|Burn in hell, Bruce Li. Or refund my $2.99 Blockbuster rental. Your choice.|
|"...and people who wear white after Labor Day have no kung-fu skills. Nyaah!"|
|Quickly followed by every Japanese bone and internal organ he could find|
|THIS is what Bill Paxton was saying "Game over!" about in Aliens|
|How? With his telephone repairman disguise. Really.|
There isn't a whole lot of acting in Fist of Fury, aside from Bruce Lee. Even Lee isn't all that great here (acting-wise); the most common trait his non-action scenes share is melodrama. I will admit that he played up the goofiness of his disguises pretty well. Still, Lee has the greatest martial arts moves, the best kung-fu noises, and some of the best facial expressions in the genre.
That approach is both the strength and weakness of Fist of Fury. Writer/director Wei Lo went against the grain by having Bruce Lee kick the ass of absolutely everyone in this movie, and that was glorious. Unfortunately, the biggest challenge Chen Zen faces comes from a white guy with a curly 'fro.
|He looks like a poodle with a bow tie|
|...and he would have ended the fight by dropping his drumsticks|
Overall, Fist of Fury is an impressive, but flawed martial arts picture. The amount of action scenes is impressive, and their scope is pretty much unparalleled (unless I've simply missed out on some truly bad-ass movies). I loved that his feats were only limited by how furious he was at any given time. Beating up a dojo because they insulted you? Easy. Killing everyone you encounter when you feel threatened? Even better. That awesomeness gets lost a bit, though, among some of the film's problems. First of all, the editing is pretty wretched; if it's not an action scene that Lee probably set up himself, the movie looks bad and can be difficult to follow. That's inept and annoying, but the action scenes are left intact, so it's not the end of the world. But the bad guys are awfully stupid in this story. Even if you ignore the ridiculous (and effective!) disguises Chen wears, there are still some unexplained concepts in play. For instance, Chen Zen is constantly underestimated by his opponents. When he first arrives at the dojo, that is understandable. Once he is public enemy number one? That just doesn't make sense. Perhaps even odder is the film's ending; while I agree that it makes sense (to a degree) within the plot, it seems like an odd choice for a story that was written by the director. Why involve the police at all? Why not simply keep it a revenge flick? Why did the bad guys kill Teacher? And why end in a freeze frame?
|Jump kicks are far less impressive when they aren't aimed|