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The Blood of Fu Manchu (1968) HD online

The Blood of Fu Manchu (1968) HD online
Language: English
Category: Movie / Adventure / Crime
Original Title: The Blood of Fu Manchu
Director: Jesús Franco
Writers: Jesús Franco,Sax Rohmer
Released: 1968
Duration: 1h 32min
Video type: Movie
Fu Manchu is hidden with his evil daughter Lin Tang in a lost city he has found in the jungles of South America. He discovers a poison deadly for men through kiss and he abducts ten women to infect them with the poison to destroy his enemies. Then he sends one woman to London to kiss his greatest enemy, the Scotland Yard agent Nayland Smith. Nayland is blinded by the poison and his friend Dr. Petrie travels with him to the jungles in South America to seek out Fu Manchu expecting to find an antidote. They team up with agent Carl Jansen and soon they learn the scheme of Fu Manchu for world domination.
Complete credited cast:
Christopher Lee Christopher Lee - Fu Manchu
Richard Greene Richard Greene - Nayland Smith
Howard Marion-Crawford Howard Marion-Crawford - Dr. Petrie (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Götz George Götz George - Carl Jansen
Maria Rohm Maria Rohm - Ursula Wagner
Ricardo Palacios Ricardo Palacios - Sancho Lopez
Loni von Friedl Loni von Friedl - Celeste
Frances Khan Frances Khan - Carmen
Tsai Chin Tsai Chin - Lin Tang
Isaura de Oliveira Isaura de Oliveira - Yuma
Shirley Eaton Shirley Eaton - Black Widow
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
David de Keyser David de Keyser - of The Governor andothers (voice)
Robert Rietty Robert Rietty - of Jansen and Lopez and others (voice)

Shirley Eaton only has two lines.

Richard Greene replaced Douglas Wilmer.

Sir Christopher Lee (Dr. Fu Manchu), Tsai Chin (Lin Tang), and Howard Marion-Crawford (Dr. Petrie) are the only actors and actress to appear in all five "Fu Manchu" movies.

Maria Rohm was married to Producer Harry Alan Towers at the time.

If Shirley Eaton's brief cameo seems out of place, that's because it is. It was lifted from another Jesús Franco/Harry Alan Towers collaboration, Die sieben Männer der Sumuru (1969), and was inserted into this movie without Eaton's permission.

Filmed back-to-back with the next chapter in the franchise, The Castle of Fu Manchu (1969).

Fourth in the Fu Manchu film franchise.

Known by several other titles including "Fu Manchu and the Kiss of Death", "Kiss and Kill", and "Against All Odds".



Reviews: [25]

  • avatar

    Zamo

    Christopher Lee returns in this fourth chapter as the evil Fu Manchu , this time has designed a fantastic gadget injecting gorgeous girls (Leni Von Friedl, among others) a venomous poison which reacts in a killing kiss . The beautiful girls are sent to seduce Nayland Smith (Richard Greene replaced Douglas Wilmer) and world leaders . When Nayland Smith is kissed by a death-kiss and he then strolls completely blinded , letting his assistant Dr. Petrie (Howard Marion Crawford) takes the center of attention . A blind Nayland Smith enlists the help an adventurer named Jansen (Gotz George) and an attractive woman (Maria Rhom, married to producer Harry Allan Towers) .

    This is a bizarre blending of adventures , thriller and Spaghetti Western . This exciting picture is full of Chinese killers , British adventurers , and Cangaiceiros dressed in Mexican bandits-alike . Weak performance by Richard Greene as Nyland Smith who in previous episodes was best interpreted by Nigel Green and Douglas Wilmer . The villain T Sai Chin stands out as Fu Manchu's daughter and the murderous bandit Ricardo Palacios overacting as a sympathetic chief Cangaicero . This is the beginning of collaborating between Jesus Franco or ¨Uncle Jess¨ and the producer Harry Allan Towers and to be continued in several movies . Filmed in Madrid and Rio De Janeiro and well photographed by Manuel Merino . Atmospheric musical score by Daniel White , Jess Frank's usual.

    Most critics felt this outing was one of the weakest entries along with ¨The castle of Fu Manchu¨ also directed by Jess Frank with similar casting , plenty of stock-shots and a Z-series style . Christopher Lee (Dr. Fu Manchu), Tsai Chin (Lin Tang) and Howard Marion-Crawford (Dr. Petrie) are the only actors to appear in all five Harry Allan Towers/Fu Manchu films . The best installments resulted to be ¨Face of Fu Manchu (1965, Don Sharp)¨ , and ¨Brides of Fu Manchu (1966, Don Sharp)¨ and the inferior ¨Vengeance of Fu Manchu (1967 , Jeremy Summers) ¨.
  • avatar

    Dianazius

    THE BLOOD OF FU MANCHU is far from a great, or even good movie. But it's fast-paced and trashy enough to hold my attention, and features enthusiastic performances from Christopher Lee and Richard Greene.

    The plot is as lurid as pulp trash gets. Fu Manchu and his daughter inflict a deadly snake bite on a group of women. Through his latest diabolical invention, Fu Manchu has figured out a way to prevent the venom from harming the women, but it will slowly kill any man whom she kisses (thus the original US title, KISS AND KILL).

