XL Popcorn – Come Drink With Me

List Item:¬†Watch all of the ‚Äú1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die‚ÄĚ
Progress: 640/1007
Title: Come Drink With Me
Director: King Hu
Year: 1966
Country: Hong Kong

A few episodes of¬†The Ancient Magus’ Bride¬†later and I think I’ve cleared my juju of family massacre movies. So I went for the¬†wuxia classic¬†Come Drink With Me¬†with the hope that I will have dreams of flying swords instead of being buried alive. Hope springs eternal.

It’s been an awfully long time since I last watched a martial arts movie period, let alone for the 1001 list. Looking back on my posts it’s likely that¬†A Chinese Ghost Story,¬†which I watched 18 months ago, would be the last one. It isn’t because of a distinct lack of martial arts films, more that it’s never a genre that comes to mind when picking a film to watch. Also – if I’m being honest – I thought¬†Come Drink With Me¬†sounded more like a W.C. Fields comedy from the 1930s (like¬†The Fatal Glass of¬†Beer) rather than an important part of the martial arts cinema canon.

Why is Come Drink With Me important? Well, this brought a big innovation to the genre: a kick-ass female lead. Crazy to think that this would be a new idea considering the strong central female characters in films like Peking Opera Blues and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, but I guess there had to be a watershed moment like this one.

Being over 50 years old it is clear that there have been a lot of developments in the wuxia genre since¬†Come Drink With Me¬†was released. Improved editing techniques, greater scope of stunt-work and sturdier sets. Still, a lot of these issues is where the charm lies and¬†this film has charm to spare. Just a pity that the story felt like it started to trail off at the end, which meant that I started to lose interest… as so often happens with these films.

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