Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Martial Arts Carnage

A few days ago, I wrote about having bought the first season's worth of the Water Margin on DVD. The show was shown at least 3 times on TV from the early '70s to the early '80s, and on the last showing, at least, had been cut by at least 5 minutes per episode.

The cuts usually removed bits that might be considered to be a little gory - so when I saw that the package was digitally remastered, and given a 15 certificate, I'd hoped I was getting the complete version.

Alas, no!

Watching disk 2 last night, the flashback start of episode 4 showed Lin Chong's fatally wounded wife stumbling into the river, with the water going red all about her - but the previous episode had been entirely sanitized. Also missing from ep 4 was Hu San Niang's younger sister taking down all but one of the ruffians who accosted her using her blowpipe, leaving the last to cringe; and the confrontation between the sisters ("I am as good as you are, elder sister." "Go home anyway, younger sister." "Let's fight!" dagger parries darts and the elder sister betters the younger) leaving a scene where we see the elder holding a dagger at the younger's throat, and then the younger riding off with a comment of "She'll do what she's told, now." which would be mystifying to anyone who didn't remember 30 years back to the un-cut version.

Admittedly, having watched this sort of thing as a teen, it's possibly not surprising that I didn't find the rather clinical violence in Kill Bill to be particularly gruesome.

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