    One of those men is Fu Manchu's nemesis, Nayland Smith, who manages to survive his snake bite-kiss long enough to track Fu Manchu down and confront him. What happens next? You'll have to watch it and see! Suffice it to say that Fu Manchu does get to say his famous last line, "The world will hear from me again!" It's all pretty juvenile and silly, but infamous schlock master Jess Franco injects enough nastiness and T&A to keep things interesting. I don't see the racism which many critics seem to feel plagues the series reflected in this movie. It's just a bit of harmless off-the-wall fun, and one of director Franco's better movies.

    Unfortunately, it was followed by THE CASTLE OF FU MANCHU.
  • avatar

    Kefym

    Fu Manchu (Christopher Lee) is hidden with his evil daughter Lin Tang (Tsai Chin) in a lost city he has found in the jungles of South America. He discovers a poison deadly for men through kiss and he abducts ten women to infect them with the poison to destroy his enemies. Then he sends one woman to London to kiss his greatest enemy, the Scotland Yard agent Nayland Smith (Richard Greene). Nayland is blinded by the poison and his friend Dr. Petrie (Howard Marion Crawford) travels with him to the jungles in South America to seek out Fu Manchu expecting to find an antidote. They team up with agent Carl Jansen (Götz George) and soon they learn the scheme of Fu Manchu for world domination.

    "The Blood of Fu Manchu" is a silly and lame adventure of the infamous Fu Manchu by Jess Franco. The acting is dreadful and the plot is confused and boring with no emotion. The speeches of Howard Marion Crawford and Götz George are very difficult to be understood and most of the women are beautiful actresses. My vote is four.

    Title (Brazil): Not Available on DVD and Blu-Ray
  • avatar

    Ueledavi

    The last time I saw this was almost 7 years ago, and all I could remember was that Nayland Smith goes blind and that it was very boring. Having been initiating myself into the Franco cult though, I actually enjoyed this quite a bit on my second viewing. It's impossible to accept Christopher Lee as an Asian man, but he still makes for an imposing villain. I also liked the supporting character of Carl Jansen, even though he makes some pretty boneheaded decisions. Unfortunately the character of Sancho Lopez really hinders my enjoyment of certain scenes. I think he was supposed to be a likable jerk in the Tuco tradition, but Ricardo Palacios lacks the charisma to remain sympathetic even while doing bad things. Franco milks the budget for all it's worth, and there are only a few telltale signs of how meager his means were (such as a little cave being shot from many angles to suggest a huge fortress). I was also surprised at how well he did with the action scenes.

    My favorite thing about Blood of Fu Manchu were some of the oddball touches throughout. There's a Mayor who detains Carl Jansen for three days simply because "good chess players are hard to come by", and the delightfully whiny Dr. Petrie. To give you an idea of what a sod this guy is, he actually whines about not being able to reach his thermos full of tea when stuck in Fu Manchu's dungeon. And at one point he complains about the South American climate, berating himself for having gone there in the first place. This despite the fact that his reason for coming along is the impending death of his friend Nayland Smith! This film may have a lot of haters, but I really enjoyed it.

    (I also noticed a major connection with another Franco film. Both this and The Demons feature women dealing out kisses of death, though The Demons deals with it in a darker manner. I wonder if this pops up in any other Franco films. In this case it could just be an incidental connection, since this film was written by Harry Alan Towers.)
  • avatar

    Yndanol

    This solid, sumptuous adaptation the Fu Manchu series (the director's first of two) is further evidence of both Christopher Lee's tremendous character acting and that Spanish director Jess Franco actually did make some good movies. This movie is not "perfect" by any means, but Franco milks the meager budget for every dime and delivers maximum scale for this bizarre pulp epic. He delivers on all the sex, violence, and the macabre you would expect from a Franco flick and also manages to create a sense of dignity and responsibility about the whole thing (with much help from Lee's focused performance). Anyway, good stuff. Especially if you are in to adventure serials and/ or jungle exploitation films. Don't miss out on a newly discovered classic. Blue-Underground's DVD of the uncut, beautifully rendered remastering should revert many of the film's most passionate critics into true believers.
  • avatar

    Sudert

    The fourth of the British made Fu Manchu films starring Christopher Lee(STAR WARS MENACE), this shows the series desperately flagging and in dire need of a heart transplant. The other three films weren't exactly stunning but at least two of them were watchable enough. The problem here is that there seems to be lots of little plots without any overall cohesion. Jesus Franco's films are plagued with too many ancillary characters who don't mean anything to the film. Did we really need the entire plot with the bandits? The film could have survived quite easily without it. A new director and a change of direction for the series in this case meant ditching the characters and settings that made the other films as successful as they were. Richard Greene (Submarine Patrol) as Nayland Smith is hardly given any screen time at all and Tsai Chin's Lin Tang (Fu Manchu's daughter) is grossly over-looked here - she proves to be just as cruel and brutal as her father, if not more, in the previous films and there was so much more scope for her during those torture scenes. Instead of new characters that mean nothing, how about fleshing out the characters that we actually did like in the first place? At least Professor Petrie is given a bit more time here than he was before and the film is all the better for it. Christopher Lee does look rather uncomfortable in his make-up but is arguably the best thing about the film. The Bond-style of the previous flicks is still evident though, with Jesus Franco seemingly placing Fu Manchu in a hideout in the rainforest simply to get some shots of the jungle. There's the never-ending army of henchmen that Fu Manchu employs and various nasty devices in his base designed to maim and inflict pain. The scenes in which the kidnapped women are tied from the cave roof in their cells with as little clothing on as possible seems overtly tasteless, especially as it's not really fitting with the overall tone of this series.

