Cat vs. Rat (1982) Review

"Cat vs. Rat" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"Cat vs. Rat" Chinese Theatrical Poster

AKA: Cat Versus Rat
Director: Lau Kar Leung
Writer: Ni Kuang
Producer: Mona Fong Yat Wah
Cast: Alexander Fu Sheng, Adam Cheng, Hsiao Ho, Kara Hui Ying Hung, Lau Kar Wing, Gordon Liu Chia Hui, Lydia Shum Tin Ha, Lam Fai Wong, Johnny Wang Lung Wei, Lung Tien Hsiang
Running TIme: 92 min.

By JJ Hatfield

This is an unusual Shaw Brothers movie, especially considering the director was Lui Chia-Liang. The company apparently was looking at more comedy boosting the kung fu and old school films.

Cat vs. Rat is all comedy. No, it is an attempt to be a comedy. There is a shred of a plot with Alexander Fu Sheng being obsessed with proving he is the best swordsman around and his school mate and equally skilled school brother (Adam Cheng) feeling much the same (Every now and then Adam Cheng reminded me of a young David Chiang).

With a cast including Hsiao Ho (Hou), Kara Hui, Gordon Liu Chia Hui, Alexander Fu Sheng – this should have been a better movie. The Master repeatedly tells them they are exactly equally skilled, but both sides tend to engage in ridiculous lame tests/tournaments. Their entire family, the whole neighborhood is in an uproar because of their activities.

But Fu Sheng is particularly annoying. There is a talented cast ready and waiting and they should have received decent roles or better yet just not made this movie. I was going to try to look for something good to mention, but I don’t want to have to watch it again. This movie sucks.

By JJ Hatfield’s Rating: 2.5/10

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About JJ Hatfield

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5 Responses to Cat vs. Rat (1982) Review

  1. Wow, that sucks this movie was such a let down, especially with an amazing cast, just as you wrote. Was always wondering about it… Fu Sheng, annoying? Is that possible? =D I guess these comedies were a product of Shaw Brothers on their last leg, trying to compete with the on-going “prime” of Jackie Chan and the Golden Harvest crew…

  2. JJ Hatfield says:

    I was disappointed with this one for sure. I think the SB studios looked around and said hey let’s be all comedy and the director said okay – here. Cat vs. Rat did become annoying, and by the “final fight’ I was not laughing. Maybe Lau Kar Leung was tired of the work environment….I really don’t know what could have made this a great movie – it had Fu Sheng, the golden boy and perhaps the studio thought that was enough. But with such a talented group of proven actors/martial artists it just did not come together

    This was a tough time for the Shaws and would only get worse with the loss of Fu Sheng.

    • Oh, well, at least they came back hard with “Eight Diagram Pole Fighter” (which I’m assuming came totally after this movie); unless they were filming them back to back.

      • JJ Hatfield says:

        Actually they were filmed somewhat together.

        “Eight Diagram Pole Fighter” started shooting in 1981. Fu Sheng was supposed to have injured himself on set and couldn’t continue shooting fight scenes, stunts, etc. That much can be confirmed.

        What happened, which scene, who knows. Supposedly this was one of the reasons the director, Lau Kar Leung filmed “Cat vs. Rat” which would allow Fu Sheng (or anyone else injured) some time to heal before doing intense “EDPF” shooting. Then they resumed shooting with minor injuries but things were going better when Fu Sheng was killed.

        Production was stopped and the director didn’t know what they would do with a half filmed movie whose star was now gone. Fu Sheng was originally the brother that goes to Shaolin.

        Read my review of “Eight Diagram Pole Fighter” if you are interested. I go further into the situation.

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