Bruce Lee improbable reflexes!

This man was like no other…

I am no great fan of 1970s Chinese martial arts films but sometimes you have to see it to believe it.  I don’t even know the provenance of these videos, though one is a Nokia ad for the China market — the ‘making of’ for this would be something to see in its own right.  No matter: they must be watched.

Bruce Lee playing table tennis with nunchucks and is presumably a masterful piece of editing incorporating an old Bruce Lee martial arts film because he died many years before this Nokia phone was introduced. Maybe, in fact, that is not Bruce Lee at all.

In any case, it is the video below that caused me to marvel.  In it, Bruce Lee has taped a small friction board onto the end of his nunchucks and then uses it to light a match held in a man’s mouth.  OK, you think, that’s impressive: but then he starts to flick the matches out of the air and you can see their flames arcing through the dark room.  To the literary minded, it recalls the climactic scene in Lawrence Durrell’s Alexandria Quartet in which Narouz stands on his balcony with a whip lashing bats as they dart around the evening sky.  But that was fiction.