    The Blood of Fu Manchu is a bit of a mess really and bounces from plot to plot without any clear direction. It's a shame because the series' had much potential but it was squandered and left to fall into the hands of hack directors like Franco...
  • avatar

    Cargahibe

    The fourth film in the revived Fu Manchu series from hit-and-run international film producer Harry Alan Towers is the first one directed by Jesus (Jess) Franco, a cult icon best known for the staggering quantity of his films, as well as their usually appalling quality. In hindsight, Towers and Franco were destined for each other. Both were specialists in speedy international productions and each usually juggled more than one project at a time.

    "Fu Manchu's Kiss of Death" (the shooting title) was filmed back-to-back (or perhaps simultaneously) with the next film in the series "The Castle of Fu Manchu" and shows evidence of having been written on the fly. The script is loosely constructed and constantly sidetracks itself with multiple subplots and far too many characters. The most intrusive involves the a South American bandit chief, whose protracted exploits take up so much screen time that viewers just walking in would think they were in the wrong theater. Probably designed to show off the Brazilian exteriors, it is tempting to say that these sequences look like rejected scenes from "The Wild Bunch", but that would be giving Franco's footage too much credit.

    As evidence that Towers was not above ripping off himself, the film opens with a sequence that is a remake of the opening of "Brides of Fu Manchu", with women chained to pillars in an underground hideaway. As in "Brides", one is led to a snake pit but, instead of being lowered in, she is gingerly bitten in the throat by one, thereby becoming the carrier of the title's kiss of death. The contrast between the lighting, staging and sets in these two sequences gives ample testimony of how low the series had fallen in just two years.

    The ever-present Maria Rohm (AKA Mrs. Harry Alan Towers) shows up as a jungle missionary wearing a gaucho hat and red leotards. She gets involved in yet another subplot about a proto-Indiana Jones leading a medical expedition. Apparently, this plotline exists only to provide the hero, afflicted with the death kiss, with a miraculous cure at the last minute.

    While the rest of the cast was having fun in the Brazilian jungles, stars Christopher Lee and Richard Greene never leave the studio in Madrid, Spain that was home to all the film's interiors. Guest star Shirley Eaton appears in one brief scene that appears to be an outtake from one of the two Su-Muru films she was making for Towers at the time. (The second was also directed by Franco.)

    It's hard to believe that this film (retitled "Kiss and Kill") got major USA playdates in 1968 as a solo feature.
  • avatar

    Knights from Bernin

    The 4th of the 5 Fu Manchu movies with Christopher Lee takes the villain to a new hiding-place in Brazil. He uses a snake venom to blind and kill his enemies. Immune girls are passing on the poison to the victims by a kiss of death. Carl Jansen (Götz George) finds Fu Manchu, and Nayland Smith urgently needs help because he's been kissed already. The whole movie makes no sense at all (even the trip to Brazil isn't necessary for Nayland Smith, since the antidote was available in England from the girl who gave the kiss), but I didn't worry much about logic because it is so much fun! Just a handful of examples: Dr Petrie is unshaken by any danger, but cold tea really upsets him... A bandit steals a book, then throws it away: "No pictures, only words! Terrible!" he says with the justified wrath of the illiterate. The governor keeps Jansen prisoner for three days under false accusation - and apologizes that "good chess players are hard to find"!

    Ricardo Palacios as Lopez makes a much better co-villain than Horst Frank in the previous movie because he provides such a great difference: the short, fat, sweating, ugly bandit compared to the tall, lean, stiff, ascetic mastermind. Lopez is the first one with the guts to ask: „How much do you pay?", and Lee dryly replies: „Freedom is not measured in terms of money..." Brilliant moments, and the camera work with its close-ups and focusing is looking much more creative than the traditional job in „The Vengeance of Fu Manchu". Last not least, more sexy girls than ever before! I voted 7/8/5/7/4 for the five movies.
  • avatar

    Rainbearer

    In spite of the fact that this is the 4th (I think) entry in Christopher Lee's Fu Manchu "series" (I'm assuming they don't all follow on from each other), it's the first one I've seen and if the rest of them are anything like this; I hope it's the last! I can't profess to know a great deal about this series having only seen one film in it; though I am familiar with the character Fu Manchu after having seen the 1932 Boris Karloff film. Christopher Lee is a great actor, but here he looks like he couldn't really be bothered; for a start, Fu Manchu is meant to be an oriental character, and Lee doesn't even try to put on an oriental accent! The plot follows Fu Manchu's quest for world domination and focuses on his bright idea of filling up a load of women with poison and using them to seduce ten of the most powerful men in the world. It actually doesn't sound like that bad a springboard for a decent film, adding in the jungle setting and a super villain, you'd really be forgiven for thinking that this film is going to be a lot better. Jess Franco takes the directors chair and it seems, as is often the case, he cared more about his paycheck than the film as it lacks suspense and excitement, the characters are mostly dull and the situation is not made the best of. Overall, this film may do something for fans of the series; but personally it hasn't made me want to see more of these films!
  • avatar

