A mediocre Bruce clone film saved by the amazing Dana Lei
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 10/15/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Like the vast majority of Bruceploitation films, 1978's Image of Bruce Lee (with the exception of one throwaway line) has absolutely nothing at all to do with Bruce Lee. This film stars Bruce Li, the best known of the Bruce Lee clones of the 70s, and it's quite unlike any other Bruce Li film I have seen up to this point. Bruce and his sidekick "Moustache" (who looks for all the world like Tony Orlando to me, meaning I couldn't take him the least bit seriously) are detectives - to be more specific, they are probably the worst detectives in Hong Kong. These guys couldn't sneak up on a dead log in the middle of a hurricane, which means they end up fighting all the time. The movie opens with some guy threatening to jump off a building (the end result of which is quite comical in a sadistic sort of way); there is something about jewelry smuggling mentioned here and there, but the only real purpose the scene seems to serve is to make Bruce Li dress up in a hideous yellow jumpsuit like that worn by Bruce Lee in Game of Death. The real crime here is counterfeiting, and the men behind it are Han Ying Kit (whom martial arts fans will easily recognize as the The Big Boss from Bruce Lee's Fist of Fury aka The Big Boss) and his buff son Stephen. Bolo Yeung, another familiar face to Bruce Lee fans, plays Kimura, a Japanese criminal who brings his own agenda to his dealings with the counterfeiters. This film is by and large pretty boring, with some of the most uninspired fight scenes I've ever seen (at least until the final showdowns); I couldn't tell if the guys were fighting or dancing half the time.Image of Bruce Lee has an ace up its sleeve, though, in the form of Dana Lei. She is the most gorgeous Asian lady I've ever seen in my life. She, much to my surprise, also does a couple of completely nude scenes in this movie, thereby making up for a lot of the inane plot points and boring stretches of non-action. This movie is all about Dana Lei as far as I'm concerned; beautiful, smart, much more than meets the eye, and she can fight too. What a woman! She even supplies the big twist that helps get Image of Bruce Lee over the hump. Of course, it is up to Bruce Li to supply the climactic action sequence at the end, and we finally get some decent fighting to enjoy. There's a silly little comedic epilogue-type ending, but Dana Lei's performance plus the memorable final kung fu conflict earns an otherwise mediocre film four stars in my book."
Pretty Entertaining Bruceploitation
J. Pinkerton Snoopington | Toronto, Ontario, Canada | 01/04/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
""The Image of Bruce Lee," contrary to what most cut-rate DVD companies will try to make you think, does not star Bruce Lee. Instead, it stars his most famous imitator, Bruce Li, who is an adequate martial artist but not a very riveting actor in the way that Lee was. This movie is a bit better than average because of the sheer amount of fight scenes. There's action everywhere, including a nifty scene where Li takes on an entire gym of opponents. There's also a memorably strange opening scene in which Li, dressed in "Game of Death" tracksuit, tries to save a suicidal man, as well as leading lady Dana (what she lacks in acting ability, she makes up for in nudity).
The DVD from Front Row Entertainment is, like most Bruceploitation movies on DVD, in full frame pan-and-scan. The image, if not too scratchy, is fuzzy with faded colours. The dubbed sound is what you'd expect. As a special feature, some information about kung fu in popular culture (movies, television) is included, set to the backdrop of the concluding scene of "Blind Fist of Bruce." A biography about Bruce Li is advertised, but when clicked on, it merely switches to the kung fu info."
Confusing plot but redeemed with some great martial arts seq
Sebastian Sanjurjo | Miami FL | 01/31/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)
"The infamous Bruce Li stars in this Bruceploitation mess as an undercover cop searching for international forgers. Li begins to investigate in bars, hotels etc. the issue with this movie is not the story itself it's how it was developed. It's just to damn confusing and boring, and like most of these B- Kung fu movies they tend to have incoherency and randomness. such as the beginning which made very little sense; it involves a man attempting suicide when out of nowhere Li comes into save him like Spiderman (seriously) he climbs up the wall wearing the infamous yellow track suit from Game Of Death.
Besides this the movie does offer some good moments which are usually the fight scenes. One awesome fight scene involves Li and a whole karate school; it is actually decent and well choreographed. The director even manages to put some nice angles to improve the fights. the movie also has some reoccurring actors famous for appearing in other real Bruce Lee classics. Such as Yin- Chieh Han who played the main villain in the big boss (AKA: Fists of Fury) and Bolo Yeung from Enter the Dragon.
As for the picture quality, this and many other Kung fu films come in poor picture and sound quality. This DVD is average; it comes in Full screen 1:33:1 and stereo sound.
MY PERSONAL RATING: 2 OUT OF 5