It took Bruce Lee only a few years to change forever the way that Hong Kong films were made. His box office success in Asia was so huge that US companies like Warner Bros couldn't ignore what a phenomenon this man had become. Such was his influence that Warner's agreed to a co-production with Lee's Hong Kong film outfit Concord Production (co-owned by Raymond Chow). The result was "Enter The Dragon", and although Lee never lived to see its incredible reception, it proved that his self-belief and determination was wholly justified.
Speculating on what films Bruce might have produced after "Enter The Dragon" is pointless. Even the greatest stars make clunkers, but each of Lee's films had been vast improvements on the preceding one, and "Enter The Dragon" marked a new high point in Bruce's ability to marry brilliant choreography with dynamic shooting styles.
What's less incredible is the plot. Bruce Lee is recruited by British intelligence to investigate the activities of the sinister Han, who is involved in such shady dealings as drug running and prostitution. Bruce's cover is that he's a competitor for Han's annual martial arts tournament. As is often the case, there's a personal score to be settled too, as Lee's sister was killed as a result of Han's activities.
While this provides Lee with ample screen time to show off his skills, director Robert Clouse still manages to pack plenty of opportunities for co-stars John Saxon and Jim Kelly to shine as fellow competitors. The end result is not far off "Shaft" meets James Bond, but rest assured that if you were to spend time watching other US or Hong Kong action films of the period, you would find none of equal. "Enter The Dragon" could have been just the beginning for Bruce Lee's career, but even though it wasn't, it's nevertheless a triumphant legacy.
Read a review of the "Enter The Dragon" DVD.