    Nayatol

    Blood of FuManchu, The (1968)

    1/2 (out of 4)

    This here is technically the fourth film in the Christopher Lee/FuManchu series, although most fans just consider the first three to be a series and the final two just the work of Spanish director Jess Franco. No matter how you consider the series to work, there's very little doubt as to how bad this film actually is. FuManchu (Lee) and his daughter Lin Tang (Tsai Chin) are hiding out in the Amazon jungle. FuManchu comes up with a new idea to take over the world and it's to send out ten beautiful women with poison on their lips to kill various world leaders. THE BLOOD OF FUMANCHU was released under countless titles including KISS AND KILL but no matter what you call it there's no doubt it's a horrible little picture that doesn't have a single thing going for it. Jess Franco has made a lot of bad films in his career but there's no question this here is the worst of the decade, which for the most part had some decent films that even non-fans thought were at least good. The biggest problem is that the entire story is a complete mess as you never really know if this film is trying to be serious or some sort of spoof. Lee pretty much sleepwalks through his role and it really doesn't appear that he's having any fun. Tsai Chin is about the only decent thing in the film but she isn't given too much to do and the rest of the supporting cast appear to have some sort of poison in their system as well. The film has a comic book vibe to it but there's not an ounce of energy to be found anywhere and what fun adventure there should be isn't anywhere to be found either. This production might have had a bigger than normal budget but nothing was done with it and in the end this is just a worthless film without anything going for it.
  • avatar

    Doukree

    The Blood of Fu Manchu has very little going for it other than the fact that Sadean director Jess Franco seems to want to make the evil Chinese mastermind and his deliriously malevolent daughter, Lin Tang, the heroes of the film. Having been reduced to cameo status in the turgid previous entry in the series, The Vengeance of Fu Manchu, star Christopher Lee is now given plenty of screen time, numerous loving close-ups, and plenty of over-ripe dialog. He responds with a wonderfully spirited performance that is a joy to behold. Conversely, ostensible hero, Nayland Smith, played by a wooden Richard Green, is reduced to blind impotence, and sidekick Dr. Petrie comes across as a sputtering buffoon. The usually exciting climax is here rushed and perfunctory, as if Franco could not bear to kill off his villains. Franco never comes to grips with producer Harry Alan Towers' dreadfully wordy and convoluted screenplay, and the film bogs down for long periods of time in pointless sub plots and banal 'action' sequences. Fortunately, in the next and last film in the series, The Castle of Fu Manchu, a more confident Franco throws all caution to the wind and focuses almost entirely on Fu and Lin Tang, ironically, in the process, killing off the series forever.
  • avatar

    Hudora

    This film was viewed at 1.30 in the morning, and after viewing it was easy to see why it had been screened at that time. The star, Christopher Lee, was cast as an oriental super-villain with a crooked moustache. Lee made no effort to fake an oriental accent, probably due to the fact that he did not want a part in the sequel. The action scenes were the worst I have ever seen in a movie, although budding doctors may wish to watch this as a guide of how not to do a blood transfusion! The films saving grace was its use of un-nececery nudity, which earns it 3/10.
  • avatar

    Wrathshaper

    Christopher Lee made several Fu Manchu films in the 1960s and I've seen them in no particular order. In my review after having seen THE BLOOD OF FU MANCHU, I wrote that I'd seen the absolute worst FU MANCHU film ever made. Well, perhaps I spoke too soon, as this terrible movie is every bit as craptastic. Both films manage to take a somewhat interesting character (FU Manchu) and make him about as interesting as an avocado (a mushy one at that). Christopher Lee has all the charisma and charm of a block of wood, as he says and does practically nothing! Despite being an excellent horror actor, here dressed as a Chinese man (a very tall and Caucasian looking one), he appears as if no one has written him any dialog and he occupies very little screen time. When he does appear, he just stands there expressionless--like a somewhat Chinese version of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD.

    Now if this were all, perhaps the film would still be worth watching. Don't assume this, please, as the rest of the film is even worse. Rarely have I seen a plot so hopelessly convoluted, contradictory and nonsensical. Here are some of the many problems:

    --Although the film is supposed to be set in Brazil, it switches between there and "nearby" Southern Mexico. Did anyone involved with the film look at a map? The two locations, however, are probably at least 3000 miles apart--yet they can walk to or take a horse to the other place in what seems like a few hours tops!

    --Fu Manchu has put poison in 10 ladies' system so when they kiss a man, he dies almost instantly. You see this happen at the beginning and end of the film. However, when Nayland Smith is kissed full on the lips by one of these hypnotized killers, he goes blind only (because he's the hero in these god-awful flicks). And, this is later cured in a way that is sure to make you laugh.

