine guns, but it's to no avail, and the devastating promise is backed up with a multitude of explosions. Only two people can stop this: a Tibetan monk, Peacock (Yuen Biao) and a Japanese monk, Lucky Fruit (Hiroshi Mikami) - but will be able to hold back the forces of evil?

Who combines machine guns with archaeology anyway? Well, to say that in this film they do should tell you all you need to know about Peacock King, a co-production between Japan and Hong Kong that was based on Makoto Ogino's comic book, which in turn was based on legend. As usual with this sort of thing, the mythology you have to take for granted and let the characters get on with picking their way through the absurd storyline, because Kujaku รด, as it was known in Japan, is somewhat less than serious, even if it does take the business of Hell with appropriate gravity.

The other big influence on this film would appear to be Ghostbusters, with Yuen Biao in the Bill Murray role as the wisecracking Tibetan monk. There is a Sigourney Weaver character in the form of Miss Okada (Narumi Yasuda), but as both her leading men are religious types, there's not so much as a whiff of romance between any of them, not even a love triangle. Okada works at the Tokyo department store where a dinosaur exhibition is being set up, but is unaware that this store is really a gateway to Hell - I'm sure we've all been in shops like that.

Lucky Fruit shows up in Tokyo, noting the stop motion animated plasticine that is littering the streets (he feeds them to a dog) as proof of demonic intent, and shows up at the store to persuade its manager to let him exorcise the place. After seeing a beastie on Okada's shoulder, the manager agrees, and not before time as Okada is nearly grabbed by a huge claw in the locker room. Much flinging about of magic spells ensues, and Peacock makes his presence felt when he appears in the nick of time to close the gateway, but alas there's still a portal in Hong Kong that needs seeing to.

However, there's a twist in that Ashura is quite a nice person, and Peacock realises she should be saved from her devilish duties before the King of Hell can get his hands on her. After causing chaos at a fairground, Ashura is persuaded to give up her life of evil, but her guardian, Raga (Pauline Wong) has other ideas. The effects reflect the film as a whole, with more enthusiasm than skill as Raga, for example, does an impression of The Thing and mutates into a huge-mouthed creature that chomps on a few unlucky extras, but the effects are the best reason to watch, as martial arts fans will be let down that there's only one hand-to-hand combat sequence in the whole movie. Thoroughly silly, The Peacock King should appeal to those who prefer the cheesy side of cinema. Music by Micky Yoshino.

[The Hong Kong Legends DVD includes an interview with Yuen Biao where he says that the film will be best enjoyed by people who don't think (!), an interview with him about Zu: Warriors from the Magic Mountain, and trailers.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3689 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: