I'm not going to discuss why "Flash Future Kung Fu" is beloved to me. I'll just say it holds a special place in my heart for many reasons, most of which are not "good" in the traditional sense of the word. Wopsploitation wrote about its many wonders here and Chopsticks on Fire has fun with it here. I may write about it later.
|I like the "Blade Runner"-inspired sets.|
Anyway, on to the point of my post. There seems to be only one version available - the Ocean Shores dvd you can pick up super cheap on Amazon. It is dubbed, cropped, faded and cut, rendering this already wild and unruly film impossibly awful to watch. While I highly don't recommend this version, it is probably the one you are going to end up with so please keep the detracting qualities in mind while you view it.
There is another version which, as far as I know, is not at all available for purchase - this is the Ocean Shores Cantonese print (without subtitles). Yes, I have seen it because I was bestowed this heavenly gift by a special person who must remain anonymous in case you seige his/her castle with requests. Sorry.
The print quality is much, much better. The image below is something I never even noticed in the dubbed version.
|This moment might be stylish and dramatic on the big screen.|
Sadly, the Cantonese version is still cropped, which means we experience intimate emotional moments with the cheekbones of Ko Hung and Wang Lung Wei:
|wtf Ocean Shores, where my boyz at?|
Here are some title cards you don't see on the crappy Ocean Shores English dub copy.
|Kirk Wong's future world has Nazi symbols for a reason I am still unable to grasp.|
The above title card is "Da Leuih Toih" ("Fight in the Ring") AND IS NOT CALLED 'HEALTH WARNING' AS GOOGLE, AMAZON, MOVIE REVIEWERS AND OTHER PEOPLE KEEP SAYING SO DON'T CALL IT THAT ANYMORE, STOP IT, THANKS.
And here is the production company information card for movie nerd friends. Do with it what you will.
And here is the final card:
It doesn't say "The End" in Chinese; it says "There will be more...". kinda like "To Be Continued..." I wish. A sequel would have been fucking awesome.
Okay, so now here's the final real reason for my post.
In both versions there are two prologue cards cut into the opening sequence. This prologue is not subtitled or narrated. Once I got serious about "Flash Future Kung Fu" and wanted to go steady with it, I was not able to sleep until I knew what this says. I had to try to translate it for myself and for the millions who also love this film. The translation below is a rough approximate. I beg you to correct my errors.
At the edge of this martial club world, the "Jing [Upright] Martial Club" upheld their mighty task of developing orthodox martial virtues. Many were trained under their strict, sincere rules. The background for the sudden rise of the "Culture Society" is unclear. Members were trained with science and pharmaceuticals, and a decadent lifestyle was used to attract the new generations. Their power rapidly expanded.
Welp, not a whole lot you hadn't already figured out. I was hoping for an explanation for stuff like the Nazi symbols but there is none.
At this point, having seen "Flash Future Kung Fu" at least seven happy, happy times, I come to the conclusion that the Ocean Shores version has been cut (edited for content). Why? Because the villain is missing. The story is a typical "old versus new/east versus west" revenge flick. They never just leave the villain out of a movie. That is simply not Hong Kong style. Cutting also explains the non-sequitur plot implosions. Until we have evidence to the contrary, don't judge too harshly Kirk Wong Ji Keung's cropped, dubbed, cut, faded movie.
|I am throwing my arm in front of "Flash Future Kung Fu" just like Wang Lung Wei does for Lam Hoi Ling.|
Until next time, joi gin!