First of all, i must say something in defense of Mr. Ho Chung Tao, better known to kungfu fans as “Bruce Li.”
Ho Chung Tao’s hero of course, was Bruce Lee. He loved Bruce Lee. Idolised him. but then, so did alotta people in Asia in the 1970’s.
Ho Chung Tao trained like Bruce Lee, was outstanding in Wing Chun, Taekwondo, Gymnastics, and other martial arts.
A friend of his introduced him to film makers and said “who does he look like from this angle?”
This was right after Bruce Lee died. Immediately he was cast as Bruce Lee in biography flicks, and when he met Jimmy Shaw, he was given the name Bruce Li.
He reluctantly accepted so he could work, but inside he really wanted to be himself, while paying homage to his hero.
He was approached to be in Bruce Lee’s doomed “Game of Death,” but he declined when he learned he would only be one of many look alikes to be playing Bruce Lee’s role.
“I said I’ll do it just me, by myself. I want to do right by Bruce.” But director Robert Clouse went the other way instead.
After doing a lot of “Brucesploitation” flicks, he did get to direct some himself, and did some more original type stuff, in which he absolutely shines.
One movie is “Kung Fu Soul Brother” where he befriends a young black man and teaches him Kung Fu.
The best of Ho Chung Tao, I believe, is “Return of the Dragon.” directed by Jimmy Shaw in 1979, and also stars Angela Mao Ying (Enter the Dragon) and, why not, Paul Smith (Popeye 1980) who played Brutus alongside Robin Williams and Shelly Duval in Popeye the following year.
In Dragon, Smith plays a big time heroin dealer, Ho Chung Tao(as Bruce Li) and Angela Mao (as Mao Ying) play undercover narcotics officers who are outstanding Kung Fu experts.
The action is superb, the camera and editing is quick and energetic, and this movie is simply not to be missed.
Watch it for Ho Chung Tao, not Bruce Li, if you know what I mean. He doesn’t copy Bruce Lee at all in this movie, he has his own cool, cocky-but-not-arrogant way that says he’s got the confidence to deliver the goods, which he does in every fight scene. I GUARANTEE this film to be every bit as entertaining as I’ve let on.
Comment from Rob: Great reviews and insight! Thanks for letting us know.