An Eternal Combat (1984)

Plot: When a Taoist Priest – Cho-Lo (Lam Ching-Ying) and his two understudies (Parkman Wong and Shing Fiu-On) go on a quest to stop an Evil Japanese Ghost from killing villagers. They find themselves thrown one thousand years into modern day Hong Kong. Separated from his understudies, the priest ends up in a insane asylum when he tells people that he is a ‘Taoist Priest hunting down a Japanese Ghost’.

The Priest gets nicknamed ‘Teacher Hut’ by his asylum buddies and they even manage to help him escape from the asylum to search for his understudies. The Priest takes refuge in one of the asylum councilors homes, councilor Gigi (Joey Wong) believed in Cho-Lo’s story about the past and wants to help reunite him with his understudies, Wong and Ma.

Both Wong and Ma ended up arriving in a church, scared of their new surroundings they decide to hide in the church’s spare room, burning the bibles and cooking Cho-Lo’s carrier pigeons for food. The priests soon discover that the two are burning their precise bibles and throws them out on the streets looking for their teacher and something to eat!

Strangely enough the Japanese Ghost ended up at the Church the night both Wong and Ma arrived, but the power of a giant cross on stage absorbs him! The only way the ghost can get out is by possessing a human. The Ghost manages to posse the body of Gigi’s ex-boyfriend Ben (Anthony Wong). Now with the ghost taking over Ben, Cho-Lo and his disciples must save Gigi from the Ghost and find some way back to Ancient China.

Review: When looking at the movie, it doesn’t look like anything special. Yet it surely impressed me it reminded me of Ricky Lau’s ‘A Chinese Ghost Story’ being mixed in with Clarence Fok’s ‘Iceman Cometh’. Plus with the presence of Lam Ching-Ying playing a Taoist Priest never gets boring.

Other subplots include Anthony Wong’s character ‘Ben’ trying to get back together with Gigi and then attempts to rape her, Cho-Lo comes to her aid, but later leads to her kidnapping and Cho-Lo and his understudies go in for the rescue.

Any Guest appearances. Not many to be honest, we get a brief appearance from Philip Ko as the movie director in which Lam Ching-Ying’s character appears on his set and accidentally mistaking Anthony Wong’s character as the Japanese ghost and ends up attacking his ass with a sword.

Final thoughts? An Eternal Combat is a wonderful film, another rare gem of 90’s Hong Kong Cinema.

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