Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain

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Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain
Hong Kong promotional release poster
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese新蜀山劍俠
Simplified Chinese新蜀山剑侠
Directed byTsui Hark
Written byShui Chung-yuet
Sze-to Cheuk-hon
Based onLegend of the Swordsmen of the Mountains of Shu
by Huanzhulouzhu
Produced byRaymond Chow
StarringSammo Hung
Yuen Biao
Brigitte Lin
Adam Cheng
Moon Lee
Judy Ongg
CinematographyBill Wong
Edited byPeter Cheung
Music byKwan Sing-yau
Tang Siu-lam
Paragon Films Ltd.
Distributed byGolden Harvest
Release date
  • 5 February 1983 (1983-02-05)
Running time
98 minutes
CountryHong Kong

Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain (Chinese: 新蜀山劍俠) is a 1983 Hong Kong supernatural wuxia fantasy film directed by Tsui Hark and based on the xianxia novel Legend of the Swordsmen of the Mountains of Shu by Huanzhulouzhu. The film has been noted for combining elements of Hong Kong action cinema with special effects technology provided by a team of Western artists including Robert Blalack.[1] It served as an influence for the 1986 American film Big Trouble in Little China.

Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain received five nominations at the 3rd Hong Kong Film Awards: Best Action Choreography for Corey Yuen, Best Actress for Brigitte Lin, Best Art Direction for William Chang, Best Film Editing for Peter Cheung, and Best Picture.


During the Sixteen Kingdoms period, Qiao Shu [zh] army deserter Dik Ming-kei, who was chased by vampires in the mountain of Zu, is rescued by Master Ding Yan and becomes his pupil. When they were ambushed by the Blood Devil, devil chaser Siu Yu and his pupil Yat Jan came to their assistance. They managed to hold off the Blood Devil but they need to find the Dual Swords to destroy it.

Master Ding took the wounded Siu Yu to Celestial Fort and sought help from the Mistress, but he was poisoned by the Blood Devil and he surrendered to the Dark Force. Will Ming-kei and Yat Jan find the Dual Swords and destroy the Blood Devil?


Reception and influence[edit]

In a 1991 Fangoria article by Tim Paxton and Dave Todarello, Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain is referred to as "a film which freely intertwines Chinese myth and lore with Hollywood special FX and comic-book action. It's the proverbial rollercoaster of kung fu, magic, monsters, humor, tension, visual spectacle and gruesome bits."[2]

Craig Lines of Den of Geek wrote that Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain "was a significant film for the Hong Kong 'New Wave' movement that revolutionized the industry in the late '70s", characterized by "young filmmakers [who] broke free from the traditional studio system to create weird, energetic and experimental movies".[1] Lines praised the actors' performances and the martial arts choreography, and noted the film's "warm, full-hearted message of kindness and acceptance".[1]

The film is considered an influence on John Carpenter's 1986 film Big Trouble in Little China.[1]

Home media[edit]

The U.K. release of the DVD by Hong Kong Legends features an audio commentary with Tsui Hark and film critic Bey Logan.

The Hong Kong release of the DVD by Fortune Star Media features the Cantonese version of the film's trailer, as well as an interview with actor Yuen Biao.


  1. ^ a b c d Lines, Craig (2 July 2018). "Zu: The Movie That Inspired Big Trouble In Little China". Den of Geek. Retrieved 1 February 2020.
  2. ^ Paxton, Tim; Todarello, Dave (October 1991). "From Asia with Blood - Part One". Fangoria. No. 107. Starlog Group, Inc. p. 58. ISSN 0164-2111.

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