Thursday, September 13, 2018
Enter the Dragon (1973)
Enter the Dragon was Bruce Lee at his zenith, his breakthrough into international pop culture and cinema. Alas he died not long after completing the film so was never able to capitalise on the buzz it created - as indeed it did. The kung-fu craze in the 70s and beyond was largely due to this film.
Enter the Dragon took martial arts films out of their traditional Chinese mindset (though it is still set largely in Hong Kong) and added Western action elements. The result is fantastic, and also pretty epic in it's 70s-ness.
Bruce Lee is hired by British intelligence official Braithwaite (Geoffrey Weeks) to join a martial arts tournament by Han (Shih Ken) to gain intelligence on Han's suspected drug smuggling and other criminal activities. Joining Lee in this tournament are gambler Roper (John Saxon) and Williams (Jim Kelly) who both have different reasons for being there but get drawn into the game between Lee and Han. Of course it all ends in an epic fight.
The storyline isn't much to get excited about (though if you like i did once review the novelisation) but the action is intense, mixed with cool early 70s funky style. It also has a final showdown in a hall of mirrors.