Bruce Lee - The Big Boss/Fist of Fury
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The Big Boss (1971) Chein (Lee) moves with his cousins to work at an ice factory after promising not to be involved with fighting. When members of his family begin disappearing after meeting with the management, he breaks his vow and takes on the Big Boss. Fist of Fury (1972) Bruce Lee plays a martial arts student who returns to his former school to find that his beloved teacher has been murdered. Set in Shanghai in the 1930s, the Japanese are in control, and it is one of their Bushido schools that is responsible.
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On the DVD for "The Big Boss/Fist of Fury," the movies are unchanged from previous releases and all of the flaws and edits that you've come to expect in both films are still there. One of the things that was brought to light during this viewing of "The Big Boss" is that the voices of two characters swap around the 26:30 mark and then swap back a moment later. While the price is relatively affordable, the DVD is also unnecessary especially if you already have the films. If you own The Bruce Lee Ultimate Collection, then it may be worth picking up these two DVDs to save shelf space and finally have the opportunity to get rid of the downright terrible "Game of Death II."
Some mini reviews practically wrote themselves after purchasing The Bruce Lee Ultimate Collection, but were polished up for these releases. Here's a look at the "The Big Boss" review:
"The 70s cheese that's present in every Bruce Lee film seems overexposed in the film that would eventually lead to him becoming a martial arts action star. 'The Big Boss' is very similar to 'Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky' in tone, but was slaughtered by the MPAA. The over the top violence is only held back by the heavy amount of cuts in the film. Despite being Lee's bloodiest film, it's extremely edited compared to what was shown in theaters in '71. The ability to jump ten feet in the air at a moment's notice reaches its peak when Cheng (Lee) jumps over a fence, then reaches into a paper bag that he's carrying and eats a potato chip. A man leaves a cartoonish outline of his body in a wooden wall after being kicked through it and Cheng shoves his bloodied fingertips into the abdomen of Hsiao Mi (Han Ying-chieh) during the film's finale. If you're going to go for outrageous gore, then it needs to be unedited. Chiao Mei (Maria Yi) is totally useless and thinks crying is the solution to everything. 'The Big Boss' is entertaining, but would be even better if the seas parted and we got our hands on that 115-minute version of the film."
And the "Fist of Fury" review:
"If 'Enter the Dragon' is considered not only Bruce Lee's most successful film, but his most well-received then 'Fist of Fury' should qualify as a very close second. Bruce Lee manages to show a little versatility when it comes to his acting this time around as he's shown dressed up as an old man and as a nerdy telephone worker each with its own quirks and characteristics that Lee does a great job of portraying. The Japanese dojo sequence at the beginning of the film is legendary. While Chen Zhen (Lee) mourns his master at first, he becomes more and more violent as the film progresses. Chen Zhen kills so many people, is massively angry, and is apparently a master of disguise. The film caps it off with Chen Zhen's fight with the seemingly unstoppable Russian, Petrov. Take a minute to soak in the ending. It's so simple and yet Lee does this extraordinary job of packing in as much emotion as he can in the final 15 seconds of the film."