by John

Some men are all talk, no action. We can guarantee you this is not the case for Su Can and Wong Kei-Ying, two of the best Chinese martial arts fighters during the 19th century. Mr Su is a smart and ambitious man who loses everything after being dragged into a political conspiracy, while Mr Wong is a quiet and honest physician who finds himself embroiled in an opium war.

It is pretty clear these two gentlemen are good guys and would have no problems being friends, but what would happen if we put them in a friendly fight? It is a tough prediction, but here’s a lowdown of what would probably happen if exchanged blows. Sit back, relax and watch the sparks fly!

The Angst Within

In Master of the Drunken Fist: Beggar So, we see how the son of a wealthy merchant makes his way to become the Emperor’s top martial arts warrior, and loses it all when he gets unnecessarily involved in a plot between two political powers in the imperial court. Fortunately, he survives the ordeal, thanks to a gang of beggars. He begins seeking revenge by learning the Kung Fu style of the Drunken Fist.

Master of the Drunken Fist

In Master of the Shadowless Kick: Wong Kei-Ying, foreign powers are making things difficult for China in the late Qing Dynasty. Wong Kei-Ying wants to focus on seeing patients and saving lives, but somehow gets involved in a fight with a local opium gang. Manipulated by the new governor, Wong finds his loved ones involved in the mess. Oh, did we mention that his son is a certain Wong Fei-Hung?

Master of the Shadowless Kick

We think Su has the worse deal here. The dude had a bright future, but loses everything (including his family!) almost instantly. The anger bottled up in Su should give him an edge to pull some fierce punches. The very refined Wong may even empathise with his opponent’s unfortunate series of events. With emotions running high, we are betting on Su to pin Wong down!

The Action
Su’s drunken fighting is a visual spectacle. After being physically and mentally defeated, Su spends quite a bit of time trying to adapt. The Beggar Chief trains him and he eventually becomes the famed “Beggar So”. You have to see Su execute Drunken Boxing yourself to realise the explosiveness in its fluid moves. When the Beggar Sect is attacked, Su spends no time punching his enemies with this newfound Wushu form. 

Wong’s fighting style is all about grace and elegance. On top of his Southern Shaolin skills, he learns the formidable Shadowless Kick from his mentor Master Lok. As the name suggests, it is one kick that will hit you without any warning. Wong also handles weapons quite well, as seen from the way he fights off bandits with a long pole. Wong’s moves are sweeping yet thrilling, and definitely stylishly choreographed for the senses. 

We are rooting for Su again – simply because we love our action rough and bloody. Wong’s style may be fast, but we wish it was a little more furious. We get the feeling that if Su were to give it his all, he may just break a few of Wong’s bones. But hey, being a physician, Wong should have no problems finding the right medicine to heal himself, right?

Lookin’ good, dude!
Before Su lost it all, he was a fine looking young man. Alas, the moment he joined the Beggar Sect, we can smell the stench from his scruffy hair. We know your blood is boiling with rage, but it wouldn’t hurt to take some effort to clean yourself up? Popular Chinese actor Jun Cao takes on the role of Su, and his performance is engaging enough to have you glued to the screen throughout the movie. If he had a colourful wardrobe, he may be a happier man.

On the other hand, Wong is a dashing chap who is pleasing to the eyes. Real life Chinese martial arts coach Hao Ran Sun plays the character. He is perpetually dressed well, and speaks in a very refined tone. This guy would have no problems charming ladies. We also like how well-pressed his robes are. The bright colours help make him look good as well. Who says men who fight can’t be fine-looking gentlemen?

Wong wins hands down in this section with his clean look. We can’t imagine anyone not being impressed by how polite, gracious and well-bred he is. He may even apologise to his opponent if he pins him down in a fight. You don’t come across such respectful and well-mannered people these days.

To sum things up, Su will probably win in a friendly fight against Wong. However, the two men will probably sit down and discuss Kung-Fu and other worldly matters over Chinese tea after the fight. They may even talk about how to combine forces to battle injustice and villains!