    --When one guy dies from poison and falls down a waterfall, when he's bobbing around in the water, you can see him blinking his eyes.

    --When the ladies go on assignments to kill, they travel around the globe and are accompanied by Manchu's henchmen--making it a pretty complicated affair. Why not just have the henchmen shoot the intended victims in the face?! It's much easier and more cost-effective. Even a cinder block dropped on their heads or electric lamp tossed into their tub would be easier and make more sense.

    --How do they make a comic book-like film and yet have almost no energy expended whatsoever? The fights are in slow-motion, there is no suspense and it all just limps along--making it a very boring movie.

    --Why do Manchu's henchmen NEVER make a sound when they are attacked by surprise? In one scene, the German dude does this again and again to pick off the baddies and not once do the dummkopfs call out for help!!

    --How does a small tussle at the end of the film result in Manchu's complex exploding? It just looks like they ran out of film and decided to stage a very, very small pyrotechnic explosion and say "hurray, we won!" and end it.

    --How does Manchu get so many willing henchmen? He never treats them well, disposes of them right and left and brings them halfway around the globe to the South American jungle...and WHY the South American jungle?!

    --Why were there so many naked women in this film? Again and again, there seemed to be little reason to rip off ladies' blouses other than to give the audience a cheap thrill. And, if you are going to make a nudie film, why not get attractive women?!

    The confusing aspects of the film abound--with many, many more examples. Frankly, this film appears to have been written by lemurs. I can't decide which of the two final Christopher Lee films about Fu Manchu is worse and frankly, you'd have to pay me a lot to see them again so that I could definitively decide.

    These films suck and aren't even fun to watch. If the film makers didn't care enough to work out the plot or produce a watchable film, why should people both as well?
  • avatar

    Mustard Forgotten

    The evil Fu Manchu continues his endless quest for world domination but first; he has developed a plan to eliminate his arch-enemies (of which Scotland Yard's Nayland Smith is top priority). So our oriental master-criminal has kidnapped 10 of the most beautiful women on the planet and stuffed their bodies with the world's deadliest poison. Their orders are to seduce the enemies and kill them with "the kiss of death". His fiendish plan almost succeeds but Smith survives the assault and goes after Fu Manchu, who shelters in the jungles of South America. The premise of this sequel sounds promising enough but, don't be fooled, it's a terribly boring and unexciting film. There are so many things wrong with this production I don't even properly know where to start. For starters, the screenplay introduces way too many characters and actually none of them are worth mentioning. There's no tension and there's a total lack of gore and sleaze, as well (considering Jess Franco signed for the direction, I was at least hoping for this). There are a lot of battle sequences but they're painfully tame and tedious. Franco makes no use of the great jungle-location at all and the editing is lousy. Judging by his emotionless performance, Christopher Lee wasn't interesting in repeating the Fu Manchu role for the fourth time at all. Jess Franco also directs on automatic pilot, meaning without the slightest bit of passion or motivation. For him this was just another easy-money job in between some euro-trash cinema highlights like "99 Women" and "Marquis de Sade: Justine". The absolute best Fu Manchu film remains the 1932 "Mask of Fu Manchu" (starring Boris Karloff), although Don Sharp's efforts "the Face of…." and "The Brides of …" are pretty good as well. There's absolutely nothing to recommend about this one, so avoid unless you're a perfectionist...or really REALLY bored.
  • avatar

    Gholbirius

    With the simple application of a droopy moustache and a touch of eyeliner, Christopher Lee is once again brilliantly transformed (can you detect a hint of sarcasm?) into tyrannical Asian despot Fu Manchu, who is still trying to conquer the world; this time, he is killing off his enemies using female assassins whose kisses have been made deadly through snake venom.

    I love me a bit of Fu Manchu: the character seriously disturbed me as a youngster, his cruelty sending shivers up my spine (I think it might have been the Karloff incarnation that had this effect). Unfortunately, in the hands of the frequently crap Jess Franco, chills are in short supply with this entry in the series, which doesn't even deliver much in the way of unintentional laughs either, making it a pretty dull affair all round.

    For a Franco film, the production values are actually pretty good, with reasonable location work and fancy sets, and the director throws in a little sleaze, with chained women subjected to torture and occasionally stripped to the waist for a snake bite to the breast. But with a dreary pace and some truly pointless scenes, the worst being those featuring an overweight bandit called Sancho Lopez (Ricardo Palacios), this is a real snoozefest.

    It's a sorry sight watching a great actor such as Lee slumming it in such drivel, but at least he's not the only recognisable name making a fool of himself: TV's Robin Hood Richard Greene is also on hand as Fu's arch enemy Nayland Smith, and Bond babe Shirley Eaton appears as Black Widow.
  • avatar

    Moronydit

    … in which prolific Spanish Director Jess Franco gets his hands on what had become something of a franchise, with three previously released films meeting with some success. Also known as 'Fu Manchu and the Kiss of Death', 'Kiss of Death', 'Kiss and Kill' and 'Against All Odds', this is either the fourth in the Fu Manchu series, or 'just another Franco film', depending on your point of view.

