Black Mask (1996) Blu-ray version

Eureka Entertainment bring us the dazzling and explosive martial arts, comic book superhero extravaganza “Black Mask” starring Jet Li, presented on Blu-ray FULLY UNCUT from a new 2K restoration.

Available now in the UK (Blu-ray debut), and in North America (uncut for the first time on Blu-ray).

Released as part of the Eureka Classics range in a LIMITED EDITION set (2000 copies only per territory). The set will feature an O-card slipcase, collector’s booklet PLUS a BONUS DISC featuring an alternate Taiwanese cut and an extended version of the film.

The “Black Mask” Blu-ray version is OUT NOW via Eureka Video and Amazon!



Martial arts superstar Jet Li steps away from portraying historical kung fu masters to play comic book superhero “Tsui Chik/Simon aka Black Mask”.

Since the early 1980s, Li established himself as one of Asia’s most popular movie stars with roles in movies such as “The Shaolin Temple/”, “Swordsman II”, Fong Sai Yuk”, “Fist of Legend”, and of course the “Once Upon a Time in China” films.

He would go onto have a successful international career in films such as “Lethal Weapon 4”, “The One”, “Romeo Must Die”, “Kiss of the Dragon”, “Forbidden Kingdom“, “Hero“, “Fearless” and “The Expendables” franchise.

Acclaimed actor Sean Lau Ching-wan stars as “Inspector Shek Wai-Ho”. A star of both television and cinema, Lau is a versatile actor who has appeared in popular hits such as “C’est la vie, mon chéri”, “Bomb Disposal Officer: Baby Bomb”, “Big Bullet”, “Full Alert”, “Running Out of Time”, the “Overheard” trilogy, “The White Storm”, and “Call of Heroes“.

Asian pop star and actress Karen Mok stars as “Tracy Lee”. She has appeared in over forty movies including Stephen Chow’s “God of Cookery”, “King of Comedy”, “Shaolin Soccer“, as well as the films “Twins Effect”, “Around the World in Eighty Days” and “Man of Tai Chi“.

Canadian actress Françoise Yip stars as “Yeuk-Lan”. Yip appeared alongside Jackie Chan in “Rumble in the Bronx” and Jet Li in “Romeo Must Die”.

Film director and Shaw Brothers veteran Patrick Lung Kong has fun acting as “Commander Hung Kuk”. Prolific Hong Kong actor Anthony Wong plays “King Kau”. he has appeared in such notable movies as the “Infernal Affairs” trilogy, the popular “Young and Dangerous” film series, and John Woo’s “Hard Boiled”.

He has won the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor three times, for “The Untold Story” (1993), “Beast Cops” (1998) and “Still Human” (2018). He also played the legendary Wing Chun Master in “Ip Man: Final Fight”.

Martial artist, actor, stuntman and action director Hung Yan-Yan, sometimes credited as Xiong Xin Xin, appears as “Jimmy”. Having trained in martial arts from the age of 12, Hung was a multiple Chinese wushu champion before director Lau Kar-Leung employed him as Jet Li’s stunt double in “Martial Arts of Shaolin”.

He would go on to double for Li several times, including in the “Once Upon a Time in China” films. He played the leader of the White Lotus Sect, “Kau-kung Priest Gao”, in the second movie, before establishing himself in the “Club Foot” role for the sequels, which he also reprised for 2018’s “Kung Fu League”.

He quickly gained an admirable reputation as a martial arts action performer, stuntman and choreographer in his own right. He was the main villain “Prince Twelve” in Yuen Woo Ping‘s “Hero Among Heroes/ Fist of the Red Dragon” starring Donnie Yen. Hung followed Tsui Hark to Hollywood in 1998, making a brief performance in “Double Team”. He later returned to Hollywood as stunt choreographer for “The Musketeer”.

British martial artist turned stuntman Mike Lambert plays a deadly 701 team member. Lambert was a successful Taekwondo competitor before following his dream of working in films and packing his bags for Hong Kong.

He appeared in films such as Jackie Chan’s “Thunderbolt” and “Who Am I?“, and Jean-Claude Van Damme‘s “The Quest” and “Knock Off“. He would later appear opposite Jet Li as “The Stranger” for the acclaimed final fight in “Unleashed/Danny the Dog”. Lambert’s return to the UK saw him become a British Stunt Performer and Fight Coordinator contributing to notable titles including “Batman Begins”, “Harry Potter”, “The Bourne Ultimatum“, “Kick Ass 1 & 2”, “Captain America”, “Game of Thrones”, “Justice League“, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”, and “The Flash”, to name but a few.


Tsui Chik is a librarian who leads a quiet, unassuming life – or, at least, that’s what he wants people to believe.

In truth, he was once a member of the 701 Squad, a group of elite combatants produced by a failed super-soldier project. In kind with his former comrades, his central nervous system has been altered to render him impervious to pain.

