The amazing world of martial arts is something that transcends martial arts themselves and reaches different spheres of our everyday lives. Martial arts have found their place in the arts, entertainment and many other elements of regular human activities, thus becoming a very important part of our lives. Now, in today’s article, we have decided to dig into the martial arts’ presence in the arts or, more specifically, the world of cinema.
In today’s article, we are going to see how martial arts came onto the big screens and how relevant these movies have been for the history of cinema. We are going to explore some of the best martial movies in the history of cinema and, hopefully, help you find something good to watch.
Enter the Dragon (1973)
Bruce Lee’s swan song is considered by many to be the best martial arts movie ever mane and we can, honestly, only agree. This movie is a true celebration of everything martial arts represent, but it’s more than that – it is aesthetically and artistically superior to other movies in this genre, and a movie with inherent quality that has to be honored in the best way possible.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
Ang Lee’s movie is much more than a simple martial arts movie – it’s an artistic epic about an ancient Chinese martial art that defies being categorized as a simple martial arts movie. The cast was truly amazing and Ang Lee’s superior directorial style turned this movie into such a memorable experience. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is more than a martial arts masterpiece, it is certainly one of the most beautiful movies of its decade.
Ip Man (2008)
This biopic about Bruce Lee’s master is a recent work that showed us a lot of the talents that Donnie Yen has as an actor and martial artist. Ip Man became a whole franchise and a lot of people compare it to Rocky in terms of the story of an underdog that works very hard to achieve fame. It might not be artistically superior to some other titles, but Ip Man is certainly worth a watch and is one of the more memorable titles in recent decades.
Fist of Fury (1972)
Seeing how martial arts movies are usually associated with Bruce Lee and how the late actor became sort of a synonym for this genre, it should not come as a surprise that we’re listing one of his movies again. The original Fist of Fury is a truly great and entertaining title that will capture your attention from start to finish. Bruce Lee is at the height of his abilities in this movie and we are absolutely certain in our decision to list it here as one of the best martial arts titles ever.
The Karate Kid (1984)
This children’s classic is much more than an 80s movie that defined a generation, it is one of the most memorable and best-known martial arts films ever. The story of a young boy that pushes himself and his limits to become the best fighter, while also learning self-defense, has spawned several sequels and a modern remake, but the original is undoubtedly the best. The Karate Kid has its fair share of cringy elements, but it has enough heart and soul to make up for every issue you might encounter during watching.
Kill Bill (2003)
Let us add a bit of Quentin Tarantino to the equation. Tarantino is undoubtedly one of the best directors of the modern age and while Kill Bill is, at best, a polarizing movie – some consider it a masterpiece, while others consider it a complete drag – it is certainly one of the most relevant and artistically unique martial arts movies ever made. Quentin Tarantino put a lot of heart and soul into this movie, a lot of his influences and moments that he loves, which is why we absolutely had to add this movie to our list.
The Way of the Dragon (1972)
Hello again, Mr. Bruce Lee! The Way of the Dragon is certainly another noteworthy title from the Bruce Lee canon and while it doesn’t really stick out in terms of martial arts or its artistic realization, it is notable for its humorous approach to action, which makes it somewhat unique within Bruce Lee’s major works. Also, The Way of the Dragon is the movie in which Bruce Lee fights against another martial arts legend – Chuck Norris. So, watch this movie and let the meme war begin.
House of Flying Daggers (2005)
This 2005 Chinese epic is a martial arts movie with a completely unique artistic approach to martial arts. Namely, this movie is choreographed so well that it looks more like a dance than a demonstration of some of the deadliest martial arts in existence. Based on Chinese folklore, this movie has so much more it can offer and we are quite happy that we’ve been able to see it and that we are, as a result, able to suggest it to you and put it on our list of the best martial arts movies in history.
And that’s it for today. We can conclude our list with these titles, hoping that we have made a good selection for you and that you’re going to find at least a couple of good movies to watch. These titles are, in our opinion, the best martial arts-themed movies you’ll find and they represent the wonderful world of these arts in the best way possible. This is why we have listed them and given you a short introduction to each of them.
We hope you’ll have fun watching these movies and that you’ll keep following us for more of the same. See you next time!