    Franco is an odd choice of director for this – his style thus far (and increasingly throughout the 1970s) was far from that of a straightforward horror/adventure auteur. Personally, Fu Manchu's appeal has mostly escaped me, although I found the perverse relationship between Fu and his daughter Fah Lo See (Myrna Loy) very interesting in 1932's Boris Karloff-headed 'Mask of Fu Manchu'. Other than that, he's always seemed a pretty one dimensional villain pursued by a dull British nemesis.

    As that nemesis, Richard Greene here plays Nayland Smith with applicable stoic decency and blandness, until he quickly succumbs to Fu's latest machinations: a pretty young woman has been sent to him infused with poison from a venomous snake. Once kissed, Smith – along with 'nine other of Fu's greatest enemies' – goes blind, and subsequently, it is hoped, will die. Due to Fu's 'genius', the women are not infected by the poison and are simply carriers.

    While Christopher Lee is imperious and crisply spoken as Fu Manchu, Tsai Chin as daughter Lin Tang is rather more interesting. Her perverse delight in torture – something you would expect Franco to exploit – is too briefly featured, as is she, which is a shame. Instead we get many long scenes full of characters who have nothing to do with the ongoing plot - bandits, jungle attacks etc. Interest begins to wane.

    Actress (and 60s sex symbol) Shirley Eaton pops up for two minutes as 'The Black Widow'. The scene was spliced in from another film. Shirley not only claims she was not paid for this, but didn't even know of her inclusion for years.

    Christopher Lee and Tsai Chin are effective in under-used roles, indeed they are the highlights here (although Howard Marion-Crawford is good fun as Dr. Petrie). The story is uneven, the pacing very laboured and thrills few and far between. I love many films from Jess Franco, but his style is wholly wrong for this kind of adventure, I think. 94 minutes has rarely seemed so long.
  • avatar

    FailCrew

    The two-dozen or so existing reviews for this movie neglect to specifically address its most likely audience; the committed Jess Franco fan.

    (Yes, I suppose there may be some fans of the late, great Christopher Lee so dedicated as to want to watch it too, for whom this review will hopefully suffice.)

    So what does a Jess Franco fan look for in a movie? Simple. Gore, sex and nudity, terrible acting, threadbare plot, ludicrous dialogue, and generally inept film-making in every department (pretty much in that order).

    Okay, so the acting is embarrassingly bad. I believe it's testament to what a good bloke Christopher Lee was that he continued making (awful) films with Franco because they were friends, but even he is woeful here. This is obviously not helped by the poor attempt on the part of the make-up department to make him look Chinese. If you've ever seen the early seasons of the original Hawaii Five-O, you'll know what I mean.

    The plot, beyond being simply terrible, is utterly confusing. There's some scheme by the titular miscreant to use women as a means of killing his enemies (whose status as such is never actually established), by having them bitten by a snake whose poison bizarrely doesn't affect them but will kill anyone they kiss. Of course. But it doesn't stop there. There's some baffling sub-plot involving some pre-Indiana Jones archaeologist / adventurer / good guy which I honestly cannot explain.

    The dialogue, while not exactly Shakespeare, is not nearly as wince- inducing as it needs to be in order to actually be amusing, unlike many Franco films ("She sucked the semen and the life right out of him" from Erotikill being one of my all-time favourite bits of dialogue), and the film-making here is far less offensively poor than most (later) Jess Franco efforts. Sadly, this actually serves as a disappointment to those of us who came to the show hoping for wobbly, out-of-focus shots of pubic triangles and bad dubbing. That's always been part of the fun.

    The real con here, though, is the near total absence of any titillation. The snake poison / kiss of death plot would've been a perfect excuse for Franco to stuff the film with boobs and crass sexy bits, but there's only one instance I caught of partial nudity (though by the end I was barely watching) and a wholly unsatisfying one at that. Similarly there is literally noting in the way of badly executed gore.

    The Jess Franco of a mere five years later would have made a totally different film - a film his fans would have wanted to see. Given how bafflingly stupid the, err, story is here, nobody would have questioned the random, curtly inserted sex of later Franco movies, and he'd have replaced the multiple PG deaths in this movie with some needlessly excessive and gory ones.

    Unless you're an obsessive completest and/or a die hard fan of Franco or Lee, give a miss.

    Scratch that - I AM an obsessive completest AND a die hard fan of Franco, and I still can't find anything to recommend in this mess.

    Skip it.
  • avatar

    Bele

    All in all it feels like Hammer Horror meets Spaghetti Western meets Spanish Ed Wood.

    The Fu Manchu films were always weak films and compared badly to many of the Hammer films of the period but this film represents a continued decline in quality from the previous trilogy and feels rather tired.

    The plot is that Fu Manchu has discovered a deadly poison in the jungles of Central America which kills only men. The plot slightly derivative of the earlier 'Brides of Fu Manchu'in that Fu Manchu has kidnapped and chained scantily clad women for nefarious purposes, in this case to be used as carriers for the deadly poison to the far ends of the globe by kissing men to death! The Director Jesus Franco had a track record for making films with sadomasochistic themes so these elements are perhaps unsurprising.

