Legendary martial artist Bruce Lee is the subject of this thoughtful documentary by Lee aficionado John Little. Using interviews, behind-the-scenes footage and action sequences from Lee's ... See full summary »
Enter the Dragon revolves around the three main characters. Lee, a man recruited by an agency to investigate a tournament hosted by Han, since they believe he has an Opium trade there. Roper and Williams are former army buddies since Vietnam and they enter the tournament due to different problems that they have. Roper is on the run from the Mafia due to his gambling debts, while Williams is harassed by racist police officers and defends himself from them and uses the car for his getaway. It is a deadly tournament that they will enter on an island. Lee's job is to get the other two out of there alive. Written by
Many of the fight scenes were choreographed, rehearsed and filmed in eight days straight which took it's toll on John Saxon. See more »
When Lee breaks into Han's underground lab for the last time, he is wearing black socks. The next morning, when he fights Han (after being locked up all night and never changing clothes), he is wearing white socks. See more »
I see your talents have gone beyond the mere physical level. Your skills are now at the point of spiritual insight. I have several questions. What is the highest technique you hope to achieve ?
To have no technique.
Very good. What are your thoughts when facing an opponent ?
There is no opponent.
And why is that ?
Because the word "I" does not exist.
A good fight should be like a small play, but played seriously. A good martial artist does not become tense,...
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As a child, one of my first and best friends was a strange boy who worshiped the ground Bruce Lee walked on - cutting his hair, taking Jiu Jitsu and Hapkido lessons, and often stalking around with that intense animal fury that only Lee could create all over his 7 year old face. My friend took a lot of abuse for this and other odd behaviors with dignity that his hero would have applauded. Unfortunately, Mr. Lee passed from this world very young, leaving a legend and a pair of shoes that have never really been filled. For most Americans, this is the only Hollywood film worthy of mention with his name in the cast.
Don't get me wrong, I love Jackie Chan and Jet Li and even the few Chow Yun Fat roles involving martial arts, but each of these actors have their own, very big, personalities, and - at least in the case of Chan - have built their own unique legend. Unlike his successors, what Lee excelled at was the intense physicality and drama of his performance. He worked every muscle of his body in every beautifully choreographed fight scene of Enter The Dragon, and made art out of violence in ways that today's Hollywood gun violence schlock-directors can only dream of. And Enter the Dragon is one of his most stunning vehicles.
The pseudo-Taoisms are kept to a minimum and concentrated near the beginning of this film. Lee enters a martial arts tournament to avenge the murder of his sister, and to defend the honor of the Shao Lin Temple, where he helps to train young martial artists. John Saxon, a down-on-his luck playboy and brigand is the closest thing to a co-star, and comes to the tournament hoping for a solution to his financial problems. The tournament is hosted by a mass-murdering heroin manufacturer who hides his production facilities, literally, beneath a martial arts school, using the instructors and students in the school as an army of body guards. Kien Shih is absolutely compelling as the evil Han, even if his fight scenes are, at times, a bit less convincing than the master Lee's. Lee and Shih are the performance highlights of the film. Though Saxon does a passable job, his performance is a bit fibrous at times.
Worth seeing for the sets and settings alone, this film is driven well by its fast pace, simple but engaging story line, and the sheer talent of Bruce Lee. Of course, there are the usual problems of the martial arts genre - villains whose sense of honor for the most part only applies to life-threatening situations fighting would-be heroes, the lack of any weapons besides fists and unused knives, unnecessary nude scenes - it is very easy to overlook these problems and just enjoy the film.
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