Shaw Brothers studio in Hong Kong was well-known around the world mainly for its Kung Fu and action films but in the early 1980’s when censorship laws were slackened the studio produced a number of gory horror films which up until recently had not been seen much since there initial release.
One such controversial title was Seeding of a Ghost which stars Philip Kao Fei as taxi driver Chou Tung who seeks vengeance against the crazy hooligans that raped and killed his wife. Seeking revenge he asks the help of a demented magician who agrees to assist him in finding and punishing his wife’s rapists. But Chou must endure copulating dead bodies as his enemies perish in gut-wrenching, blood spurting and body exploding glory.
The film takes a while to get to the gory horror as we see the nasty rape of his wife and the anguish Chou has after the police refuse to help and think he may be the culprit. Once the horror sets in it is full of strange gory killings, a truly bizarre sex scene and a splatter-filled climax with not so convincing rubber effects obviously influenced by John Carpenters The Thing released a year earlier.
These films had a reputation among fans because they were never seen or released after the initial theatrical run in Hong Kong and were hardly ever shown outside that territory. Now we can see them in all the uncut gory glory, you do wonder at times what all the fuss was about, with a confusing storyline and disgustingly gooey, but poor, special effects. Fans will get some fun from the film and it is a good Friday night movie but don’t expect to be frightened at all.
The release by 88 Films is excellent with a very good 1080p remaster and looks in a very good condition, unlike some Hong Kong movie releases. Audio has original Cantonese with English subtitles which have a few mistakes and should have been caught in QC. (Some buyers have reported that early releases mistakenly had a Mandarin instead of a Cantonese track but my review copy was fine.)
Extras are an interesting overview of Hong Kong horror and its historical context by Calum Waddell and there is also a good Audio commentary by Bey Logan. A strange but entertaining Hong Kong horror and it is great to see these obscure titles getting a Blu Ray release in the UK.
FILM: 5 PICTURE: 8 AUDIO: 7 EXTRA: 7