This movie is lighthearted and fun, and apparently goes by many names. The copy I have is called "Lady Wu Tang", on Flashlegs it goes by the name "The Fight for Shaolin Tamo Systique" or "Fight for Survival". By any name it's still very enjoyable. I love Polly Shang Kuan, and this movie is all Polly. It never takes itself seriously for a moment. Don't watch it if you're looking for alot of fighting, because there isnt much until the end. What comes before the end is alot of weirdness, and bizarre special effects.
Polly plays a young girl that wants very badly to join the Shaolin Temple, even though they don't accept women. Two disciples Ching Feng and Ming Yuen, see her kneeling outside for 3 days and decide to use her to carry their water for one year, telling her that she will be accepted after that, even though they have no authority to do so. During her trips up and down the mountain carrying the water she meets an old Shaolin monk that lives in a cave. He befriends her and she starts bringing him water as well. A year passes (very quickly) and the Abbot is telling the disciples that they can now begin to train since they carried water for one year. Polly overhears this and speaks up saying she carried the water not them. The Abbot apologizes but says he still can't allow her to come in. Suddenly the Old Monk living in the cave comes flying over the temple to confront the Abbot. He says never mind he will be the girls teacher and takes her inside the temple to combat the traps that are laid out. First they have to fight off the monks trying to block their entrance. Considering Polly hasn't trained yet she manages to knock more than a few monks to the side (which doesn't say much for Shaolin's training). They defeat the traps and the Abbot asks a favor, would the old Monk help find the stolen Tamo classics? It was stolen by 10 different imposters. The old monk agrees and starts training Polly. She learns to box, and can make her arms grow very long for far reaching. She learns kicking, and can elongate her legs so she stands 10 feet tall. She can also break boulders with her head. After awhile she begins to grow a mustache and turn into a man! It seems she has been practicing only Positive kung fu, to help balance her out she needs to learn Negative kung fu. The old monk can't remember Negative kung fu, and Polly won't stop crying so he pretends to die. A funeral is held for him at Shaolin and his body is dipped in gold (ouch), all the while he is really still alive.
The Abbot agrees to accept Polly if she can complete the Mark of the Dragon test. She must carry a burning hot cauldron up the stairs which burns the imprint of a dragon into her skin. She suceeds and the next day sets off with Ching Feng and Ming Yuen to find the Tamo Classics.
They stop at a school to question everyone, but the students flee after seeing Polly's cool skills. Their master (Wong Tao in a role that's much to small) confronts her, and after a brief fight, she explains her mission, he says he will look into it.
For the sake of convenience all 10 imposters seem to be living in the next town they come to so Polly finds everyone rather quickly. There is Negative classic, a man that became a woman because of using only the negative technique. Boxing classic, a man who's arms are unusually long and stay that way, because as Polly says "he is so evil". There are the 2 Foot classics one that walks on his hands and speaks backwards, and the other with permanently long legs. There is another Positive classic like Polly a woman changed into a man, and a couple of Poison classics and Invisible classics. Needless to say there is alot of silly fighting going on. We also have some gender confusion as Negative classic (who hates men) falls in love with Polly, who she (he) thinks is a man. Luckily each imposter just happens to be carrying their copy of the Tamo classic so Polly is able to collect them all.
The movie gets a bit muddled at this point, and we cut to a scene of the 10 masters complaining that Shaolin Temple is holding their disciples prisoner and they want them back. They storm the temple and confront the Abbot. He says the disciples are being changed back into their original selves and will be released when they are ready. The 10 Masters decide to go in the temple to look for themselves. Each master must fight one of the oddly made up Shaolin monks, (although we only see 4 fights). This is where we see some actual fighting, but it is still rather cartoonish with slide whistle sound effects and odd animal noises. Wong Tao makes another appearance, and fights well as always. The Masters confront the Abbot again and threaten to fight with the Chin Kan Battle Line, which kind of looks like they are doing the Bunny Hop. Ching Feng and Ming Yuen hear this and get the Old Monk from inside. The know he isn't really dead and they need his help. The battle line begins with the 10 Masters all holding the shoulder of the one in front of them, they rise into the air, and the old monk (who is in some kind of large vase (?)) flies into the air as well. They collide and the vase breaks open. Polly (who for some reason has golden paint on her face and hair) rushes to meet him. He explains he was only faking being dead. The 10 disciples are back to normal and are released. The old monk starts to laugh and drops dead for real. The End.
Wow. What more can I say? Crack open a few beers, or wine or sake or whatever your poison is, leave reality behind and enjoy.