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Movie Critique: Correcting Injustices (1986) directed by Corey Yuen
Movie Critique: Correcting Injustices (1986) directed by Corey Yuen

Movie Critique: Correcting Injustices (1986) directed by Corey Yuen

“What matters is the money, not bravery.”

Corey Yuen and Yuen Biao collaborated on this film, with both serving as co-directors and action directors. Yuen is credited as the director, while Yuen Biao plays the lead role. “Righting Wrongs” is highly regarded as one of their best works and has gained a cult following for various reasons.

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In this manner, some interesting facts about the production should be mentioned. According to Rothrock, Golden Harvest initially cast her as the antagonist opposite Jackie Chan in Armour of God. However, when production was stopped due to Chan’s serious on-set accident, Rothrock was reassigned to Righting Wrongs with Biao. While rehearsing for the film, she hurt her right ACL; instead of taking time off for surgery, she continued filming and used her left leg for kicking scenes. The filming process lasted for five and a half months, during which Biao suffered a back injury while shooting a scene where his character jumps from the second floor of a house onto grass padding.

When the production team required a female martial artist for the movie, Rothrock suggested Karen Sheperd. Upon reaching Hong Kong, Sheperd insisted that her character should not be killed, as it would damage her image. She also objected to killing a boy, as stated in the script. Once Rothrock and Sheperd’s fight sequence was finished, the crew filmed a stand-in performing the scenes that Sheperd declined to do, including the death of her character.

The initial conclusion of the movie was poorly received when it was shown at midnight in Hong Kong. As a result, Rothrock halted production of “China O’Brien” and traveled from Los Angeles to Hong Kong to film a new ending for the Mandarin and global releases. Ultimately, there were three variations of the film and four alternative endings, all featured in the 2022 Blu-Ray release by 88 films.

Jason Ha Ling-ching is a dedicated prosecutor who follows the rules, but must deal with the flaws in the justice system and external pressures when making decisions. After his mentor is killed and the key witness in his current case and their family are murdered, Ha takes matters into his own hands. However, he is pursued by Senior Inspector Cindy Si of the Hong Kong Police Department, who believes he committed another murder. Ha’s innocence relies on Sammy Yu Chi-Man, a witness to the events, and it is discovered that someone known as “Crown” is behind the crimes.

As is typical in 1980s Hong Kong martial arts films, the plot may not always be logical, following the style of low-budget movies. However, in this particular case, discussions about justice, corruption, and vigilantism add a layer of complexity to the story. The way certain good characters are killed, the consequences faced by the police, and the overall brutality portrayed create a strong sense of drama that adds depth to the narrative. Additionally, the misunderstandings between Jason and Cindy, including a memorable fight scene, set this movie apart from the many others in its genre due to its intricacies.

The acting in the film is also noteworthy, with Yuen Biao and Louis Fan delivering strong performances as Sammy, especially in the more serious moments. Roy Chiao exudes a commanding presence as Magistrate Judge, and Melvin Wong plays a convincing villain. However, the comedic aspects of the film are not executed well and could have been omitted for a better overall viewing experience.

The quality of this film is largely determined by its action scenes, which are expertly directed by Yuen and Biao and performed by skilled stuntmen and actors. The standout moments include the fight between the two main characters, Biao’s battle with Peter Cunnigham (the Black Assassin), the final fight, and Cynthia Rothrock’s showdown with Karen Sheperd. These scenes are some of the most memorable in the genre, thanks to the intricate movements, speed, and intensity displayed by all involved. There are also some non-martial arts sequences that add a dramatic element to the action. Overall, the action in this film is outstanding and well-crafted.

“Righting Wrongs” is an excellent martial arts film that both thrives on its action and includes enough drama and context to elevate it much above the standards of the category.