7 Man Army

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7 Man Army
7ManArmymp.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Chang Cheh
Written by Ni Kuang
Chang Cheh
Starring Ti Lung
David Chiang
Alexander Fu
Chen Kuan-Tai
Music by Chen Yung-yu
Frankie Chan Fan-Kei
Cinematography Kung Mu-To
Edited by Kuo Ting-hung
Production
company
Chang's Film
Shaw Brothers
Distributed by Concorde Film (1977, Netherlands theatrical release)
Release date
1976
Running time
100 minutes
Country Hong Kong
Language Mandarin
Japanese

7 Man Army is a 1976 Hong Kong historical war action film directed by Chang Cheh and starring Ti Lung, David Chiang, Alexander Fu and Chen Kuan-Tai. It was written by Ni Kuang and Chang Cheh. Chan San-Yat and Hsieh Hsing were the action directors. The film is a fictionalized account of the Defense of the Great Wall, during the Second Sino-Japanese war. It was filmed in Taiwan.

Synopsis

During the Second Sino-Japanese War, 20,000 Japanese troops and 50 tanks invade Pa Tou Lou Tzu, or Badaling, a strategic point along the Great Wall of China. The Defense of the Great Wall was one of the earliest battles, or "incidents," between Chinese and Japanese troops.

At Pa Tou Lou Tzu, which is held by the Japanese army, a battalion of the Chinese 25th Division is sandwiched between the fort and an incoming Japanese detachment. Pushed backwards, the Chinese strive to conquer the outpost but are cut down by the defenders' machine gun fire; only six men survive, overwhelm the garrison and occupy the fortress. They are shortly joined by Xiao Shun Zi, a local youth who was orphaned in a bombing and voluntarily signs on as an orderly, and by Private First Class Jia Fu Sheng when the latter comes across the outpost while scouting the enemy's movements.

Cut off from their main force, Commander Wu Chao-cheng decides to defend Pa Tou Lou Tzu in order to prevent their 2nd Division, who is engaging the main enemy force, from being encircled. Although heavily outnumbered, each one of the soldiers stays, mostly for their own personal motives. Wu does so for his sense of patriotism; Chu Tien-cheng's wife was murdered by a band of Japanese ruffians after Chu had beaten them up; Jia Fu Sheng fights to avenge the death of Regimental Commander Wang, who was his instructor during basic training; Pai Zhang-xing joined the army simply to make himself into a better husband for his much-abused wife; the family of Ho Hung-fa, a Mongolian, was killed by Mongolian mercenaries working for the Japanese; Chiang Ming-kun was the leader of a sword-fighting rebel band against the Japanese; and Pan Ping Lin, a former opera actor, joined the army after beating up two Chinese pro-Japan sympathizers who harassed one of his female colleagues.

The next day, a band of Mongolian mercenaries arrive to secure Pa Tou Lou Tzu for the incoming Japanese forces. The seven soldiers fight them off, but some of them escape to inform the Japanese of the fortress' new occupants, and the following day a Japanese regiment attacks in force. Using hit-and-run tactics to balance their vastly inferior numbers, and their martial arts skills for close combat, the seven soldiers hold the enemy off for as long as they can, inflicting massive casualties. Eventually they are all overwhelmed and killed, but they defy the Japanese until the last, with Chu Tien-cheng preventing the fortress' flagpost from being felled by bracing it even as he stiffens in death.

Impressed by the heroic sacrifice of the seven, the Japanese commander has them buried with full military honors. Shortly thereafter the Chinese main force arrives, forcing the Japanese to retreat. As the Chinese honor their fallen comrades, Xiao Shun-Zi joins them to serve his country and to relay the story of the seven's last battle.

Cast

  • Ti Lung as Battalion Commander Wu Chao-cheng
  • David Chiang as Private First Class Pai Zhang-xing
  • Chen Kuan-tai as Private Chiang Ming-kun
  • Alexander Fu Sheng as Private Ho Hung-fa
  • Kuan-Chun Chi as Private Chu Tien-cheng
  • Yi-Min Li as Private Pan Ping Lin (credited as Lee I. Min)
  • Pai Ying as Private First Class Jia Fu Sheng
  • Ting Wa-Chung as Xiao Shun-Zi

See also

External links

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