Reviewed by: Gaijin84
Summary: The first Brucesploitation film?
Bruce Lee: A Dragon Story is thought to be the first entry in the extraordinary genre of what are known as "Brucesploitation" films. Released in 1974, just a year after Lee's death, A Dragon Story boils down to a quick and dirty biopic of Bruce and Betty Ting Pei. The first 15 minutes of the film blast through Bruce's life in America, starting out with him winning a martial arts tournament, contracted to play Kato in the Green Hornet series, fighting off sword-wielding Japanese thugs and bearing children in what seems to be the span of 2 days. Emboldened by his success, he sets off for Hong Kong where the bulk of this movie is set. There his services are battled over by directors and producers as a backdrop to his growing affair with Betty Ting Pei (whose character has almost become the lead by the finale). The movie ends with a mentally and physically exhausted Bruce dying in Ting Pei's apartment after fighting off some thugs who were harassing her.
Reviewer Score: 2
Brucesploitation films are a strange contradiction. You know they are undoubtedly going to be terrible, but for some reason you're drawn to see how shameful people can be to exploit a legendary figure, even after their death. Bruce Lee: A Dragon Story does not leave out any sensationalistic parts of Bruce Lee's life. It takes every rumor or theory that was circulating at the time and presents it as the truth, especially regarding the relationship between Lee and Ting Pei. Drugs, alcohol, gambling and adultery do a lot to enhance a plot, and the director throws it all in. The acting is horrendous, the fights amateur at best and the editing laughable. Throw in the fact that all the sound as well as the dubbed voices were added post filming and you have a truly horrific movie. Classically bad in almost every way, but would you expect anything else?