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Rated R
Copyright 1982 New Line Productions.
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Lee Ho - Warrior for Ling Chang Kung, has his arms removed for some reason.
  • Kung Suh Ching - Another warrior who has acid poured on his legs for "knowing too much."
  • A Pao - Provincial government official sent to stop Ling Chang Kung.
  • Master - Old Kung Fu master, he decides to teach Lee Ho and Kung Suh Ching martial arts and harmony.
  • Mr. Pao - Goon for Ling Chang Kung who spends the movie getting beat up.
  • Black and White - Two warriors working for Ling Chang Kung, Black is the dude with the eyebrows.
  • Ling Chang Kung - Evil warlord with a metal hump on his back. (I dunno, don't ask me.)

Buy It!

The Plot: 

Who in the world came up with the premise of two kung fu masters overcoming terrible physical disabilities and defeating the forces of an evil warlord (at times not even single handed)? Rhetorical question in a country with what must be a generous supply of opiates I'm sure.

Ling Chang Kung is a merciless ruler, disposing of his retainers' limbs at the slightest provocation and using his superior fighting skills to smash any opposition. Apparently born with a ferrous lump in his back, the warlord is an amazing example of "hunch fu." That would be using your metallic hunchback to block attacks and even deliver devastating counter strikes! Hehehehehe!

Wait! It gets even better! Our two heroes are overcoming their recent pruning by Ling Chang Kung and are accomplished warriors in their own right. Under the careful physical therapy of the Master (who spends his off time folded up inside of wicker baskets) they have perfected handicap fu! Kung Suh Ching and Lee Ho are truly amazing, just watching the latter twirl around a bamboo staff without any arms is impressive, but then he starts kicking the crap out of bad guys!

With A Pao's help the pair steal the Eight Jade Horses from Ling Chang Kung. With these ancient figurines they hope to learn unbeatable kung fu, which will be needed after their hiding place is discovered. Maybe I'm being a bit charitable in saying "hiding place," since we are talking about pre-contact China. More like their hut is out in the middle of nowhere, so who is going to find them anyway?

The fight scenes are completely over the top, as you would expect with the styles previously described, and the dubbed dialog is standard for the genre (which means silly). All of this makes for a great deal of mindless fun which should offend your sensibilities, but be impossible not to chuckle during.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Having both your arms cut off produces very little blood.
  • A removed arm will leave a, well um, heck - it's a nub.
  • Dramatic music doesn't go well with close-ups of rice.
  • Evil warlords tend to be deformed, have a hunchback, or sport some weird thing under the eye - that sort of stuff.
  • Feudal China possessed concentrated acid capable of rendering a man legless.
  • Antique shops specializing in ceramics are seldom successful in fu flicks.
  • Kung Fu kicks or punches make sounds like beating curtains with a broom.
  • Everybody in China knows kung fu and are measured by their prowess.
  • A man walking on his hands can outrun most guards.
  • It is possible to beat someone to death with your ass or humped back.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • Opening scenes - Oh boy, dubbing is going to be an issue, buckle up friends.
  • 26 mins - You're looking at the beginning of hackey sack.
  • 30 mins - Why do these fight scenes seem so jumpy? It's almost like they shoot some film, stop, then try to get back in the same places and start again...
  • 30 mins - Notice the metallic "tang" sound every time he gets hit on the hump.
  • 52 mins - Kung Suh Ching is kicking butt with a wicker hat?
  • 64 mins - Wiggly camera!
  • 77 mins - Look out, he'll hit you with the hump! Oops, too late.
  • 80 mins - A basket just rolls into the room and these rocket scientists think there might be jewels or gold in it?

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note cripmasters1.wav Lee Ho: "I don't know what I can say, but if I don't die, I will be a success."
Green Music Note cripmasters2.wav Ling Chang Kung: "You fool! Let me show you how to collect rent."
Green Music Note cripmasters3.wav Ling Chang Kung: "You are normally very stupid, but this time you have devised a very good plan."
Green Music Note cripmasters4.wav Master: "Eight Jade Horses hold many secrets. If one can only understand them and use them, a man could create unbeatable kung fu."

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipcripmasters1.mpg - 2.8m
Black and White try to take on the Crippled Masters, this is a true example of "two arms and legs are not better than none."

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 6
The Crippled Masters
Reply #17. Posted on May 17, 2000, 07:29:14 PM by Bowieism
oh my god!!! this movie is the f**king best!!! it's definitely the funniest movie i've ever seen!!! i was rolling on the floor armless guy wears a legless guy as a backpack to some kick ass. what more does one need for entertainment?? i had to buy it immediately!!!
The Crippled Masters
Reply #18. Posted on April 29, 2000, 01:05:24 AM by
I am currently watching this film for the first timeon TNT as I write this....this is by far the goofiest thing I've ever seen on TV!!!!  Me and my roomate are stuck in for the night all bored, channel surfing, When the 2 guys are training and they tie up the old master, I almost p**sed my pants, does it get cheesier than this?
The Crippled Masters
Reply #19. Posted on July 19, 2000, 01:28:43 AM by Steve
Me and my friend saw this movie about a year back and it is the most amazingly stupid movie I have ever seen. And I loved it! I couldn't stop laughing at the two handi-cripples beating the crap out of the worthless bad guys. I sat there laughing until tears ran down my cheeks. I mean you have this guy with this little chicken wing arm that looks like he stole it out of a bucket of KFC and this other guy with these worthless legs that that looks like sausage links that runs around on his hands like a damn monkey. This is definately one of my favorite kung fu movies of all time. If there's a movie that could someone laugh until they they s**t their pants this is the movie!!
The Crippled Masters
Reply #20. Posted on September 18, 2000, 12:28:24 AM by Reno
This has to be one of the funniest movies I have ever seen.  The people who think this movie sucks, well... I don't know how you can not laugh your ass off at this movie.  It truly ranks among the top five movies the entire world must see.
The Crippled Masters
Reply #21. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Gabriele Sposito

 It is the most romantic martial arts love story I ever  seen in my life, beside the fact that Meg Ryan wasn't in the Film. I love handicapped cripple like I love black death
The Crippled Masters
Reply #22. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Shark
This is, in my opinion, the greatest martial arts movie of all time.  It's got all the cliche plot lines, combined with incredible comedy.

That nub is freakin' awesome!

I wish I knew the next time it would be on television--I really want a copy, but don't think I can bring myself to pay for it.

Kind of wierd considering that I think it is the greatest martial arts movie of all time, but if you've seen it, I think you understand.
The Crippled Masters
Reply #23. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Buster Gates
Greetings: Until I saw Crippled Masters, I thought I had a firm grasp on what was and was not "inappropriate".  Incongruity might be a better word for this dilemma.  On the other hand, it sheds a whole new light on the issue of hero worship and the possibilities for professional poster children.  No telling where one of Jerry's more enterprising kids could take a movement like this.  For promotional purposes though I think CM could generate the buzz it trukly needs by exposure on a site like, and  

The Crippled Masters
Reply #24. Posted on July 17, 2002, 01:15:18 AM by travis
this was the funniest movie i have ever seen. i was about to pee my pants and crap myself at the sound effects and terrible martial arts.things that were good about the movie...the nub guy was good with a stick. and watch out for the guy with no legs, he might hit u with his lawnmower attack(which sound lick a cat in a garbage disposal). in my opinion, if u want good action look...anywhere else, but if u want a good laugh, buy this movie.
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