Compared are the cut US DVD by Code Red and the uncut Chinese TV Version
- 14 documented alterations
- Length difference: 570.5 sec (= 9:31 min)
Challenge the Dragon (1973) is a rather cheaply produced nonstop actioner from Taiwan. Back in the day, there were a lot of these but it does not mean that this one is not entertaining even though the plot could not be any more trivial. The level of violence is acceptable as well.
In the US and France, approx. 10 minutes of plot were cut. As a detailed comparison with the US DVD shows, a lot of dialog in the first half of the movie is missing. The conflict between the peasants and Tanaka is easier to comprehend resp. it simply makes more sense. However, the US Version does not lack any violence. Certainly, cut is cut. But still, the US DVD is not the worst option.
Time index refers to
US DVD in NTSC / Chinese TV Version in PAL
00:00 / 00:00-00:07
Right at the very beginning, the US DVD lacks the first few seconds of the first fight.
03:40-03:44 / 03:38-03:48
The US DVD contains an exclusive English title here. The Chinese TV Version contains a further shot including the original title instead.
Chinese TV Version 6.4 sec longer
The subsequent credits differ as well. At least, the US DVD contains English credits here - even though the English is pretty bad.
03:55 / 03:49-04:19
Three more shots of Wai running around - including further credits.
04:11 / 04:34-04:58
Two more redundant shots.
07:12 / 07:52-09:20
The dying father much earlier via close-up. Also, he says a few words. Yu Ching says the doctor would be there soon while his father simply states gangsters had to fight each other with all they got. He adds he had similar experiences with a similar organisation. He then gasps and Chiao appears. He promises his father to avenge his death.
87.8 sec (= 1:28 min)
07:39 / 09:45-11:03
The meeting is much longer. Tanaka can keep his money and Mr. Ma also explains he was not going to sell his land. Mr. Cheng tries to talk him into it and Tanaka lists the advantages for the peasants. They then say goodbye so they have time to think about it and meet again the following day.
77.9 sec (= 1:18 min)
12:06 / 15:19-16:34
After Chiao, who is outside, tosses something in the bushes, something breaks inside. Mr. Wa is speaking with Mr. Cheng about his deceased brother and the latter swears Tanaka has nothing to do with it. Once again, he presents Tanaka's business transactions profitable for Mr. Ma but he remains sceptical. Last but lot least, Cheng hits thr road and Ma says he would discuss it with his family.
74.6 sec (= 1:15 min)
15:29 / 19:49
A few redundant frames have gotten lost at the end/beginning of a shot.
18:13 / 22:26-23:17
In an additional scene, the baddies threaten Yu Ching resp. he is supposed to obey and join them. Yu Ching says Tanaka was responsable for his father's death and he wanted to steal their land. Threads are being made, then he is taken away. Someone resports Chiao was on his way to Tanaka.
20:16 / 25:16-26:08
After Chiao and Wai get back, they report to their mother first. She says to Yu Ching facing the gang all by himself had been unreasonable because they had to come up with a plan first. The mother also tells them not to inform Mr. Wa because has obviously in bed with them. Chiao points out that they were going to talk to the peasants first. Their mother agrees sends Wai to gather the peasants.
23:40 / 29:23-30:48
I love the smell of additional footage in the morning: The peasants stand in line for their loan but they are being ripped off resp. they get less than their commodities are worth. Moreover, they only get vouchers instead of cash. With aa few throats and the hope that will get what they deserve two days later, the peasants are being put off.
Miss Miu then says goodbye to Chiao & Wai talks about what happened with the peasants because he has witnessed the entire thing. Miss Miu realizes she can't expect the peasants to support her, not under these circumstances.
84.4 sec (= 1:24 min)
27:08 / 34:08-35:38
The servant's way to Tanaka is longer. He then whispers something. Tanaka sends Mr. Cheng to Miss Miu (resp. Ma's daughter) because she allegedly causes trouble. Mr. Ma intends to leave as well but Tanaka does not let him.
Mr. Cheng's conversation with Miss Miu also starts earlier. She makes it abundantly clear that she believes Tanaka was a weasel and that she could not be intimidated by Mr. Cheng. Fang appears and gives his letter of recommendation to Mr. Cheng. With Cheng reading the letter, the versions are back in sync.
90 sec (= 1:30 min)
31:49 / 40:07-40:08
A few missing frames before Chiao shows up.
53:15 / 60:42-60:43
Jump cut at the end of the final shot of the fight.
74:36 / 81:12-81:13
Miss Miu and Yu Ching a little earlier.
84:46-84:54 / 90:58-91:06
In the US Version, "The End" appears in French ("Fin"). In the Chinese TV Version, the previous shot of everyone walking away is a little longer instead.
Last but not least, a little screenshot comparison. The contrast is higher on the US DVD and the master looks a little worn and torn. At least, it is homogenous. The Chinese TV Version on the other hand some yellowness and the picture has obviously been filtered as well. Unedited, the Chinese master would most likely be the highly superior one resp. there would be way more visible details.