I was a huge fan of Cynthia Rothrock back in the day - damn skillful, as well as beautiful She was actually highly well regarded as well.
Michelle Yeoh of course is great, as well as Karen Shepard (who I first remember seeing as the villainess in Cyborg 2 with a young Angelina Jolie).
For me, Cynthia Khan was also great to watch. I was a big fan of HK cinema, especially the female stars. Maggie Cheung will always be one of my all time loves, as well as the very talented and tragic Anita Mui.
For some reason, people think "girl power" and all that jazz was invented 5 years ago or something. Its been around for a lot longer, if you actually care to look. And I'm not talking the standard Sarah Conner/Ripley character.
Look up "The Heroic Trio" (or Dung Fong Sam Hap, to give it its original title), and its sequel. Great, fun film, about three "superheroines"
Or the more tragic Bride with White Hair., starring Brigitte Lin. The Bride was apparently Tapert's inspiration for creating Xena.