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Tadhg's Favorite Martial Arts Movies

Discussion in 'Movie' started by Tadhg Gaelach, Jun 11, 2016.

  1. Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    A selection of martial arts movies chosen for their quality, originality, and authentic genre characteristics. The first film is the 36th Chamber of Shaolin from 1978 and is an all time favorite with Kung Fu film fans. It's very well made and conveys the philosophy of Buddhism and Kung Fu very well.

    (The version I originally posted has been taken down from Youtube, but you can watch it here in 12 parts)


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMxp4ZFvD00&index=1&list=PLC5E6194F75B1524C



    Playlist:

    36 chamber of shaolin
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2016
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  2. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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  3. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    Patriotism is a key theme in Chinese martial arts movies, with a great many of them set during the Manchu invasion of China in 1618. The Manchus were of Mongol decent and they were regarded as foreign savages by the Han Chinese, who remained loyal to the Ming dynasty. The Shaolin Temple was a center of Nationalist resistance, where young men went to learn martial arts so as to fight the Manchu invader. In 1647 the Manchus burned down the Shaolin Temple and massacred hundreds of Buddhist monks. However, the temple was rebuilt and is today designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It remains a center of religious and martial arts practice. This film from 1976, the Eighteen Bronzemen, is an excellent example of this patriotic genre.



    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sf2ST17s1iA
     
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  4. Myview

    Myview Member Political Irish

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    Do you do martial arts yourself sir? I wonder if the enjoyment of the movies has any bearing on taking up the skills yourself?

    I see an absence of Bruce Lee in your film choices too, is that deliberate, do you consider his movies too comercialised?
     
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    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    Yes, I've studied martial arts since I was a teenager. I think having practiced some of these techniques does add greatly to the enjoyment of the movies - but I'm trying to select films that stand up as films and not just a series of fights. I do intend to post one Bruce Lee movie, but I'm putting up the more classical movies first. But, I also do believe that his movies were destructive in that they brought a Hollywood attitude into this genre, where it didn't belong. That said, he was certainly a highly original talent and the chances are that I would never have been exposed to martial arts without the enormous influence he has had in the West.
     
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  6. rightthented

    rightthented Member Political Irish

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    What martial arts do you perform Tadhg? Do you think martial arts should be used as a defence or attack skill?

    Fair play for kepping it up since you were a teenager, do you teach ?

    Most importantly is the wax on wax off training method effective!
     
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    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    I don't teach. I started with Wado Ryu Karate and then changed to Five Ancestors Kung Fu when I was in college. I've never had to use it in a fight as I'm six one tall and a 100 Kg, so I don't get picked on. Five Ancestors was first founded as a simplified version of Shaolin Kung Fu that could be taught to soldiers in a relatively short time, so it is good for both attack and defense. I think the most important part of it is the training of the mind and the spirit. It can be regarded as an antidote to the consumer culture we live in now, where everything is about instant gratification, impulse decisions and a shallow understanding of the world.
     
  8. Blokey

    Blokey Member Political Irish

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    I've been training since 1991 because I got suckered in by Van Damme movies when I was a kid and believed that the way they whup ass on screen can be transferred into a street situation. Well, nope, it doesn't work like that. Watch any supposed master having a real fight and watch it turn to shit within seconds. The only guy who had it around about right was Bruce Lee (going for the primary targets, such as finger jabbing eyes and striking the groin), but even Lee drilled so much unnecessary crap that would have gotten his ass handed to him in a real fight.

    People say, 'Oh Gracie jiu jitsu is the best', but while you're choking someone out on the floor, his friends are stomping all over your skull. While you're trading punches with one guy, his pals are attacking you from every angle, and you're fucked. I mean, look at any MMA fight (with rules), and look at how long they are drawn out for. Would you honestly want to be trading punches, kicks, or grappling for 10 minutes before a knockout? And within that time his pals are on you like a pack of wolves. Nope, you want something that can end a fight instantly, and you to come off as unharmed as possible.

