Set in late 19th century Canton this martial arts film depicts the stance taken by the legendary martial arts hero Wong Fei-Hung (1847-1924) against foreign forces' (English, French and ... See full summary »
This Hong Kong martial-arts extravaganza tells of evil emperors and true love. The secret Red Lotus Flower Society is committed to the overthrow of the evil Manchu Emperor and his minions. ... See full summary »
Two friends, ex Shaolin monks, part ways as they brush with the ongoing rebellion against the government. The ambitious one rises up to be a powerful military commander, while his betrayed friend resorts to learn the calm ways of Tai Chi.
In the sequel to the Tsui Hark classic, Wong Fei-Hung faces The White Lotus society, a fanatical cult seeking to drive the Europeans out of China through violence, even attacking Chinese ... See full summary »
The Cantonese hero Fong Sai Yuk becomes involved in the secret brotherhood "The Red Flower", who are trying to overthrow the Manchurian emperor and re-establishing the Ming dynasty. The ... See full summary »
A young father and his infant son are beset by forces of evil and corruption. They wander China, upholding their sense of honor and protecting the weak. When they are forced into combat, ... See full summary »
An undercover cop struggling to provide for his son and ailing wife, must infiltrate a ruthless gang. But things turn sour when another cop blows his cover and he quickly finds himself battling for his life and the lives of his family.
A corrupt businessman commits a murder and the only witness is the girlfriend of another businessman with close connections to the Chinese government, so a bodyguard from Beijing is ... See full summary »
Chen Zhen, a Chinese engineering student in Kyoto, who braves the insults and abuse of his Japanse fellow students for his local love Mitsuko Yamada, daughter of the director, returns in 1937 to his native Shangai, under Japanse protectorate -in fact military occupation- after reading about the death of his kung-fu master Huo Yuan Jia in a fight against the Japanese champion Ryuichi Akutagawa. While overcoming suspicion and ambition within the kungfu school, Chen exhumes his master to prove Hou's defeat was the result of poisoning. Both nationalities make the case a test of honor, so Chinese and Japanese pride are at stake when it culminates in Chen's final epic duel against the ruthless, undefeated Japanese general Fujita. Written by
Simply put, Fist of Legend is one of the very best martial arts films ever made. It stands in a group with Bruce Lee's Enter the Dragon, Jackie Chan's Drunken Master II, and...as soon as I think of anything as good as those three, I'll let you know.
Choreographed by the legendary Yuen Wo-Ping, this is Jet Li at his best (and that's saying a lot, folks). Eschewing the aerial wire stunts, Li relies on skill, speed and agility, and is more than up to the task. These fights - and there are a lot of them - are stunning. But the real wonder is that there's a real movie here underneath all the stuntwork. Interesting characters, an intriguing plot, and conflict that goes deeper than "you killed my master"; there's even some political comment. This is a thinly-veiled remake of Bruce Lee's "Fist of Fury" (or "The Chinese Connection" in the US, for some bizarre reason), but the story's been widened and given more depth. There's less Japanese-bashing, with more of an attempt to pin blame on individuals instead of nationalities.
If Jet Li is ever going to have a formidable American presence, it's films like this one that should be making the conversion, instead of merely above-average fare like "Black Mask".
15 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?