Chang Cheh, the man who directed and crafted so many of the great
classic kung fu films for Shaw Brothers was having his career reflected
on in one of the many Chinese magazines that I acquire every month. At
the end of the article they translated into English a quote that Chang
Cheh had said during an interview on the 'Chinese kung fu movie
business,' which despite the broken translation sums up for me the fact
that despite all the trends in Hong Kong cinema the kung fu movie will
live on forever, supporting also our claim on the front cover of this
magazine that "The Kung Fu Film is Back."
"Every country has its own culture, tradition and impression which
is reflected in their movies. The Chinese movie business bloomed after
America and Japan.
"The Chinese movie in the past had put a tremendous emphasis on
love stories. Realising this, I deliberately brought out the kung fu
movie. I brought out this type of movie partly because of my personal
interest, partly because I realise that there is not much difference
[between] Chinese and Western movies in love story composing. Bruce Lee
was the representative figure of the period when the kung fu movie
reached its peak. As far as I can see, Chinese directors in directing
those action movies had employed a special technique much more advanced
than the Western directors.
"The Chinese movie is very much restricted by the political
situation. It depends solely on overseas Chinese consumption. Besides,
the Chinese kung fu movie is very much restricted due to the different
concept the West has towards war.
"Though nowadays the West tends to show a tremendous interest in
oriental philosophy, their view tends to be very superficial.
Nevertheless, there are certainly outstanding kung fu movies which can
occupy a place in the history of Chinese film making."