and a smattering of blatant sexism and racism
- this film has it all!
Hammer (of horror movie fame) teams up with the Shaw Brothers (martial arts movies) to make the fantastic, horror, ninja, breast-filled "Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires". Filmed in Hong Kong in 1971, this British film starring Peter Cushing (whose face resembles a skull with skin hanging off it) is a famous vampire hunter named Van Helsing.
This film flopped in Britain, and was released in the U.S. as "Seven Brothers Against Dracula"
The following is a rundown of the story, so if you don't want this marvel of a movie ruined, read no further...
The story starts in Transylvania in 1804 where a Chinese monk wakes up Count Dracula to tell him that the Seven Golden Vampires have been destroyed. Dracula, as you can imagine, is pretty miffed at this, and decides to use the monk's body instead of his own, and in a cloud of swirling smoke and flashy light effects, teleports into his body to teach him a lesson.
Enter our hero Van the Man 100 years later, lecturing in China (in English), where he is laughed at for his tales of demons and wanquishing wampires. Meanwhile Van's son is trying to bag a buxom blond Scandinavian woman, who is extremely rich and kicking back in the backwaters of China. One of the classic racist remarks from her is "...better an English Gentleman than a Chinese scoundrel".
One of the students at Van's lecture happens to be from a family of ninjas who are keen on vanquishing the Seven Golden Vampires, and team up with Van to kick some ghoul-ass.
Van's son brings home the blond, who hears about their plot to take on the vampires and decides to fund the trip for them. Van tells her that she can't come however as "...it is far too dangerous for a woman" but she tags along anyways.
Just out of town the band of ninjas, along with Van, his son, and the blondie, run into a pack of evil ninjas, and have a chance to show off their kung-fu. They kick their butt, with loads of jumping, shouting, and what can only be described as close-ups of cum-faces as they die.
They make camp, and Van's son, obvious that he's getting nowhere with the Swede, decides to make moves on the ninja's sister, who is a bit more accepting of his moves than the blondie. The Swedish girl, in turn, starts muscling in on one of the ninjas. It's so womantic!
So they trudge on and camp in a cave where they're attacked in the night and kill off three of the Golden Vampires. The special effects are outstanding, as the rubber masks are sucked inwards by an unseen hand inside them.
They move on to a village which is constantly being attacked by the vampires, and the young woman are having their shirts ripped off and are taken away to be tied down and thrash around in a mammary-frenzy. The heroes and set up sharp spikes, and a trench of flammable stuff in preparation for the fight. The vampires come that night and a battle of mammoth proportions ensues, in which most of the ninjas are killed. The blondie is bitten and turns instantly into a vampire, who in turn bites her beau, one of the ninjas. He shoves her onto one of the spikes and then himself onto the same spike where they die in each other's arms - oh so valiant.
So finally they kill all but one of the vampires, but that one steals Van's son's girl (the female ninja) and races back to Dracula's castle (just over the hill) where he ties her down, but doesn't rip her top off. He is killed pretty much straight away when they reach the castle 5 seconds later, and they all start walking out victorious - except ol' Van-baby.
Van sees Dracula who changes back out of his monk body, back to himself for a final battle which lasts all of about 3 seconds.
I laughed, I cried, I laughed some more, then finally passed out from excess laughter. Brilliant movie, one which deserves a special drinking-game made up for it.