    From 25 years of training, I realized that only two moves are effective in ending a fight instantly: sneakily finger jabbing the eye and then kicking in the balls. If you take an attackers sight, it doesn't matter how hard he can punch, he can't hit what he can't see. Also, if you can keep your distance from your attacker, then your brain has more reaction time for any move he tries to land. Why? If he is further away he will always telegraph his intentions, whereas up close his moves become non-telegraphic thus very difficult to evade or counter.

    Forget all of that wing chun trapping hands crap, and brazilian jiu jitsu, etc, etc. Just learn to master those two moves and you're an instant martial arts expert. Just don't use those moves unless someone is really intent on knocking your block off because blinding someone without valid reason is morally wrong.
     
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  9. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    I wouldn't say you are wrong there, but you have to remember that martial arts are not just about street fighting - if they were, they wouldn't be called arts. Buddhism adopted martial arts not for fighting, but as a way to give monks the physical and mental disciple and strength to be able to meditate for long periods. And apart from that, there is the aesthetic element. The reason I transferred from Karate to Kung Fu is that Karate is generally taught here by Westerners, who don't really understand the philosophy. They are just teaching moves - without the spiritual content of those moves. Chinese martial arts are generally better taught here as there are more native Chinese teachers available.
     
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  10. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

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    Here's your Brexit Bruce Lee movie - The Way of the Dragon. This movie is very watchable if only for the groovy style of Rome in the early 1970s. It concludes with the famous fight with Chuck Norris filmed illegally in the Coliseum. The film also conveys the central theme of Lee's films, and perhaps life in general, which was a Chinese person's encounter with Western culture. It's an encounter that is filled with anger and resentment over past colonial wrongs but also with fascination. Lee popularized Eastern martial arts in the West, but he also bought much that was Western to Eastern martial arts. You will particularly notice that he plays a sort of Western superman rather than the traditional Kung Fu master. Fights are short and brutal, with very little of the loving enjoyment that traditional Kung Fu films took in elaborate choreography and stylistic tropes from the Peking Opera and other traditional forms of Chinese theatre. More emphasis is put on portraying a realistic psychology of the main character, as is usual in Western movies.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rg9776y6mhA
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2016
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    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    This weekend's movie choice is the Seven Grandmasters. It is an exceptionally well made martial arts film that presents the ideal Kung Fu master. He is wise and humble, dedicated to the honour and welfare of his people, and willing to endure any danger and hardship for the sake of honour. He is a firm and loving father to his family, his students and to his community. He is contrasted to others who have mastered the physical techniques of Kung Fu, but not its spiritual meaning. And, finally, and perhaps most importantly, the true master passes on his learning and wisdom to the next generation. The film gives us lovely views of the Chinese countryside and has an unusually complex, well balanced, and enjoyable story line, along with magnificent Kung Fu choreography.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBc3YtO5vIU
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2016
  12. The Master

    The Master New Member Political Irish

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    Chinese martial arts history is full of challenge matches. However, one stands up well above all the others and can be verified because it was chronicled in the Cantonese newspapers and is still widely discussed in TCMA circles.

    In Canton City at the beginning of the 20th Century, a wooden stage was erected by Wong Yan Lam and an open challenge was made. Unlike other challenges, which were limited to a set time period or set number of challenges, this one was open. In fact, it ended up lasting weeks.

    Wong Yan Lam defeated 150 challengers without a single loss. Many local fighters lost in matters of SECONDS. It remains the largest and most impressive challenge in TCMA.

    Wong yan Lam was a master of Lion's Roar.
     
