Bruce Lee movies are 1) possibly racist 2) definitely often anti-climactic

I have seen EVERY movie starring Bruce Lee. PS – That’s only 5 movies. Here’s a common theme in these movies: set up some guy or group as being pretty tough, then have Bruce very easily destroy the guy or group. Most of the fighters in these movies are Chinese, Japanese, or European/American whites. PS – I’m using common, international names for these movies (THE BIG BOSS, FIST OF FURY, RETURN OF THE DRAGON, ENTER THE DRAGON, GAME OF DEATH).

Almost all Chinese fighters are at least somewhat formidable, even if they look and act like clumsy asses. Take the Chinese guy that Bruce fights at the end of THE BIG BOSS (can’t remember its American name) – he just looks like an older, more Chinese version of Jim Meier but he gives Bruce a run for his money. So does the old dork with a fake hand in ENTER THE DRAGON. Other Chinese fighters are usually set up as being somewhat tough and live up to expectations, like the pricks near the end of GAME OF DEATH.

Whites are often set up as tough, only to be very easily disposed of. First, the most famous example – Chuck Norris in RETURN OF THE DRAGON. His character is supposed to be the karate world champion (if I remember correctly) but apparently he fights as a mercenary, as well. Eventually, he fights Bruce in the CLIMACTIC CONCLUSION fight, which is competitive for about 30 seconds before Bruce spends the rest of the fight breaking Chuck’s arm, leg and then neck with the greatest of ease. Or how about the Russian guy at the end of FIST OF FURY? Or O’Hara, the supposedly invincible guy in ENTER THE DRAGON? Or the fucking pro fighter in GAME OF DEATH that Lee doesn’t even break a sweat on? That’s right, in 4 of Lee’s 5 movies, there’s a white guy that is presented as somewhere between pretty tough to super touch, and Lee beats all their assholes without any problem. John Saxon is very unconvincingly presented as a tough fighter in ENTER THE DRAGON, an American-produced movie. His character doesn’t fight Lee.

Unless I’m mistaken, Japanese fighters only appear in FIST OF FURY but Jesus, are they pathetic – to the point that it’s not the least bit interesting. Basically, Lee strolls into a dojo and beats up every guy in the place every bit as effectively as Superman could manage. Yeah, I get it – it’s a statement and the Chinese hate the Japanese but, holy shit, it’s just dumb.

There’s a black dude, played by Kareem Abdul Jabar, that fights Bruce in GAME OF DEATH. He’s actually quite formidable. He was also Lee’s student in real life so perhaps that explains his unusual status as the only non-Chinese opponent to make Bruce sweat. One of the main characters in ENTER THE DRAGON is black but he’s killed pretty easily by an old Chinese geek.

Lee’s status as film icon is somewhat unearned. His movies always have long, boring stretches and they usually serve vehicles for him to easily destroy dudes. THE KARATE KID is way better than any Bruce Lee movie even though its fighting is slow and unimpressive. It’s the DRAMA that makes it exciting. Tony Jaa movies are a lot better than Lee movies, too – the stunts are boss and his charactesr don’t just beat everyone without blinking an eye.



11 responses to “Bruce Lee movies are 1) possibly racist 2) definitely often anti-climactic

  1. miloprometheus

    I like Bruce Lee a lot, but like James Dean his premature death has bestowed him with a legendary status that, perhaps, he wouldn’t have had he continued to live and make a lot more movies.

  2. excellent comments. i saw fist of fury and was thinking exactry the same thing – stoopid characters

  3. man stfu. do you really have no clue whatsoever? for ww2, expressing yourself in a movie, is perfectly fine.

  4. Your a faggot, his movies arent suppossed to be realistic, look at american movies with white guy as the hero, they are portrayed as invincible, undefeatable and destroy everyone they see. Bruce lee intended his movies to be heroic and inspiring,especially for chinese people. His movies are the same as american hero movies, only this time its not a white guy as the hero and you criticize it. Your the racist one here.

  5. they used Bruce’s image after his death for some energy drink commercial in Japan

  6. “One of the main characters in ENTER THE DRAGON is black but he’s killed pretty easily by an old Chinese geek.”

    ^^^You’re reaching. If you remember, Williams kicked Han’s hand/arm, which (unknown to Williams) is made of metal. Judging by the expression on Williams’ face after the kick, he probably broke his foot. Later in the fight, a bird gets in the way of Williams’ line of sight, allowing Han to strike a blow that dazes Williams.

  7. JustSomeLameLady

    Erm. You know that Bruce Lee’s time was the height of the new school wuxia/Hong Kong action genre, right? That was the period in which China was espousing its philosophy (in wake of the Cultural Revolution) and using fighting films as an expression of the pride of Chinese people. It is in essence the Chinese version of blaxploitation, so of course Lee kicked everyone’s ass–especially the Japanese (remember, this is just bared thirty years after WWII). The films were made for a Chinese audience. They appeal to Chinese tastes of the time; using a modern gauge to evaluate the films is meaningless.

    I won’t pretend Lee’s films were the best ever, but like someone else pointed out, the tendencies in his movies are no different from Hollywood’s Mighty Whitey syndrome (which has been going strong for nigh on sixty years now) and proclivity for snatching up characters and racelifting them to “better suit the tastes of the majority.” Makes more sense to attack something like that instead of films that are forty years old.

  8. true about the anti-climatic stuff though, the endings to most of his movies sucked in my opinion

  9. oh yea, I am a Lee fan, but sure – those movies are a bit old-school. Definitely not the best pace for a fight movie by modern standards. Many movies till some late 60’s were like that. Even those considered “greatest”.
    Then again we know few old-school examples of a stretched movie giving it that special feel (Like the Good, the Bad and the Ugly)

  10. Brian Fire

    LOL!!! Bruce Lee’s movies are probably NOT for you my friend. The Karate KId…doesn’t even BELONG in the same sentence. I enjoyed the KArate Kid…but it isn’t ANY WHERE near as entertaining as a Bruce Lee film. HIS movies are ANYTHING BUT boring! His films are the best martial art films ever made… period and he was ahead of his time! His fights are FAR more dramatic…and shot better than ANY film! You are more than likely a YOUNGSTER who knows nothing about cinema. As far as Whites go…traditionally…they ALWAYS get to do damn near anything in an action film. So WHAT they get their ass kicked by bruce Lee…its a film….HIS FILM! HE IS THE STAR! Chuck Norris doesn’t get his slow butt kicked in HIS tired movies. He’s the star…and BORING to watch! You don’t seem to have a problem with them dominating the film market. Bigger than that…a guy who thinks he is invincible…always thinks that…till he meets someone who figures him out! Bruce’s movies are the stuff of LEGEND! he is THA MAN…WORLD WIDE…for a reason! Stick to WWF wrestling or Van Damm movies and leave good Martial Art moveis to TRUE fans!!!

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