The Underrated Martial Arts Epic Heating Up On Netflix

Philip Wan-lung Ng plays Bruce Lee, teaching martial arts in the United States in the 1960s. He gets on the wrong side of Wong Jack-man (Xia Yu) for teaching kung fu to white Americans, and the two prepare for an epic clash. Meanwhile, one of Lee’s students, Steve McKee (Billy Magnussen), falls for a Chinese woman who falls into some trouble with gangsters. As Lee prepares for his big fight, McKee must use what he’s learned from the martial arts master to save the woman he loves. 

While the Bruce Lee/Wong Jack-man fight actually happened, Steve McKee is a completely fabricated character. His part of the movie is false, but it’s still a worthwhile watch for anyone hoping to gain further insight into the legacy of Bruce Lee. You can even supplement your viewing with one of the myriad of books written about the infamous fight, such as “Showdown in Oakland: The Story Behind the Wong Jack-Man — Bruce Lee Fight,” written by Rick Wing.

Several critics enjoyed the movie for what it was. That includes TheWrap’s Robert Abele, who wrote, “It proves that zeroing in on a small but significant part of a famous person’s story, and how it reflects on their life at large, can often make for a sturdier entertainment than the usual long-skim approach to the biopic.” It’s a must-watch for anyone who’s a fan of Lee’s work, and that’s a big reason why it was able to break into Netflix’s Top 10 movies.


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