Bruce Lee: the man behind the kung fu

Bruce Lee: the man behind the kung fu

He's famous for his martial arts, but an exhibition about his life shows another side of him

What's Bruce Lee's favourite drink? Wata! (Sounds like water? And "wata" is the sound Lee makes when hitting someone during a fight. No? Okay, awkward).

Here's another question. Do you know there's a Bruce Lee exhibition at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum? Well, I certainly hope so! It has been open since July 20, 2013 and will close on July 20, 2018.

The exhibition is a reflection of Lee as an icon and his impact on Hong Kong's culture. It offers a chance for Lee's fans to get to know their idol better.

Since Hong Kong has struggled to get a Bruce Lee museum going, the exhibition is the next best thing.

He went to school here, made some of his best films here (starring in his first film as a baby in Golden Gate Girl), and started his martial arts career here. So it makes sense to dedicate an exhibition to one of Hong Kong's most famous stars. The exhibition certainly delivers, considering the entrance fee is just HK$10. And on a Wednesday, it's free admission! But then again, you also have to get to the museum itself, so why bother with all the hassle, when you can sit at home and read up on Lee?

Well, the internet can't give you the feeling of walking around and experiencing Lee's greatest moments. You can learn just as much through the displays as you can on the internet, without having to search for it.

There are more than 65 old school magazine covers, and more than 100 black and white photos, blurbs and explanations about his life. There are also action figures and video clips. And of course, his signature nunchucks and yellow jumpsuit are at the centre of the display.

The exhibit is handily split into sections based on Lee's role in each of his movies. For example, the Green Hornet section is jam-packed with everything Kato.

More than 600 unique items that you can't find anywhere else in the world are on display. Many of these are originals from film sets and used by Lee himself. Take that, internet!

Young or old, everyone can learn something new here. For example, did you know Lee came 37th out of 40 in his class at school?

Fans appreciate the amount of information on display.

"It's like we're all here for the same reason: to learn about, relive, and revive Lee's life. It's as if he's still here, and that makes me feel nostalgic," said Louis Wong, 17, a former Sha Tin College student. "I've been a diehard Bruce Lee fan since I was six. This exhibit is definitely much better than just reading about him online."

The exhibition ends with a 75-minute documentary that ties everything together. It features interviews with Lee, those closest to him, and those who worked with him. Watching it, you can't help but feel sad about the loss of such a great man.

A head's up: you aren't allowed to take photos at the exhibit. Sounds like an excuse to go more than once! So "wata" you waiting for?!

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
Bruce Lee: not just kung fu

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