The film opens with a superb opening sequence that closely echoes Sergio Leone's classic Western 'Once Upon A Time In The West' - with a young Carter Wong witnessing the brutal massacre of his family at the hands of Tin Erh Keng (Chang Yi in formidable form here..) and his two guards of the East & North Cities - Sammo Hung & Hau Pak Wai.
Carter (Yang) is accepted into the Shaolin Temple and begins the usual rigorous training to learn Kung Fu in order to avenge his family and overthrow Tin Erh Keng once and for all.
A familiar story of course, but what makes this superb film a winner is the non stop action and the cast of favourites who are nearly all on top form here.
Polly Kuan plays Hsaio Yun who is Chang Yi's adopted daughter. At first she seems to be fairly villainous but is later revealed to have secret goal all of her own. This is one of her more fiercer fighting roles and it's refreshing to see her character devoid of the comedy which plagues some of her other roles.
Sammo Hung & Hau Pak Wai give good performances as Chang Yi's ruthless right hand men - though I thought Sammo was a little under used, he has a nice but brief three section staff fight with Carter Wong near the end of the film.
Other highlights are Chang Yi's guard formation - the Tien Lo Set who prove to be difficult adversaries but the real magic is saved for the final showdown between Chang Yi, Polly and Carter Wong. Chang Yi is as menacing as ever in this film and has the ability to claw into his opponents chests with one fatal strike. Speaking of which there is quite a bit of bloody violence in Traitorous too - eyes are gouged out and even an arm is hacked off. It's all directed rather convincingly and expertly by Sung Ting Mei who I dont think I had heard of before. Capped of with some great use of some 70's prog rock music in the massacre flashbacks (**If anyone knows what this music is please let me know!**) and you have a certified must have film which gets my top recommendation!
Go for the subbed version to get the full appreciation of Chang Yi's menace!