7.5/10
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123 user 63 critic

Fist of Legend (1994)

Jing wu ying xiong (original title)
In 1937, a Chinese martial artist returns to Shanghai to find his teacher dead and his school harassed by the Japanese.

Director:

Gordon Chan

Writers:

Gordon Chan (screenplay), Kwong Kim Yip (screenplay) (as Ip Kwong Kim)
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Jet Li ... Chen Zhen
Shinobu Nakayama Shinobu Nakayama ... Mitsuko Yamada
Siu-Ho Chin ... Hou Ting-En
Billy Chow ... General Fujita (Supreme Killer) (as Billy Chau)
Yasuaki Kurata ... Fuimo Funakoshi
Paul Chun ... Uncle Noh (as Paul Chiang)
Ada Choi ... Rose
Cheung-Yan Yuen ... Captain Jie
Toshimichi Takahashi Toshimichi Takahashi ... Japanese Ambassador
Suk-Mui Tam ... Wei
Jackson Lou ... Ryuichi Akutagawa (as Lou Hsueh Hsien)
Sun Wong ... Cook
Man Biu Lee ... Biu
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
E.E. Bell ... (voice)
Shaun Britton Shaun Britton ... English Gentleman at Dock
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Storyline

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 KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

To avenge his masters death, He'll fight like never before!

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong martial arts violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Hong Kong

Release Date:

22 December 1994 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

Fist of Legend See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Eastern Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The roof can be seen during the final fight scene indicating wires are only used to pull the characters left and right and not above. See more »

Goofs

In the final fight between Chen Zen and Gen. Fujita, every time Fujita falls to the ground his hair is longer, revealing it to be a stunt double. See more »

Quotes

Fumio Funakoshi: What style is that?
Chen Zhen: don't ask! if it works, it's a good one!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Out of Print RITEK version from Taiwan contains approximately 3 minutes of extra footage showing the headmaster using opium with the prostitute. See more »

Connections

Followed by Fist of Legends 2: Iron Bodyguards (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Come for the fights, stay for the movie
15 February 2006 | by gwailo247See all my reviews

A remake of Bruce Lee's Fist of Fury, this movie gives us amazing martial arts sequences, with good plot and acting in between.

The fights are spectacular. A lot of martial arts movies incorporate wonderful movements and acrobatics, designed to show off the skill and grace of the fighter. However in a life or death struggle, these sometimes seem out of place. This is a "realistic" martial arts movie. You almost feel yourself cringing with each hit. As the man said: "These lads are out to hurt each other." This is fighting in its purest, taking cue from Bruce Lee's personal style, where the aim is to defeat your opponent in the most efficient manner possible. The opening fight of the movie sets its style right away and continues to its climax.

But what made this movie go above and beyond a martial arts flick is the storyline and plot. This movie deals with themes of racism, tolerance and acceptance not only between the Chinese and Japanese, but within each group as well. Here Jet Li shines in his performance. While events cause him to lose his composure and give in to his feelings, at the core you see that he is a righteous person. When he realizes the correct course of action, either by himself, or when it is pointed out by others, he does what is right. And we see the people around him learn from his behavior and they seek to emulate it.

The movie also tries to present a rather fair view of both the Chinese and Japanese. Neither side is portrayed as good or evil, rather as normal human beings, running the whole spectrum from selfish to noble, from hateful to kind.

As a martial arts movie, this is one of the best ever made, but it stands on its own as a good film, one dealing with a historical subject that has a very strong resonance even today.


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