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Be Water

Be Water

In the two years before his death, Bruce Lee completed four films which changed the history of film and made him a household name.

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In 1971, before his super stardom, Bruce Lee returned to Hong Kong to get the opportunities to be a lead actor that eluded him in America. In the two years before his untimely death, Lee completed four films which changed the history of film and made him a household name. Through rare archival footage, memories of family and friends, and his own words, the story of that time and Lee’s prior experiences are told with an intimacy and immediacy that have infrequently been used in earlier tellings of his legend. Growing up and living between the West and the East, Lee was ahead of his time in thinking about the transnational audience. He experienced the racist reaction of an American film industry inundated by a subservient and menacing image of Asian people—and learned he’d have to tell his own stories to escape it. Director Bao Nguyen elegantly weaves Lee’s personal struggle for visibility with that of his times and reminds us that though it was for a short time, Lee’s star burned so brightly we still see it today.



  • projection time:
    97 min.
  • country/year:
    USA, UK / 2020
  • director:
    Bao Nguyen
  • pictures:
    Caleb Heller
  • production:
    Julia Nottingham / Dorothy Street Pictures
  • awards :
    2020 – Sundance FF, 2020 – American Film Festival, Wroclaw

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