Enter the Dragon
Dir: Robert Clouse Scr: Michael Allin
Set Design: Chan King-sam
Cast: Bruce Lee, John Saxon, Jim Kelly,
Betty Chung, Anna Capri
1973 / Colour / D Beta / Mandarin & English /
Chi & Eng subtitles / 103 min
Arguably martial arts legend Bruce Lee’s best film, Enter the Dragon sees him playing a Shaolin monk who is instructed to infiltrate Mr. Han’s private island to bring the latter, a murderer and a drug lord, to justice. Interestingly, Lee casts Shek Kin, the most infamous villain in the history of Cantonese Cinema and himself a kung-fu master, to play Han, thus paying tribute not only to Shek, but also to Cantonese Cinema where his roots lie. Matching Lee’s wild style of martial arts which is a mixture or summation of all kung-fu styles, Chan King-sam (credited as Chin Sum) also designs the film’s various sets with an improbable mixture of elements east and west. The prime example is the banquet scene in which contrasting icons from the two cultures (birdcages, wall sculptures of dragons and phoenixes, sumo figures, lion costumes from traditional lion dance) are put together side by side to create a jarring yet heightened tension. The use of mirrors in the final combat may remind one of Orson Welles’s The Lady from Shanghai (1947), but the effect here is both urgent and hazardous. Fortune Star Media Limited. All rights reserved.
||Cinema, Hong Kong Film Archive
*Post-screening talk with Allan Tsui
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