Comparison between the cut old US version (old US DVD by Dimension) and the uncut original version (new US DVD by Dragon Dynasty).
- 7 cuts and one scene with alternative footage
- Difference in running time: 190,4 sec (= 3:10 min)
This minor classic from Jet Li's pre-Hollywood era (directed by Yuen Woo-Ping and also starring Michelle Khan) was - as happened with many HK movies - cut, redubbed and equipped with a new score for the US release (repsonsible this time: Dimension Films). At least there is not as much missing as is the case with other movies, besides one violence cut it is mostly the typical HK humor that was removed.
Luckily, in 2008 Dragon Dinasty and Bey Logan released the uncut version on DVD and Blu-Ray in the US, both with good quality (translator's note: many Amazon comments say that the Blu-ray transfer is of inferior quality, which may or may not be true).
It is interesting that the opening credits sequence of the US version, which is not identical to the original one, actually features some shots that even do not appear in the original version at all!
Running time designations are formatted like this:
Old US DVD in NTSC / New US DVD in NTSC
Different company logos at the beginning: Either Dimension (old) or Dragon Dynasty (new).
Old US version 1,2 sec longer
Alternative Footage / Credits
00:32-02:13 / 00:31-02:09
After the Golden Harves logo, which appears in both versions, the credits are different. However, they are both in English, maybe the new version's credits were made exclusively for it. The new version shows additional shots at the beginning because the old cut starts with a black background.
The complete following scene with overlays has been almost completely redone, the old DVD even features some exclusive footage here, e.g. Jet Li in front of the gate.
Jet Li can in general be seen more often/longer at the beginning in the old version, the new version shows more of the monks' exercise instead. Towards the end, the two versions show completely different material.
Old US version 2,4 sec longer
09:22 / 09:19-09:44
A night in the monastery. Most of the monks sleep normally, but Jumbao and Tienbo do this while also making a headstand. When they fall over, their brethrens complain about not being able to sleep.
63:28 / 63:50-64:44
An additional scene with Junbao. Rev. Ling has prepared hot needles which are supposed to heal him. However, as soon as Junbao sees them, he takes them and chases the Ling and Siu Lin. The needles (and the spots they hit) make the former cry and the latter laugh. He rather confusedly watches the reactions.
65:55 / 67:11-68:20
Again Junbau. Siu Lin and Rev. Ling have tied him to the bed. Ling is already really stressed and even spits some blood, now he puts a yellow note on Junbau's body and tells him to finally sleep. When Siu Lin asks whether this would work, he announces that he will hit himself ten times if it did not. The two go outside, but Junbao rises behind them - the bed still tied to him. Ling starts hitting himself, but Siu Lin says she would help him.
66:37 / 69:02-69:03
Violence cut: One of Tienbo's soldiers is being pierced in a close-up.
67:19 / 69:45-70:25
Junbao is sitting at the table but does not want to eat his portion. Siu Lin and Rev. Ling try to demonstrate what he is supposed to do by eating with excited faces. Junbao reacts by giving them shares of his portion.
67:54 / 71:00-71:01
The governor laughs at the end of the shot.
This scene was completey redubbed because of the following partial cut. In the rest of the movie, only the previously missing parts were redubbed.
68:04 / 71:11-71:13
The governor adds that they would meet the emperor on their journey - and laughs again.
The English credits in front of a black background have different fonts and are a bit longer in the old version (no pictures here).