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  13. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

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    This weekend, let's have a bonus Kung Fu movie. I can't find any information on this film, except that it is made in the People's Republic of China mainland. All the other Kung Fu movies I've posted have been from Hong Kong. You'll notice that the style is quite different, with the acting and the Kung Fu choreography being much more realistic. It's also later - from 1989. It's a patriotic movie, but, unusually, the evil imperialists are not Manchus or Japanese, but Russian. In keeping with Communist ideology, the heroes are proletarians rather than monks or the landed classes, as is more usual for Hong Kong movies. In this film, it falls on a small family theater troop to defend the honour of China from foreign challenge.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5tSzvqO6LA
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2016
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    Tadhg Gaelach

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    This film is unusual in that its main protagonist is female. This is a classic tale of revenge, filmed with very high production values and a tightly written script which keeps the tension going from beginning to end.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xT4bHQJM_M8
     
  15. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

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    It's been a really terrible few days, with yet another Islamist mass murder in France and now soldiers being butchered on the streets of Turkey by Islamist rats. Today, Europe is under threat like no time before since the Mohammaden invasions which saw our beautiful Constantinople fall to the Turk. We need to organise and train ourselves to fight the enemy within and without. The enemy within has always been the worst - we could always have beaten the alien invader, except that we were always betrayed by the greed and cowardice of our so called leaders. That being the case, watching patriotic films like this can help us to form the correct mentality for the task that lies ahead of us. And, by the way, we could certainly learn a lesson from the Chinese when it comes to dealing with Islamists. The film stars Jimmy Wang Yu, who was the top Hong Kong Kung Fu star until Bruce Lee came along and paved the way for Lee's style of movie.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qv_TPQqpCPs
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016
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    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016
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    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    The Kung Fu comedy is a huge genre, and its undisputed King is Jackie Chan. He started out in Peking Opera (which is very acrobatic), but was picked up by Hong Hong movie business, where he rapidly became a star. This is the movie that made his reputation, and remains a favorite with Kung Fu film fans to this day. It's called The Drunken Master and benefits greatly from having the coolest Kung Fu baddie of all time - Hwang Jang Lee.

     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2017
  18. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    Following the success of the Drunken Master, Jackie Chan was again teamed up with the drunken master Yuen Siu Tien and with supervillain Hwang Jang Lee for this Kung Fu comedy classic. This version is in Chinese and has the original soundtrack, but you can find it on You Tube dubbed into English if you don't like reading subtitles. If at the end of this film you think they did are really good make up job on Jackie Chan's broken teeth, it's because Chan forgot a bit of the choreography and Hwang Jang Lee kicked him in the face and really knocked out his front tooth. Well, as the great 19th century Shakespearean actor, Edmund Kean, said on his deadbed - Dying is easy, comedy is hard.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jq-o2xI3YMY&list=PLFA58240B153FDD1A


    Playlist

    Snake in the eagle's shadow
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2016
  19. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    On the topic of the Drunken Master, this is a really cracking scene from a rather average movie called Dance of the Drunken Mantis. In this scene the Drunken Master, Yuen Siu Tien, takes on the villainous Hwang Jang Lee, who is wearing his favourite "Silver Fox" makeup.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4dp1au1Zw5c
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2016
  20. OP
    Tadhg Gaelach

    Tadhg Gaelach Legend Political Irish Donator

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    Here's a nice tribute to Hwang Jang Lee, who I would regard as the best martial artist in all of the Kung Fu movies - including Bruce Lee. He made over 40 movies, but was usually typecast as a villain. I think this was largely due to the fact that he is Korean, and the Hong Kong film industry always needs a Chinese hero. Well, that's understandable. It also has to be said that he has the right looks for a villain and clearly relished those parts. Today, at 72, he is still extremely fit and trains the South Korean national Taekwondo team. The other thing that good about him is that he never used special effects - that speed and flexibility is real. Today's so called Kung Fu movies have been utterly littered with special effects, to the point that the martial arts have merely become an excuse for more special effects. So much so, that many of the Hong Kong movies are now casting actors with no knowledge of martial arts at all. They use special effects and doubles to make them look good. Well, needless to say, I won't be including any of that rubbish on this thread. Let's leave that to the sheeple - and enjoy the real thing.


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EUvnSdvFiAA
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2016