    Christopher Lee looks rather bored in this film and seems to be just reading out his lines.
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    WUNDERKIND

    By now on a steady downward spiral, this fourth instalment of the FU MANCHU series lacks the spirit that made its predecessors entertaining. A further diminishing budget and some lazy execution from Spanish director Jess Franco make this film very hard to sit through, let alone enjoy. The problem is that the cameras are all static throughout the film, and the plot is basically a remake of the previous films in the series, thus losing points for originality. Yet again Fu Manchu develops a deadly virus to destroy the world and yet again Nayland Smith and his friends must stop him.

    The plot in this film side-tracks so much that for much of the film, Fu Manchu and Nayland Smith aren't actually involved. Instead there is some jungle intrigue involving a sweaty Indiana Jones-wannabe and a huge greasy bandit who causes trouble for the local peasants. Suffice to say that the acting in these parts is alternatively stilted and over the top. As a plus, at least the sweaty realism of the jungle is exploited in the full here.

    Christopher Lee returns as Fu Manchu, but is given very, very little to do here, apart from providing the odd bit of menace in a scene or two. Tsai Chin does her thing as the cruel daughter, while Richard Greene (TALES FROM THE CRYPT) takes over the role of Nayland Smith from previous contenders Nigel Green and Douglas Wilmer. Greene looks a bit out of place here and hardly registers, but he does get to do the fun stereotypical "stuffy Briton" bit. The studio sets look cheap and tacky and the lighting is poor, which has the bonus of making the jungle scenes look better.

    The violence level is about the same in the other films, with a few bloody throats and faces, all very cheap-looking. Manchu's red-scarved servants have a pretty poor success ratio here; for every one who commits a violent act, another four are killed off by the good guys. As it's a Jess Franco film there's the added sleaze quotient, with chained naked women and various Asian women getting their tops torn off. This isn't exactly a classic film, but it passes the time if you're stuck for something to watch and at least it has that sleazy Franco atmosphere to it, even if there isn't much going on.
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    Exellent

    The Blood Of Fu Manchu is definitely one of the lamer of the Fu Manchu films that Christopher Lee did in the 60s and 70s of the last century. The master Chinese criminal with limitless ambitions is headquartered deep in the South American jungle developing a really lethal poison that effects only the male part of the human race.

    Richard Greene plays Nayland Smith Fu Manchu's Dr. Van Helsing in the first of two films. But he's only in this very briefly as the heavy lifting for the heroics is done by German actor Gotz George.

    Lee has developed a nasty poison that causes instant blindness and slow death if delivered by a kiss on the lips by one of his inoculated female assassins. Richard Greene gets such a kiss and he and sidekick Dr. Petrie played by Howard Marion Crawford go on an expedition to save the world and save Greene not necessarily in that order.

    As Lee's assassins are beautiful to the extreme, resisting a kiss from them is no easy matter.

    The whole film is done tongue in cheek, but a lot of the gags really miss the mark and the whole thing turns muddy and murky before the film comes to an end. Not to mention the stereotyping of Orientals in a series of stories that reaffirm that Yellow Peril propaganda.
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    Winawel

    International mastermind villain Fu Manchu and his sadistic daughter Lin Tang are hiding out in their secret underground lair in the deep jungles of South America planning next quest for world domination. This involves kidnapping 10 beautiful young women and infecting them with an ancient poison that one kiss from their lips will bring instant death. They are sent around the world to eliminate Fu Manchu's enemies and then eventually he would unleash this plague on the world.

    After the disappointment of "Vengeance of Fu Manchu", what was to follow was truly scrapping the bottom of the barrel. Now in the hands of the infamously prolific director Jess Franco. The next two Fu Manchu entries would be the death of the series, which was started up by producer / writer Harry Alan Towers. Most people would label the 1969 "The Castle of Fu Manchu" as the worst, but for me it was easily "Blood". Both were sloppy, ramshackle and messily plotted, but "Blood" was downright flat and terribly dull for it. The uneventful side distractions (South American bandits) and overall padding just stalled the pacing and even magnifying the daftness of it all. The action was laboured and there was a real lack of adventure to this serial. Plenty of groping though, but not much else. For most part it's uninspired in its direction. We would see Christopher Lee and Tsai Chin reprising their roles with malevolent glee. Lee going about things in the usual diabolical manner and Chin as glassy as ever. Outside of these two performances, there's not much to it. Surprisingly the exotic jungle backdrop is made to good use by Franco. It looks low-rent, but while some of the previous films had that cheap quality they were better handled than this project. Its limitations really do show it up. Franco tries to bring his trademark (no, not the zoom. But there's plenty of it) use of sleaze and torture, but it just feels forced and becomes a tired method sapping out any real sense of fun. In other words it's dreary and unpleasant… but not effective in its execution to have any sort of impact.