When several of his fellow test subjects resurface and embark on a crimewave under the leadership of their former commander Hung Kuk, Tsui is forced to use his extraordinary abilities once more. Donning a costume, he sets out to face his past – as the vigilante known as the Black Mask.

BLACK MASK Original Hong Kong Trailer


The movie opens in explosive fashion with Jet Li in an extended shootout against dozens of soldiers in various armoured vehicles.

It seems to be a new level (at the time of release) of violence for a Jet Li movie. This is compounded further as it enters gory horror territory when a bomb is inserted into someone’s chest cavity.

BLACK MASK “The Hospital operation scene” Clip

The horror and the gore continue with various appendages being lopped off, graphic limb crushing, and several impaling

Jet Li has his first decent fist fight against British martial artist Winston Ellis. As Li flies around firing off wushu kicks, Ellis counters with a hard-hitting kickboxing style

BLACK MASK “The Black Mask parachutes in” Clip

For all the gory violence, it should be noted that the special effects are surprisingly good. For instance, people are shot in the head with a realism that leaves very little to the imagination

Francoise Yip has a thrilling rooftop fight against Jet Li as they negotiate a tall and treacherous metal gantry.

Sean Lau has a more conventional and stylish fight with Jet Li in a cemetery. It’s much more in keeping with Li’s previous work such as “Fist of Legend“.

BLACK MASK Original Home Video Trailer

The finale literally kicks off with a classic fight between our hero and British martial artist and stunt performer, Mike Lambert.

Lambert incorporates his rapid, high-kicking Taekwondo skills whilst taking trademark Hong Kong movie action hits and falls.

The conclusion sees an intense and extended duel with Patrick Lung Kong as the main villain, utilising comic book gore and hyperkinetic action.


I haven’t seen this movie since the days of VHS. My hazy memory seems to recall an incoherent, badly lit, badly dubbed film in which all the fights were ridiculously sped up and choppily edited.

I am pleased to report that the restoration job on this Blu-ray demonstrates how stylishly lit and filmed this production actually was.

The shootout action is hyper violent, and the martial arts fights are full of Yuen Woo Ping’s flavour, without massive under-cranking of the camera.

BLACK MASK Original 1996 Export Trailer

The plot is still mostly incoherent. However, there are three distinct cuts of this film in the package, each featuring unique additional or different scenes, and very different soundtracks.

The Hong Kong print features an insightful commentary from Frank Djeng, with the international version covered by the Morecambe and Wise of audio commentaries, Mike Leeder and Arne Venema. I love that Venema reveals he is a fan of the Sega Saturn games console and can name all the games featured in the background of certain scenes!

Additional features include a new interview with martial artist turned stunt coordinator Mike Lambert. It’s a fascinating and very entertaining look at how his career developed from a naive 21 year old rocking up in Hong Kong to Hollywood fight coordinator. Nice to hear him name check the videogame Bruce Lee on the ZX Spectrum!

This is one of those movies that is improved upon with an upgraded re-release. It’s certainly a much better looking film than I remember, and the fight scenes don’t seem as ridiculously sped up as they did in the western VHS release.

With the three versions of the film packed onto two discs, there is plenty here for fans of Jet Li’s work just before he broke out in Hollywood!


  • The film is an adaptation of the 1992 Manhua (Chinese version of Manga comics) “Black Mask” by Li Chi-Tak.
  • A sequel “Black Mask 2: City of Masks” was released in 2002 starring Andy On and featuring Scott Adkins, Tyler Mane and Rob Van Dam.
  • The hero’s suit, hat and mask pay homage to Bruce Lee’s character “Kato” from the 1960’s “Green Hornet” television show. Donnie Yen adopted the same look for his movie “Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen”.
  • Jet Li and Françoise Yip reunited in 2000 for “Romeo Must Die“, and Li would face off once more with stuntman Mike Lambert in 2005’s “Unleashed“.
Black Mask (1996) - Blu-ray - KUNG FU KINGDOM

Black Mask (1996) – Blu-ray – KUNG FU KINGDOM

Film Rating: 7.5/10

The action-packed BLACK MASK Blu-ray version is AVAILABLE NOW via Eureka Video and Amazon!

Does this rank among your favourite Jet Li films, or do you prefer his historical movies? Which other classics would you like to see hitting a high definition re-release? Let us know in the comments below; Like, share and join in the conversation on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter & Instagram!

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Glen Stanway

Influenced by the movies of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan, Glen began training in martial arts and gymnastics in 1995. He made his first of many visits to Malaysia and Singapore in 1998 to learn Chin Woo kung fu under the supervision of Master Teng Wie Yoo. Glen is the author of "The Art of Coaching" and "Fearless The Story of Chin Woo Kung Fu", and runs a kung fu & kickboxing school in Hertfordshire, England.

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