The unique hand-to-hand combat in martial arts films is unmatched by any other subgenre. Action movies have frequently featured martial arts as a fighting mode for many years. The following 15 martial arts films were listed in an online forum as the best of all time. Do you agree?
1. The Legend of the Drunken Master (1994)
Arguably his best work, it's one of Jackie Chan's films featuring martial arts only. This film about family drama, stealing priceless artifacts, and drunken martial arts contains some of the best action scenes ever. Regardless of how they typically feel about martial arts, every action movie fan should see it. It also serves as a swansong for his Hong Kong era.
2. Enter The Dragon (1973)
Bruce Lee was already headed for stardom, but this movie cemented his iconic reputation, making his untimely death unfortunate. With Lee being charismatic as an actor and strong and completely convincing as a fighter, the movie's plot—an extravagant martial arts competition on a foreign island—is filled with spectacular action.
3. Kung Fu Hustle (2004)
This 1940s Chinese cartoonish kung fu classic opens with a jumble of the evil Axe Gang destroying the nearby provinces until being overpowered by a talented kung fu pair who rule over the underdeveloped Pig Sty Alley. The gang enlists Sing, an eager-to-please lockpicker, to free The Beast, the best fighter in the world, from a mental institution and defeat the couple.
4. The Flying Guillotine (1976)
A blind assassin seeking retribution for the killing of two of his nasty cronies must be fought off by a one-armed boxer. The killer dispatches three further goons to take down the still-extremely-aggressive lefty, but he traps them with booby traps. The blind assassin then begins swinging his unique weapon, the Flying Guillotine, a spike-brimmed hat designed to behead its bearer, using only his hearing. However, the one-armed boxer's cunning wins out.
5. Ip Man (2008)
Ip Man strives to fight rarely because he wants to be a decent father and husband in addition to enjoying a comfortable life with his wife and child in the community, where he is widely considered the best fighter. But he finds inspiration when the Japanese invade China, demolish his town, and murder two comrades. He is presented as a general who enjoys martial arts and easily whoops ten men at a time. They offer him bags of rice so that he may feed his family, who are starving, but the proud man declines. He “didn't come for rice.” He came for revenge.
6. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
One of the most well-known martial arts films ever made. It's more imaginative than typical martial arts films directed by Ang Lee. It features a group of individuals searching for a legendary sword with superhuman fighting skills. It gives the movie a distinctive flavor regarding the plot and the memorable action sequences. It's the kind of movie that appeals to a broad audience and doesn't require you to be a fan of martial arts to enjoy it.
7. Iron Monkey (1993)
While being pursued by Wong Kei-Ying, a vigilante tries to assist the corrupt town's residents. The situation changes when the two unite to defeat Shaolin's traitor, Hin-hung. The movie didn't become popular in the United States after its release in 1993; however, Quentin Tarantino supported it, and for good reason—the action scenes are incredible.
8. Fist of Legend (1994)
The 1937 Shanghai International Settlement is the backdrop for this remake of Bruce Lee's Fist of Fury. It follows Chen as he looks into the killing of his mentor Huo Yuanjia at the hands of the Imperial Japanese occupation forces. Li does a far better job of bringing Chen Zhen to life than Lee. Li is unpredictable, unlike the magnetic rage Lee exuded, even amid a battle representing the long history of racial hostility between the Chinese and the Japanese.
9. Hero (2002)
A breathtakingly gorgeous film that covers an epic tale in less than two hours, with the main character being a lone warrior entrusted with killing three infamous assassins before they can attack China's monarch. It includes some of the best sword battles I've seen on screen in a while, which it brilliantly incorporates into its martial arts action scenes, in addition to being a fantastic-looking and sounding film.
10. The Raid (2011)
Few action films can rival The Raid for being as blunt. In this Indonesian movie, a group of S.W.A.T. team members who are well-trained but outnumbered are trapped in a tall structure under the control of a crime boss who has set a bounty on their heads. Following this preamble, The Raid becomes a survival struggle as the police must fight out of the structure.
11. Kill Bill Vol. 1 (2003)
Code-named The Bride, a pregnant assassin, is viciously attacked by her former boss, Bill, and left in a coma for four years. When she finally awakens, she decides to exact revenge on him and his friends. Because so many other movies influenced him, Tarantino creates something that feels original, thrilling, and unmatched; it is an action-packed martial arts homage through and through.
12. Police Story (1985)
Kevin, a police officer in Hong Kong, captures a known drug boss by himself. However, he must clear his identity before it's too late after being falsely accused of killing a second police officer. Chan, who is as skilled a stuntman as they come, directs with a focus on the dramatic nuances because what is captured on camera genuinely occurs.
13. The Way of the Dragon (1972)
The martial artist Tang decides to assist his relatives, who were forced to sell their restaurant by a gang. The syndicate then sends a well-known martial artist to fight Tang. Despite its poor dubbing, Bruce Lee's only complete directorial film is worth seeing because of the reverent vistas of Rome and the dazzling fight choreography.
14. Kung Fu Panda (2008)
After being chosen as the Dragon Warrior, Kung Fu aficionado Po the Panda works with the Furious Five to defeat the evil forces threatening the Valley of Peace. Practically anything is imaginable with this film's entry into mainstream animation.
Amaka Chukwuma is a finance and lifestyle writer with a real knack for the craft. She's been at it for over four years, making her mark on places like FinanceBuzz and The Buttonwood Tree, not to mention some cool collaborations with various brands. Her. Her work with Wealth of Geeks has been widely appreciated, with syndication across multiple platforms and publications. Amaka's got a BA in Linguistics. When she's taking a break from her writing adventures, you'll probably find her digging into some delicious pies or exploring the food scene. Want to see what she's up to or get a taste of her work? Hit her up on LinkedIn and Twitter.