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Gangsters abound in this lively, romantic crime drama that is set in Shanghai during WW II. The tale of Taiwanese patriot Hsu Wen-Chiang begins as he is washed up on a beach near Shanghai. He is taken in by Ting Lik, a kindly beggar who is desperately in love with Feng Ching-Ching, the daughter of a prominent gangster. It isn’t long before Ting Lik successfully rises through the underworld ranks to become one of the city’s most powerful gangsters. Hsu is beside him all the way and uses his own power to get revenge against those who tried to have him killed much earlier. The film’s later focus is on the exploits of Feng who long ago had a relationship with Hsu when he was on the lam in northern China. Back in the present, Hsu and Feng meet again by chance and they resume their affair until Hsu learns that Feng’s father is one of his enemies and kills him. Poor Feng goes mad with grief. Ting finds out and swears revenge upon Hsu.
Down these mean streets a man must come. A hero born, murdered, and born again. When a Rookie cop named Denny Colt returns from the beyond as The Spirit, a hero whose mission is to fight against the bad forces from the shadows of Central City, the Octopus who kills anyone unfortunate enough to see his face who has other plans. He’s going to wipe out the entire city.
This black comedy opens with Louisa Foster donating a multimillion dollar check to the IRS. The tax department thinks she’s crazy and sends her to a psychiatrist. She then discusses her four marriages, in which all of her husbands became incredibly rich and died prematurely because of their drive to be rich.