Fu Fighters

By Smith, Stephen | New Statesman (1996), June 4, 2001 | Go to article overview

Fu Fighters


Smith, Stephen, New Statesman (1996)


STEPHEN SMITH gets a kick out of a kung fu video retrospective

The life of a kung fu monk is a demanding one, as those of us who have lived it know to our cost. That's right, gentle reader, I once trod the unforgiving shingle of the path to enlightenment. I strove for the ineffable oneness that comes through meditation, and through being able to fight in the style of a snake or a tiger. But I proved unworthy and fell prey to dishonourable emotions.

It all happened more than ten years ago now. I found myself on a remote island reached by boat from Hong Kong. It was dominated by a great golden Buddha, and the only accommodation available to weary travellers was provided by monks. But callers at their gate had to pass an exacting initiation test. Demonstrating humility and candour, we had to prove that we had the price of a bunk bed and buffet-style breakfast on us. It was my destiny to fulfil the task without error. As I entered the temple compound, I could sense the monks thinking: "This young man has everything it takes to live among our elite brotherhood. When he takes his wallet out, his quicksilver hands speak for themselves. He is a natural in the ancient western art of parting with money on holiday."

My chance to learn the monks' secrets came before the night was out. The tolling of a bell roused me from the spiritually nourishing discomfort of my bunk. I slipped into my clothes and hurried through the darkened grounds in the direction of candlelight and chanting, which issued from the temple itself. The forbidden mysteries of kung fu would be mine! But all at once, my way was barred by a snarling dog; then another, and another. They had been set loose overnight. I turned on my heel and fled back to the dorm, realising to my shame that I had been set a challenge and had failed.

I had long resigned myself to remaining uninitiated in the mysteries of the Orient when I heard about Kung Fu Connection. A new video label that has just released its first films, it specialises in "pure kung fu", according to the label's promoter, Richard Larcombe. "No gunplay, no faking, no wires," he promised, perhaps recognising in me the younger man who had set himself the impossible goal of mastering the discipline at its most rarefied. Larcombe was not lying. Shaolin vs Lama (18) and Born Invincible (15), the first titles in the series, are a double bill of double-jointed action. As well as boasting perhaps the best fight sequence featuring a whole roast chicken ever filmed, Shaolin vs Lama spotlights a peppery old abbot with an industrial vocabulary. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Fu Fighters
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.