When you hear the name Bruce Lee, it automatically makes you think of some of the best kung fu movies from the 1970s. ‘70s kung fu movies are some of the most badass martial arts films of all time due to their fearless actors and fighters. The 1970s saw a backlash against wuxia-style martial arts films, which contain elements of fantasy and swordplay. The re-emergence of kung fu cinema brought gritty realism back to the silver screen. Even those less familiar with this particular era of film history will certainly remember some of Lee's most iconic films, such as Return of the Dragon.
What are the greatest ‘70s kung fu films? Robert Clouse, the famed American director of martial arts films, has several films on this list, including Bruce Lee’s only English-speaking starring role in Enter the Dragon. You will also find numerous films directed by - or starring - Sammo Hung, the Hong Kong new wave titan.
If you’re a fan of hip-hop pioneers, The Wu-Tang Clan, you might recognize The 36th Chamber of Shaolin as a major cultural influence on the group. This list of the top ‘70s kung fu movies has something for everyone, from Australian new wave flicks, like The Man from Hong Kong, to awesome, obscure pictures like Dance of the Drunk Mantis.
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