The Man with the Iron Fists: Seven Clans, a Fortune in Gold (2012)

Posted: November 5, 2012 in Action

For years, the clans of Jungle Village have been feuding over control. When Gold Lion is struck down unexpectedly, Silver Lion takes his place and Zen Yi leaves his fiancee to track down the killer. With word of a shipment of gold soon to pass through the village, the clans and other interested parties start to scheme their way to steal it. In the middle of all of this conflict, a lowly blacksmith is struggling with his role in supplying the warring clans and his desire to take his lover out of the turmoil. When Zen Yi is take to the point of near demise, the blacksmith and his lover sneak him away to nurse him back to health. When the gold arrives, the battle begins and blacksmith gets caught in the fray.

Starring: RZA (Blacksmith), Rick Yune (Zen Yi/X-Blade), Russell Crowe (Jack Knife), Lucy Liu (Madam Blossom), Dave Bautista (Brass Body), Jamie Chung (Lady Silk), Cung Le (Bronze Lion), Byron Mann (Silver Lion), Daniel Wu (Poison Dagger), Zhu Zhu (Chi Chi), Chia Hui Liu (Abbott), Kuan Tai Chen (Gold Lion), Yoyao Hsueh (Copper Lion), Telly Liu (Iron Lion), Andrew Nig (Senior Monk), Ka-Yan Leung (Hyena Chief), Grace Huang (Gemini Female), Andrew Lin (Gemini Male), Hong Jia (Jackal Captain), Dennis Chan (Dragon Innkeeper), Gang Zhou (Crazy Hippo), Pam Grier (Jane), Jake Garber (Jake), Beau van Erven Dorens (Bo), Jon T. Benn (Master John)

Starring and directing the film, RZA takes a very calm approach to his character’s role in the story until all hell breaks loose. Rick Yune represents the determined hero and has a somewhat regal presence. Russell Crowe is definitely a treat, especially since his character is an interesting mix of depraved sexuality and heroism. Lucy Liu seems to take back a bit of her persona from Kill Bill but with a little more reserve. Bautista’s character may be a little simple, but his performance is no less impactful.


The storyline for this film is one that is focused on the issues of greed, love and revenge. The Lion clan was one divided. Though the other clans were all at odds, the Lion clan ruled with more of a fairness toward the people of Jungle Village. With Gold Lion’s death and the coming gold, the fight for power took different forms for different clans. The Lion clan took the opportunity to exert their dominance. The Hyena and Wolf clans operated with more violence but in an effort to take down the dominant Lions. The Geminis were trying to protect the gold but also were going to struggle against the ruling clan. Meanwhile, Blossom’s clan operated in secret and used stealth as their primary method of attack. Meanwhile, the hero’s journey for revenge and the blacksmith’s role in the story were ones complicated by loss and pain. Both men felt challenged being separated from their loves but both held a heavy burden to take vengeance against the traitorous Lion clan.


The film is one that was developed by RZA and supported by Tarantino, and it has the feeling of many of the classic Tarantino films. The main problem is that there is a bit less finesse in the way the film was cut together. Many of the scenes were either too blurry or happened too quickly to get a full feel for the action in play. The story was also a little confusing at times because the dialogue was either too choppy or certain arcs were underdeveloped. On the other hand, the action that you could follow was awe-inspiring. The best fight of the film include the Gemini twins, who use a style of fighting that puts them either in unison or battling as a single unit. Brass Body appears to be an impossible being to defeat and becomes the surprising ultimate villain of the film, even though he is not the mastermind of the gold mission.

While The Man with the Iron Fists may not be a perfect film, RZA’s first venture into the direction of a feature film is not without its pleasures. The DVD/BluRay release may be able to clean up some of the visual miscues that the film failed to prepare before its release.

Dan’s Rating: 2.5/5


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