peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2024 04 07 TheBigBoss

The Big Boss (1971)

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Bruce Lee's first major movie in a lead role. All the details and more at Wikipedia. Briefly he leaves Hebei to go work at an ice factory in Thailand and soon enough the local Big Boss is disappearing his coworkers (some of them cousins?) after they discover opiates in the ice. (I read recently that the Afghan Taliban has figured out that there's more money in ice than opiates.) All the ladies make distracting eyes at him and he wakes up in a henhouse. But the ladies do help him out, which is more than he gets from most of his male cohort. His mum sent him along with an amulet to keep him from fighting but of course it doesn't last long. On the other hand not a lot happens for most of the movie.

The scenery is occasionally gorgeous and some of the cinematography is decent. The editing is clunky and there are distracting continuity issues. It's somewhat fun on its own terms but lacks the exotic mythos that the more recent Kung Fu movies go in for; there's nothing to think about here. The titles and credits, the negative space portraits owe something to Sergio Leone.