Enlightenment from Martial Arts Films
By Paul Asay
Thwap! Whiff! Shroop! Aaarrgghh! These are the sounds of a typical martial arts film. They do not suggest deep introspection. Rarely do samurais or ninjas clasp hands and sing camp songs.
But don't turn away yet, Grasshopper. Like "The Karate Kid" remake, coming to theaters June 11, the following martial arts movies offer lessons that go beyond flinging nunchucks and roundhouse kicks. After all, there's a philosophy behind nearly every form of martial art, and many of its best practitioners ritually find inner peace before they wreak outer chaos. Martial arts are about becoming a better person, inside and out: The whole breaking-bricks-with-your-hands thing is just gravy.
So put on your canvas gi, polish your katana, and enter the spiritually rich world of martial arts cinema, where enlightenment comes like—and sometimes with—a swift kick to the head.