Fist of Legend
starring Jet Li

Fist of Legend was released in 1994 and was a remake of the 1972, Bruce Lee classic Fist of Fury. (released as the Chinese Connection in the US)

Contrary to popular belief, it was not a remake of Bruce Lee's The Big Boss (which release in the U.S. as Fists of Fury)

It  was originally released in Hong Kong as Jing Wu Ying Xióng; which translates to "Hero of Jing Wu ".

It was part of the Hong Kong martial arts movie industry and starred martial arts legend Jet Li .

Fist of Legend was directed by Gordon Chan and features martial arts choreography by Yuen Woo-ping.

Who would later go on to choreograph the martial arts fight scenes in the Hollywood Sci-Fi action movie The Matrix.

The Wachowski Brothers (the creators of the Matrix) were originally inspired by this martial arts movie and the style of martial fighting is very similar in both films.

This martial arts movie has served to influence several other Jet Li movies.

The more realistic and less wire-driven fight choreography scenes in Kiss of the Dragon are considered a direct result of fan criticism to Corey Yuen 's choreography in Romeo Must Die. 

Many Jet Li fans preferred the martial arts fighting style seen in Fist-of-Legend.

Fist of Legend
Plot Summary

This martial arts movie follows the character Chen Zhen (portrayed by Jet Li). The character Chen Zhen is based on a Chinese folk hero.

It takes place in 1937 Shanghai, during the Second Sino-Japanese War as the city is occupied by Japanese forces.

Chen Zhen is set on a quest to bring the killers of his master, Huo Yuanjia , to justice.

Fist of Legend vs Chinese Connection - What separates the remake from the original?

First of all the remake has a much more favorable portrayal of the Japanese. In the remake, 

  • Chen is a student studying abroad in Japan, and the opening scene features Japanese students protesting the Japanese occupation of China.
  • When pro-war Japanese students raid Chen's classroom, Chen's classmates and instructor are quick to defend him.
  • Chen even has a Japanese girlfriend, whose uncle (Funakochi Fumio) sides with Chen against the corrupt generals heading the occupation.
  • Even the leader of the opposing Japanese clan expresses dismay and anger over the military leadership.

This movie goes out of it's way to make a point of separating the Japanese military and military leaders from Japan itself, by identifying the military leadership as the true aggressors and occupying force.

I have added a blog page for this movie, featuring why I rate this as one of my favorite martial arts movies, Click here to view it and add your own comments.

I am not the only one who has enjoyed this martial art movie, Below is a the original trailer from 1994.



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