Chinese Super Ninja (1982)
“Loss of a fight means death to a Samurai”
In concept Chinese Super Ninja is a martial arts enthusiast’s dream come true. Here you have Kung Fu, the mother of all fighting forms going up against Ninjitsu, the most exotic of the fighting forms. Well concept is great but the execution… not so much.
Ninjas representing the five elements holding down various turf that a trio of Chinese kung fu masters have to traverse. You know I am not sure if video games had transcended past the likes of Pong back then, but Chang Cheh must have channeled the future with this one. Each area had a difficult band of ninjas, complete with dirty tricks and special moves, their defeat only attainable by figuring out their weakness – sling mud at the gold, hold your ground versus water and use the wind to put out fire’s smoke. Oh it was like a difficult platform video game, and of course at the end, there’s the master – who not only mastered all elements, his Japanese karate has known no match!
The Chinese take on ninjas are as spectacular back then as the modern versions of them here in the United States. The ninjas fight like demons and are scary in their art of deception. From the beginning of Chinese Super Ninja there is non-stop fighting, with the first being a huge tournament pitting Chinese Kung Fu masters against Bushido experts from Japan. The Chinese dominate the Japanese school, prompting them to unleash their secret wweapon – a real honest to god Samurai! Well after he is beaten and commits sepuku, it starts a war between the two countries. To get revenge for his loss of face, the Japanese master sends for a clan of ninja to come into China and eliminate his offenders.
Any Shaw Scope fan will tout Chinese Super Ninja as a must-see, right alongside The Five Deadly Venoms and many of their other classics. While the special effects are hilarious when compared to today’s film, the wire work and editing, especially during the water ninja scenes deserve props. Add this to your collection and you will not be upset, top notch fighting and an awesome story make Chinese Super Ninja great.