    A wooden Richard Greene plays Fu Manchu's number one nemesis Nayland Smith, but the story doesn't really give his character all that much to do… mainly keeping him rather secondary. So it's not much of a battle between the two and the characters the plot seems to follow (Gotz George & Ricardo Palacios) don't leave much of an impression. Although Howard Marion Crawford was an annoyance. The women in the cast are attractive and this is to serve an important notion in the plot's progression. Some of ladies to show up would be Maria Rohm, Lon von Friedl and Shirley Eaton.
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    Mikale

    Christopher Lee as Fu Manchu and a plot involving a bevy of nubile beauties killing heads of Governments with poison kisses.Surely your set for an enjoyably kitch Hammer film.Sadly no and the reason is probably Jesus(or "Jess" as he's billed here)Franco.This film is every bit as awful as everyone says it is.Put simply there are no redeeming features.Badly made in every possible way and worst of all utterly boring.Lee does very little and what he does makes no sense.I only managed about 45 minutes of this tripe before giving up.I refuse to believe anyone has sat through the entire running time unless they were tied to a chair or have masocistic tendencies.Incredibly the same team made another Fu Manchu film which is said to be even worse-which must've taken some doing!
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    Wenyost

    ...I'd rate it a 0. I almost never write IMDb reviews or any of even the shortest blurbs but after having seen this piece of sh1t I was extremely compelled to say at least SOMETHING.

    I have been having my fun with the previous 3 films, mostly due to the factor of the cheesy and unintentionally hysterical scenes, dialog, and most of all acting by the awesome Nigel Green - the ORIGINAL Nayland Smith. I guess when the script for THIS film approached either him or his agent, they came to their senses and passed on this piece of turd. At least the previous three had an actual "plot". Those were films that were poorly written, but at least well lit/shot and "directed". By no means were great films, but the hilarious (by modern standards) writing and acting made those films very watchable. A good way to have a laugh.

    Now comes along Jesus Franco and the co, and completely SH1TS on everything. You could already tell the film is going downhill when in the first few minutes you find your attention wander off somewhere. I mean, I usually give films a "15 minute rule" where I will watch 15 minutes of the film even if it's downright atrocious just to see if it will get any better (...and even then, I still do finish the film) but even after 15 minutes, I couldn't even understand what the FUK was going on? It was going absolutely nowhere. There is no plot you can follow, the characters are downright moronic, Sancho Lopez - fat dirty Mexican bandit stereotype, oh man, how I hated his guts. The setting makes no sense, no merit. Okay, at least in the earlier Fu Manchu's the characters said some stupid things, but they constantly spew idiotic sh1t in this one. This was atrocious garbage, not in the least entertaining even in a bad way. Boring to tears. Complete and utter retardation of their limits. I don't know what the fuk was everyone smoking, especially the writer ("..a poison..to kill a poison..") when he wrote this piece of gutter trash. This was the worst of my masochistic experiences, I'm surprised I didn't already cut my wrists to slowly bleed, even though that would amplify the pain even more-so. If I was insane and had a gun, I'd blow my brains out...that's how bad this filth is.

    000000000000000000000000000000000000000/10
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    Anardred

    The fourth entry in the Fu Manchu series with Sir Christopher Lee is a very mild diversion at best. Lee, playing the dastardly arch villain, appears to be just going through the motions. This time, his fiendish plan is to abduct a dozen sexy young women, and use them as assassins. Their blood is filled with poison and they are dispatched to various major world cities to murder Fu Manchus' enemies. On the side of good are Fu Manchus' chief nemesis, Nayland Smith (Richard Greene), Carl Jansen, a so-called "archaeologist" (Gotz George), Dr. Petrie (Howard Marion-Crawford), and Ursula Wagner (Maria Rohm), a nurse.

    Another collaboration between screenwriter / producer Harry Alan Towers and the extremely prolific director Jess Franco, this is going to be awfully disappointing for those people that love Francos' ultra-sleazy 1970s output. Titillation is minimal. As a jungle adventure / pulp nonsense bit of entertainment, it's okay, but it falls short of any potential. Overall, it lacks style and energy, and some viewers may even find it boring. Even the action scenes aren't very exciting. The location shooting in Spain and Brazil is adequate, and there are some very fine looking ladies (also including Shirley Eaton of "Goldfinger" fame as The Black Widow) to add to the scenic value.

    Lee is just okay, unfortunately, although there is pleasure in watching Tsai Chin ("You Only Live Twice") as Fu Manchus' sadist daughter Lin Tang, and the lively Marion-Crawford. Ricardo Palacios is amusing as a bandit leader, but the film simply spends too much time with his uninteresting gang. Greene, credited as a "guest star", doesn't get all that much to do.

    If you're a fan of Lee and / or Franco, you could definitely do better than this.

    Five out of 10.
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    Cozius

    Not so good. Christopher Lee's fourth outing as the world's most evil man is pretty tired. It's also decidedly OVER directed by shlockmeister Jess Franco. Endless zooms, camera swirls, and a lot of smoke abound. This time, Lee attempts to kill off his enemies by having ten beautiful women (infected with the venom of a snake) give them a "kiss of death." First up of course is Nayland Smith (played by Richard Green). Set primarily in a South American jungle, this film suffers greatly from some poor production values. Sped up fight scenes, music when there shouldn't be and, more often, NO music when clearly there should be. It's not suspenseful in the least. The acting is so-so with Lee giving it his all and Tsai Chin back as his equally nasty daughter. Maria Rohm and, briefly, Shirley Eaton also appear.