The Boxer's Omen (1983)

Genres - Action  |   Sub-Genres - Martial Arts  |   Run Time - 99 min.  |   Countries - Hong Kong  |   MPAA Rating - R
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The Boxer's Omen has long had a reputation for outrageousness with horror addicts and Asian film fans alike. Those unfamiliar with the film will be happy to know that the film truly lives up to that reputation, delivering a string of jaw-dropping magic-oriented horror sequences that deliver a few films' worth of creatures, bloodcurdling transformations and psychedelic gore. It also boasts a unique plot built on not one but two revenge scenarios and some kickboxing filmed in a style reminiscent of Raging Bull. That said, the film is built on the ebb and flow of its horrific moments and director Kuei Chih-Hung handles these moments with a deft touch, making excellent use of grandiose sets and colored lighting to create a mood of candy-colored surrealism for all the scary goings-on. The characterizations are a bit simplistic and the story starts to drag a little bit in its last third but any complaints are wiped out by the finale, which presents a uniquely Buddhist slant on the concept of a battle between two wizards. Ultimately, The Boxer's Omen might be a little too eccentric and intense for some viewers but horror fans looking for their equivalent of a "head movie" will adore this film for its singular mix of Western horror-movie shocks and Asian mysticism.