Intl. Notebook Feb 13 2018
EXIT THE DRAGON
The king has left the building.


We ran across this 1974 Bruce Lee memorial magazine originally printed in Hong Kong and sold throughout South Asia and had to share it. The cover is amazing, we think, with its blue background and golden hand graphics. The interior photos aren't in color except for the insides of the the covers, but among them are some interesting ones, including childhood shots, photos of his wife Linda Emery, promo images from his movies, and a couple of shots of Lee in his coffin, which some may find morbid. We especially like the production photo of Lee and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar from Game of Death, and the shot of him with his son Brandon. The magazine is short—only 26 pages including the covers, but on the rear you get a photo medley of Lee in various modes, which is a nice way to end the collection. We have more pieces of Lee memorabilia in the website, so click his keywords at bottom if you want to check those out.

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Intl. Notebook Mar 21 2014
CULTURE CLASH
It’s my way, Chuck, or the highway.

 

Above is a cover of Martial Magazine from Hong Kong featuring Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris. Save for their devotion to martial arts, it’s very possible that two people could not be more different—Bruce Lee was a philosophical atheist who wrote poetry and preached peace, while Norris is a fundamentalist science skeptic. Strange bedfellows indeed. The photo is from the climactic battle of 1972’s The Way of the Dragon, a pretty cool movie set mostly in Rome.

 

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Intl. Notebook Jan 8 2012
TAO OF COOL
It's not how you look on the outside. Its what you are on the inside.

Above you see a prized part of our collection—five vintage Bruce Lee promo posters produced in Hong Kong from 1971 to 1973. We still have probably ten more Lee posters, which we’ll get uploaded sometime in the near future. 

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Intl. Notebook Jul 28 2011
BRUCE ON THE LOOSE
The man with the Dragon kung fu.

We found something quite cool yesterday—six Enter the Dragon lobby cards produced in Hong Kong and featuring the one and only Bruce Lee. Looking at them, we aren't sure they're all actually from Enter the Dragon, but that's the way they were packaged. Five of the cards are printed film frames and feature him in full ass-kicking action, but the last one, at bottom, is the true winner, showing a smiling Lee during a break in filming. Assuming these are indeed all from the set of Dragon, it would have been the spring of 1973, when Lee was on top of the world. And in that last shot he looks like it. Just a few months later, in July, he would be gone.  

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Modern Pulp Mar 22 2011
FIST FIGHTING
Whatever you call it, as long as it has Bruce Lee it’s all good.

Above, a poster for Bruce Lee’s Fist of Fury, made for the DVD release around 1999 or 2000. Fist of Fury should not be confused with Fists of Fury. The latter was released in 1971 and was known in the U.S. as The Big Boss, whereas Fist of Fury was known as The Chinese Connection as well as The Iron Hand, and its Mandarin title was Jīng Wǔ Mén. Got all that? Great. Fist of Fury premiered in Hong Kong today in 1972. 

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Musiquarium Dec 27 2010
BRUCE FORCE
My way or the highway.

You can keep your Christmas music—we’ve been listening to Bruce Lee. On this 45 record from 1972, Bruce explains his philosophies of self-discipline and self-defense, in both English and Cantonese. Lee was popular—we all know that. But the very existence of this record speaks to the intensity of worldwide interest in the man, his movies, and his unparalleled skills at pimp smacking bad guys. Put another way—can you imagine an action star putting out a release like this today? We think not. The record would be better if Lee were the only one speaking, but every Gladys Knight needs her Pips, seemingly. You can listen to My Way of Kung-Fu here. 

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Vintage Pulp Apr 15 2010
DEATH PROOF
Don’t love the Game, love the player.

Mining dead artists for profit is a well-established (if ethically dubious) tradition. Ernest Hemingway somehow kept publishing novels after his suicide. Tupac Shakur released more albums after he was shot to death than when he was alive. And Game of Death, for which you see the Japanese promo art above, hit theaters after Bruce Lee died unexpectedly during filming. The film's producers, who had been left with a large cash outlay and no star, cobbled together a disjointed finished product using doubles and old footage, and when the end result was unveiled to the world, everyone from Lee’s family to his die-hard fans labeled it a blight on Lee’s legacy. But we take a different view. Lee wasn’t famous because he was an actor—he was famous because he was a visual artist. His acting was always secondary, merely a convenient medium of delivery for his martial arts. Like a dead musician whose final few great songs are released on a disc filled out by mediocre live recordings and outtakes, Game of Death’s Lee footage should be judged apart from the film as a whole. Seen in that light, you’ll be able to appreciate the fact that Lee is sublime in his last few choreographed fights, even if the filler material surrounding him is a mess. From what we’ve read, Lee’s original concept for this movie was ambitious, interweaving bits of philosophy and spirituality into a violent quest for higher consciousness in both life and martial arts. Had the project been finished, it probably would have been the greatest martial arts epic ever made. But even if the film never reached such lofty heights, we can still enjoy Lee’s last moments working in the craft he loved. Game of Death premiered today in Japan in 1978. More rare promo art below.

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Intl. Notebook Mar 9 2010
MARTIAL LAW
No retreat, no surrender.

Covers and interior images of Bruce Lee from assorted Hong Kong martial arts and cinema magazines, circa early 1970s. Click keyword "Bruce Lee" below to see more magazine covers.

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Musiquarium Mar 31 2009
LALO FOR A WHILE


Assorted album sleeves from Argentine soundtrack maestro Lalo Schifrin, circa 1970s.

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Intl. Notebook Mar 29 2009
KUNG FU FIGHTING
Bruce Lee demonstrates several of his thousand methods for kicking ass.


Various martial arts and cinema magazines, including Screen, just above, with Bruce Lee on the covers, circa 1970s.

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Next Page
History Rewind
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
December 16
1985—Gotti Ascends to Mafia Throne
In New York City, mafiosi Paul Castellano and Thomas Bilotti are shot dead on the orders of John Gotti, paving the way for Gotti to assume leadership of the powerful Gambino crime family. Gotti is eventually arrested by federal authorities in 1990, and dies of throat cancer in 2002 in a federal prison hospital.
December 15
1944—Bandleader Glenn Miller Disappears
World famous big band leader Glenn Miller, who was flying from England to Paris in a small plane, disappears over the English Channel. One theory holds that his plane was knocked down by bombs jettisoned from bombers passing high above after an aborted raid on Germany, but no cause of his disappearance is officially listed, and no trace of Miller, the crew, or the plane is ever found.
1973—Getty Heir Found Alive
John Paul Getty III, grandson of American billionaire J. Paul Getty, is found alive near Naples, Italy, after being kidnapped by an Italian gang on July 10, 1973. The gang members had cut off his ear and mailed it to Getty III, but he otherwise is in good health.
December 14
1911—Team Reaches South Pole
Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, along with his team Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting, becomes the first person to reach the South Pole. After a celebrated career, Amundsen eventually disappears in 1928 while returning from a search and rescue flight at the North Pole. His body is never found.
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