Chinese Kung Fu Movie Nationalism

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

Watched the movie “Ip Man 2” Buy at amazon 《葉問2:宗師傳奇》 today.

It's not as good as the first one “Ip Man” Buy at amazon (2008, Donnie Yen) 《葉問》

In general, these belong to a class of chinese kung fu movies that's foolishly nationalist. The setting is usually in the 1940s historical background where China is weak and is occupied by Japan and Western nations. Typically, the “bad guys” are foreigners.

In the movies, whitemen boxers would laugh at “chinese boxing”, finding it to be some stupid dance moves. In the case of Japanese, Japanese would constantly challenge Chinese because they believe that Chinese martial arts is a inferior. Then, there comes a match, where, the foreigner would resort to all sort of unfair tactics. Of course, in the end, the Chinese kung fu master wins (or that his sons or student wins as a revenge for the murder of his master).

(by the way, Japanese karate came from China)

Because i love kung fu and grew up in Taiwan, i've watched almost all these films in my life since about 1980. Here's a list of some.

Fist of Fury (1972, Bruce Lee) 《精武门》

“Fist of Fury” Buy at amazon

Fist of Legend (1994; Jet Li) 《精武英雄》

“Fist Legend” Buy at amazon

Fearless 《霍元甲》 (2006, Jet Li)

“Jet Li - Fearless Fight Scene”. Broad sword fight.

“Fearless” Buy at amazon

Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen 《精武风云-陈真》 (2010; Donnie Yen)

“Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen” Buy at amazon

The Grandmaster 一代宗師