Thursday, November 25, 2010

Top 10 Teachers, Gurus, and Sifus

In honor of Richard Lee's birthday, the man that has been a guru of sorts in helping me get my blog up and running, I would like to dedicate this Top 10 list of the best Teachers, Gurus, and Sifus to the guy who has taught me the ins and outs of networking online and has given me tons of invaluable advice. Thanks for all the support bro and for being there to take care of my sister, you're like family to me man.

10. Morpheus from The Matrix - So kicking off this list will be something related to computers and technology, which seemed totally relevant to me. With your expertise and invaluable advice, much like how Morpheus took an open minded individual and help shape him into "The One", you've helped shape the direction and structure of my blog.

9. Sarah Connor from Terminator 1 & 2 - Not that you remind me a woman or anything, it's just that Sarah Connor is a tough-as-nails single mother who has the monumental responsibility of raising the last hope for mankind. You see, her son is supposed to grow up to be the leader of the resistance against machines in the future. After running away and screaming for most of the first movie, she earns her spot by coming back in the sequel as a super bad ass mother that's ready to fight!!!

8. Léon from The Professional - Léon is a professional assassin who, by a series of strange events, somehow ends up taking a 12 year-old under his wing and teaches her the ropes. (This film also marks the debut of a young Natalie Portman, who is fantastic as the young protege of this professional hitman) As tough as it must be for Sarah Connor to be a single mother, Léon isn't even her father. What's worse, the young girl is getting her emotions mixed up and believes that she's falling for him. All this and he's trying to juggle his career as a "cleaner". Very impressive.

7. Pai Mei from Kill Bill: Vol 2 - This crazy old Chinese kung fu master atop a giant mountain of stairs trains only assassins of the highest caliber. Despite being a bit of a hardass, you cannot deny that his teaching methods are extremely effective. By far the most brutal and hardcore sifu on the list, this crazy old man will snatch out your eye for looking at him the wrong way.

6. Angelina Jolie from Wanted - Without a doubt the HOTTEST teacher on this list, Angelina Jolie earns her spot on this list based on more than just her looks. Her teaching credentials? She taught James McAvoy how to freakin' curve bullets!! You can't tell me that's not pretty damn impressive.

5. Yoda from Star Wars - Respected by all Jedi, Yoda is a highly skilled and extremely powerful Jedi Master. In addition to being able to flip around like a Tasmanian Devil on speed wielding a lightsaber, he taught Luke Skywalker how to lift an X-Wing out of a swamp using The Force at 900 years old!! Still on top of his game...

4. Jackie Chan from The Karate Kid - Why does Jackie Chan's character from The Karate Kid remake beat out all these other seemingly more bad ass teachers such as Yoda or Morpheus? (Or even Mr. Miyagi from the original for that matter?) There is a simple explanation, anyone who can take a kid that just arrives in China from America with absolutely NO martial arts experience whatsoever... train and enter him into a tournament where he wins by defeating a group of Chinese kids that have been training in Kung Fu their entire lives... is worthy of being called one of the greatest teachers in the UNIVERSE. I saw the Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony, they're super serious when it comes to training, coordination, and perfection over there. This impressive feat was nothing short of a miracle. (And yes, that feat trumps "wax on, wax off" any day!!)

3. Leung Tsang from Warrior Two - This Wing Chun master trains super-kicker, Casanova Wong, using such unique methods as crushing pits using the staff, special training with timed wooden dummies, and hand/eye coordination tests that involve hitting a ball that's swinging on a string using only the staff. Passing just enough knowledge down to his newest pupil before he is viciously murdered by a band of thugs, Leung Tsang (the "old" guy in the trailer played by Leung Kar-Yan) is one of the greatest Wing Chun masters ever portrayed in cinema history. His student goes on to defeat top level Kung Fu fighters including a man whose body was seeming impenetrable, even by swords!! (Iron Shirt technique)

2. Lam Ching Ying (and Sammo Hung) from The Prodigal Son - Along with the previously mentioned Warriors Two, these two movies were long considered to be the best films portraying authentic Wing Chun martial arts. Funny enough, this film is about a young Leung Chang (or Tsang, the master from the last film), played by Yuen Biao, as he uses his father's money in an attempt to learn Wing Chun from a traveling opera troupe actor who also happens to a master. There is also a hilarious appearance by Sammo Hung who takes on a role as a secondary master of sorts. Both of them train Yuen Biao in different aspects of Wing Chun, who goes on to teach it to Cashier Hua as his master in Warriors Two.

1. Ip Man from the Ip Man series - This dramatic semi-biopic of a real life Wing Chun master stars Donnie Yen as the legendary master, Ip Man. This film is the most recent and wildly popular portrayal of Wing Chun on the big screen. Yen's lightning quick hands showcase the speed, fluidity, and deadly accuracy of a Wing Chun master. As seen in the clip above, this film features Donnie Yen laying waste to ten Karate black belts at once!!! More importantly, the significance of this series is due to the fact that the man this martial arts epic was based on was also the real-life Wing Chun teacher of...

Bruce Lee!!!

I hope everyone has a Happy Thanksgiving and thanks again to Richard Lee for all the support. Thanks to everyone who took the time to read this.


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