Martial Arts Movie Marathon

After coming up with the Jackie Chan 24-hour movie marathon, it left me wondering what a 24-hour martial arts movie marathon would look like. The problem is that there are hundreds, nay, thousands of martial arts movies out there. How do you pick out the best ones?

If you are Quentin Tarantino, picking out the best is easy since you’ve already seen them all (you’re just that good). For us mere mortals, however, we might just have to pick some of the best out of a hat, cram them into a 24-hour movie marathon, and call it good – knowing that some purist out there will dispute our choices no matter what schedule we choose.

So I give you – the best martial arts movie marathon out of a hat!

Martial Arts Movie Marathon Movies

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Crouching Tiger Hidden DragonMy Take: Teenage girl does typical teenage rebellious things – steal swords of destiny, exploit secrets of kung fu from ancient scrolls, run out of an arranged marriage – that sort of thing.There are zero tigers and zero dragons in this film. Crouching or otherwise.

The 36th Chamber of Shaolin

The 36th Chamber Of ShaolinMy Take: A kung fu movie actually about kung fu. It takes a while to learn, there are no wires to assist you while jumping around, and there is no five-point palm exploding heart technique. “The Matrix” it a’int.

Drunken Master

Drunken MasterMy Take: Jackie Chan is a disobedient boy who is punished by his father…to learn kung fu by a great master. Why did I follow the rules as a kid again?

The Chinese Connection

The Chinese ConnectionMy Take: Master dead, student mad, revenge, blah blah blah. It’s every Kung Fu plot ever. Thankfully, this movie has Bruce Lee. ‘Nuff said.

Ip Man

My Take:Ip Man Donnie Yen is “Ip Man”, a master of Wing Chun who politely beats people up at their request. Then the Japanese occupy China and rudely ask to be beaten up. Ip Man obliges.


Ong BakMy Take: Wait, what? A martial arts movie not based on Kung Fu? Isn’t that against the law? Anyway, Ting – a Muay Thai expert – is upset someone stole the head off his village’s Buddha statue. He decides to write a strongly worded letter to the editor about it. Then maybe gets into a fight or two. The end.


FearlessMy Take: Another good martial arts film. This one with Jet Li. What? You wanted to know the plot? Does it matter?

Kung Fu Hustle

Kung Fu HustleMy Take: Kung Fu masters in disguise run a slum in Canton and don’t take well to being pushed around by the local mob. It seems like secretly being a Kung Fu master would helpful almost any profession. Think of how dramatically efficient “kung fu librarian” would be.

The Legend of Drunken Master

The Legend Of Drunken MasterMy Take: Jackie Chan is an expert in Drunken Boxing style Kung Fu. This has to be one of the most amusing fighting style names ever. Someone should invent “Drunken Gymnast” style Kung Fu quick to top this!

Enter the Dragon

Enter The DragonMy Take: Bruce Lee goes undercover in a martial arts tournament to find out what is going on an island full of bad guys (spoiler alert: they are up to no good). Dr. Claw from Inspector Gadget makes an appearance (second spoiler alert: the plot is just an excuse for Bruce Lee to show how awesome he is.)

Tai-Chi Master

Tai-Chi MasterMy Take: In this 90-minute exercise video, Jet Li guides you through the serenity, focus, and relaxation of Tai-Chi – with BONE-CRUNCHING, CRAZED REVENGE-FUELED ACTION.

Police Story

Police StoryMy Take: In this movie, Jackie Chan plays a Hong Kong Supercop…whoops, wait, that’s seven years after this movie. Instead, he plays a Hong Kong cop who is super at Kung Fu. There. That clears it up.

Martial Arts Movie Marathon Schedule

Start TimeTitle
12:00 PMCrouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
02:30 PMThe 36th Chamber of Shaolin
04:45 PMDrunken Master
06:45 PMThe Chinese Connection
09:00 PMIp Man
11:00 PMOng-Bak
01:00 AMFearless
03:00 AMKung Fu Hustle
04:45 AMThe Legend of Drunken Master
06:30 AMEnter the Dragon
08:30 AMTai-Chi Master
10:15 AMPolice Story
12:00 PMFinish