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Bruce Lee Fights Back From The Grave (1976)
America Bangmungaeg
Bruce Lee slår tillbaka
The Stranger

Nomination Year: 2010
SYNOPSIS:  Bruce Lee Does Not Appear In This Film, although Bruce Lea does. Nobody actually fights back from the grave, though. That confused us for a bit before we realized that the title was an outright lie (as opposed to the usual subtle lie).

Some of the "high" points include:

Bruce Lea makes these weird noises when he fights. "Did Pac-man just die in the next room?" type noises. Although I blame that on the over-enthusiastic Foley artists. When Bruce (and the camera) are in one room, looking out through a sliding glass door, across a balcony, down at a woman walking on the far side of a swimming pool, and we can hear her shoes CLIP CLOP CLIP CLOPping clear as day ... that's too much Foley. Too much Foley in the fight scenes, too much Foley in the chase scenes, and I'm sure if we'd had any love scenes -- I'm sorry, my brain just shut off.

Wong (Bruce) arrives in America, but when he visits the dojo belonging to a friend, he discovers that the friend has just recently been killed by (apparently) The Village People. Seriously, he is told that his buddy was last seen alive in the company of "a Japanese, a White, a Black, a Mexican, and a Cowboy."

So he goes off in search of these men, and gets picked up by a waitress. This waitress is a lot like Daphne from Scooby-Doo, always getting into trouble, being beaten up, and so on. At one point, Wong has to nurse her back to health from the brink of death via a loving acupuncture sequence. He then borrows her car. It gets stolen. A parade randomly passes through. Finally (finally!) he has his showdown with The Village People.

The back cover reads "He eventually finds the bad guys behind it all, and they live to regret it." This is another blatant lie. All the bad guys behind it die pretty much right after he finds them. Nobody regrets anything. Except me, for watching the movie. And Amy, for watching it with me.

Smithee Award Winner!MegaMetaSmithee Award Winner! Worst Cover Copy

Not the Wong cover.
On the front cover is a picture of ... well, if it's our guy, let's just say that he's not on the cover in any location where he is in the film. Now ... on to the back cover. It reads, in its entirety: "A lightning bolt striking the grave of Bruce Lee, bringing him back for action. Bruce Lee, plays a kung fu instructor who starts a quest to avenge a friend's death, and on the way gets romantically involved with a girl that has similar problems. He eventually finds the bad guys behind it all, and they live to regret it."

So, apart from the bad grammar, we have a few other minor quibbles. The actor is Bruce Lea, not Bruce Lee. Maybe they meant the character? Nope, the character is named Wong something. He's not a kung fu instructor. Never was. He does eventually find the bad guys behind it all, but nobody lives to regret anything. Except Wong. And us.

Smithee Award Winner! "Cutting Butter With A Chainsaw"

Just had to be sure?
The Cowboy fires off camera ... a lot. He accidentally shoots his buddy ... a lot. I wonder why he didn't think to change his aim after firing the first shot....

Actors/Directors of Note
Actor Claim to Fame
Bruce Lea given name is Jun Chong, but you can probably guess who he looks like 
Deborah Dutch  
Jang Lee Hwang former taekwondo instructor of the Korean Army 
Shô Kosugi One of the most famous martial artists on film; Hosts his own "Ninja Theater" series of movies 
Director Claim to Fame
Doo-yong Lee also wrote Bruce Lee Fights Back From The Grave 

Kevin Hogan

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© 2011-2014 Bryan D. Cassidy, Greg Pearson, Matthew Quirk, and Kevin Hogan. All Rights Reserved.