Lady Constables

What a terrifically fun film this is to watch with nearly wall to wall action from start to finish. The fighting is inventive with a lot of interesting twists and a fair amount of wires being used. I haven’t seen wires utilized nearly as much in any other of the Angela Mao films that I have seen, but it is quite fun to see her somersault over her enemies or jump up into a tree to escape their blows. And as a bonus, not only do we get the wonderful presence of Angela, but also another of the better known female film warriors of that time, Judy Lee.

With slight echoes of the Good, the Bad and the Ugly, the film begins with the four bosses robbing the five shining pearls and killing the escorts. They then divide the booty and split off in different directions. There soon appear on their trail three separate individuals looking to track them down and capture them.

Angela Mao is the sheriff of the area in which the robbery took place. This is a different side to Angela than I have seen before. She has a bit of a mean streak as we first come across her torturing two suspects with a bamboo stake see-saw contraption. As she says later in the film “I don’t really like killing. I prefer torture”. Go Angela ! Other than her usual assortment of deadly kicks and punches, she also has these scarves that she shoots out from her sleeves to entwine her victims.
The second person chasing after the bad guys is Judy Lee – who had a relative killed in the attack – and is looking for revenge. Her weapon of choice is a twirling baton type object and she travels nowhere without a coffin at the ready for her enemies.
Finally the third hunter is the silent bodyguard of the Prince – who owns the pearls. He never talks – though he points out that he can – he just doesn’t like to. So he communicates by various scrolls and always seems to have the proper one at hand to unfurl. His sword is also always near by with which he is quite deadly.
The three fight among themselves almost as much as with their enemies – and form shifting alliances – but slowly they track down the bosses and their gangs  – one by one. Each little fight has something fun about it and the film rarely lets up for more than a few minutes.
As usual with these films, one has to wade through dreadfully dubbed dialogue. I lost count of the number of times in which Angela tells the other two – “I’m capturing these guys, you two stay out of the way”. I only wonder if it’s just as bad in Chinese.
Bad guy - Chang Yi
Judy Lee is very impressive in this film with her wonderful twirling, killing baton. According to Deadly China Dolls, she was a classmate of Angela at the opera school. She made over sixty films and won the Golden Horse award in a film called The Escape. She retired from films in the early 1980’s.