“Lady of Steel” is a 1970 Shaw Brothers martial arts wuxia film directed by Ho Meng-Hua and was released by Shout Factory as part of their Shaw Brothers Classics Collection Volume 2 box set.
“Lady of Steel” stars Cheng Pei-Pei and Yueh Hua and weaves together the familiar tropes from this era of Shaw Brothers productions. Prepare to be intrigued by the age-old tradition of a woman being consistently mistaken for a man, as well as the mesmerizing use of darts and daggers as formidable weapons.
On the positive side, “Lady of Steel” boasts unique and colorful characters, stunning costumes, and meticulously crafted art direction. The setup of the story is engaging, quickly drawing viewers into its enchanting narrative. Keep an eye out for the beggar clan, filled with intriguing characters that you’ll wish you could spend more time with.
However, as with any film, “Lady of Steel” has its share of shortcomings. As the story unfolds, it takes some unexpected and messy turns, making it challenging to keep track of the narrative. Even our martial arts heroine, Cheng Pei-Pei, seems to get lost in her own movie at times. The line between hero and villain becomes blurred, leaving us puzzled about who’s truly a traitor or antagonist. Cheng Pei-Pei’s character engages in a fair amount of sneaking and assassination attempts, which might raise questions about her martial arts expertise.