The soundtrack, quotes and review of the modern classic movie “Enter the Dragon” with master of master´s Bruce Lee.
I have given a lot of thought to what my first soundtrack post was going to be, I have huge respect for music, books and movies, so I decided to choose something that represented all that, there will be plenty of time to discuss favorite and iconic soundtracks. Also, I do not want to get in trouble with my husband or any of my male friends by saying anything except wonderful things about the movies, and of course, the grand master of all Bruce Lee.
While reading up on the movie score, I thought there were 2 “dragons” involved. One is Bruce Lee and the second one is Lalo Schifrin. Then I went and watched the movie again and realized there are at least 4 dragons: Lee, Schifrin, the character “Williams” and the clothes!
About Lee I will just say that he was a martial arts expert and a filmmaker and also a pop icon of the 20th century, setting a unique tone to martial arts films. Chuck Norris: Bruce Lee is your father. Lee is the energy force behind the movie (sadly he died six days prior to the release of the film).
If Lee is the energy behind the movie, Lalo Schifrin is the, he is the…the wind beneath his wings (shoot me, shot me now but that is all that came to mind). The way he scored the film, with a soundtrack full of colors and images and perfect pacing…it was for me personally what I remembered more about the film.
- “Theme from Enter the Dragon”: Perfection.
- “Sampans”: Class and elegance.
- “The Monk”: Full of images and textures and alive.
- “The Gentle Softness” – “Roper: Would you look at that? A woman like that could teach you a lot about yourself.”
- “The Big Battle”: “Lee: Why doesn’t somebody pull out a .45 and, bang, settle it?”
- “Han’s Island”: Nostalgic and evoking with a dark side.
- “The Human Fly”: Suspense and action “a la” oriental.
- “Bamboo Bird Cage”: Funk at its finest.
- “Broken Mirrors”: Dwelling dragons.
- “Theme from Enter the Dragon (reprise)”
Next comes Williams. Played by actor Jim Kelly (Williams was his debut role). The man has the best afro and even though I hate sideburns, he has the best ones EVER! The teeth, the smile, the swagger…I think I don´t buy into the “prince Charming” idea, but this one you could sell to me…how he confronts antagonists “Han” (Shih Kien) and doesn’t sell out his friends. Well it may have cost him his life, but I´m pretty sure he won the hearts of fans around the world. (And mine, he conquered mine).
And finally I would like to address the clothes… Sheng-hsi Chu is responsible for the coolest wardrobe in any martial arts film. Bruce Lee in boxers (Bruce Lee looked incredible in boxers), the Shaolin master with his orange robe and accentuated white eyebrows, Williams first scene wearing red corduroy pants, red jean jacket and a yellow turtle neck, Bruce Lee shirtless and in training pants (Bruce Lee looked incredible shirtless.) William´s yellow uniform and his classic sneakers, Bruce Lee in uniform (did I say Bruce Lee looked incredible in uniform?) Genius. I was completely transported to the seventies, to the cool and collected vibe the film wanted to portray. Williams sums it up with this quote:
“Han: We are all ready to win, just as we are born knowing only life. It is defeat that you must learn to prepare for.
Williams: I don’t waste my time with it. When it comes, I won’t even notice.
Han: Oh? How so?
Williams: I’ll be too busy looking gooood”.
It is hard for me to choose what made the movie become the cult icon it is, but I am guessing these 4 dragons I mentioned had a lot to do with it. Do you think there is another hidden dragon worth analyzing?
Lalo Schifrin: He was born in Argentina in 1932. He is a composer arranger and conductor. A worldwide renowned jazz musician, he was friends with Dizzy Gillespie and played the Piano for Argentinean legend Astor Piazolla. He has won 4 Grammy awards and 6 Oscar nominations, besides this soundtrack and many others, he is recognized for his work in the Dirty Harry films and the “Theme from Mission: Impossible”. Our man is still alive.