In 1965 Bruce Lee sat down for what at first appeared to be an interview but starts looking more like an audition. Either way, the video has resurfaced in time to give the world a little bit of a reprieve from all of the recent events. For years Bruce Lee made a name for himself with his kung fu moves with his signature near jet black hair above his brows like a curtain. But in 1965 he was acting in Hong Kong having yet to cross over to American films.
In the clip Lee gets into the difference between the styles of martial arts and explains why kung fu is his favorite style by comparing it to water. Yeah, water. He says that kung fu is the ancestor of karate and jujitsu but kung fu is more fluid. It’s hard to imagine how hitting someone or kicking the air at with the force of a lightning strike could be like water. But Lee explains it beautifully saying, “Because water is the softest substance in the world but yet it can penetrate the hardest rock, or anything, granite, you name it.” He goes on to say “water also is insubstantial. By that I mean you cannot grasp nor hold it. You cannot punch it and hurt it.”
According to the late actor and kung fu master, everyone that practices the art wants to be “soft like water and flexible and adapt itself to its opponent.” The interview wasn’t all philosophy and metaphors. Towards the end of the interview Lee is asked to demonstrate his unimaginable talent on a trepidatious volunteer that comically flinched every time Lee’s fist or foot came mere inches from his face. Honestly, while it was funny, any sane person would flinch if the Bruce Lee’s fist was flying towards your face with so much force that your hair flies backwards. Valid reaction.
Lee was one of the best at his craft in Hollywood and I’d wager to guess, around the globe. While he is no longer here, his legacy lives on through his films and this gem of an interview.