Sunday, February 14, 2016

Spider-Man: The Dragon's Challenge - Nicholas Hammond (1979) - Kai Tak Airport, Kowloon

I have two very early, although now quite vague, cinematic memories from when I was a youngest in the 1970's. The first memory is when I went to see Star Wars during its original UK cinema run in..erm...1978(?). The second memory I have is when my mum took me to a Saturday morning double bill at the Coventry Odeon. I remember the day was hot and sunny and it was at a time when you could wander into the cinema at any point and the films would play on a loop with perhaps a small break between reel changes. We're still talking about 1978 (I think so anyway, it was a long time ago) because the films on the double bill were Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger and the The Amazing Spider-Man.

The Amazing Spider-Man was actually a TV series pilot starring Nicholas Hammond as Spidey, but it did get a limited theatrical release in the UK and was actually the main reason for us going to the cinema - I was a big Spiderman fan when I was young - the Sinbad film was just an extra bonus. In hindsight, I think we all know which was the better film, but hey I was only about 6 or 7 at the time so what did I know...?

Anyway, The Amazing Spider-Man ran for a couple of seasons in the US before culminating in a double-length finale (called The Chinese Web Parts 1 & 2)  that was eventually edited down into a movie and also given a limited cinema release under the tile The Dragon's Challenge. I don't recall seeing this in the cinema myself (and only have a vague recollection of ever seeing it at all) but over my research into films for this blog was happy to discover that a large portion of it had been filmed in Hong Kong.

Sadly, the only copies currently available are fairly low VHS transfers onto YouTube. It would be great to get a higher definition version because it has plenty of HK locations that we haven't seen on the blog before.

We'll start with the easy stuff which involves (as is usual when a film plot involves the characters heading out the HK) a brief scene revolving around the former International Airport at Kai Tak.

Inside the terminal.
The view from the roof top observation deck.
Taking a car from the front of the terminal, and finally...

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