A History Of Violence: Before Bruce Lee, a different martial artist put kung fu on the movie map
With A History Of Violence, Tom Breihan picks the most important action movie of every year, starting with the genre’s birth and moving right up to whatever Vin Diesel’s doing this very minute.
The Chinese Boxer (1970)
Martial-arts movie tropes don’t get better, or more iconic, than this: A lone unarmed master, driven by rage and revenge, walks into a rival discipline’s dojo and demands to fight the master. It doesn’t happen. Instead, he finds himself surrounded by enemies, and he takes all of them out, one by one. Bruce Lee did that scene more famously and arguably better than anyone else in the 1972 movie best known to Americans as The Chinese Connection. (In Hong Kong, it’s Fist Of Fury.) But that trope can still be plenty exciting now; witness Donnie Yen in Ip Man.
The first time the world saw a scene …