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The 9 most important martial arts (movie) kicks of all time

Michael Fassbender is about to get his ass kicked by a girl.

IF YOU EVER watched Enter the Dragon, and we’re just going to go ahead and presume you have, we know you remember Bruce Lee’s terrifying kick to the side of Han’s head.

While that’s one of the most well-recognised kicks in martial arts movies, there’s a few more out there that are unmissable.

It’s hard to pick just one kick or in some cases series of kicks out of all the complex, carefully choreographed fight scenes in the movies we love, but we decided to give it a shot anyway. Here are some of the strongest, fanciest, and most memorable kicks we’ve seen at the movies.

Tony Jaa in Ong Bak

Tony Jaa ends this fight with one awesome kick in less time than it took you to read this.

YouTube credit: yordan1978

Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon

At the end of Enter the Dragon, as Han (Kien Shih) tries to escape, Bruce Lee chases him into his underground hall of mirrors. While the entire scene is memorable, this speed-of-lightning kick to the head from Bruce Lee is our favorite.

YouTube credit: ChenTheWarrior

Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon

Bruce Lee delivers two awesome kicks to O’Hara (Robert Hall), Han’s bodyguard, as well. The first is when O’Hara grabs his leg, and Lee does a flip of sorts and kicks him the in the face. The other is the kick that ends the fight and that sent Hall to the hospital.

YouTube credit: movieclips

Jean Claude Van Damme in Bloodsport

After Chong Li’s character blinds Jean Claude Van Damme, he uses his early training to force Li to surrender. Only after three awesome kicks to the face of course. Though you’ve definitely seen this kick in many of his movies.

YouTube credit: Leandro MoiKano

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Tan Tao Liang in The Invincible Kung Fu Legs

Tan Tao Liang was known for his signature kick, a hop and kick a few times in a row,  that you’d see a lot of at the end of The Invincible Kung Fu Legs. We couldn’t find the one we were looking for. But here’s a cool montage of his kicks and an interview with the man himself.

YouTube credit: junan6265

Donnie Yen in Iron Monkey

In this scene from Iron Monkey, Donnie Yen fights Shaolin disciples and we get to see one of his signature kicks. Pretty much everything from the 1:20 – 1:55 mark is awesome, but watch him split, kick two guys, and then kick a third straight on.

YouTube credit: MrDavepod

Yuen Biao in Twinkle, Twinkle Lucky Stars

A signature Yuen Biao kick in Twinkle Twinkle, Lucky Stars. The movie’s puerile humor can be a drag, but Yuen Biao, Jackie Chan, and young Michelle Yeoh (this is one of her first movies) make this movie worth a watch.

YouTube credit: karasu0

Gina Carano in Haywire

While I wasn’t a fan of Haywire, Gina Carano’s powerful kick that sent Michael Fassbender through the door was so strong on-screen, it had everyone at the cinema jerk back and wince. It’s around the 1:55 mark.

YouTube credit:lolwatchfunny

Ken Lo in Drunken Master 2

Okay, we cheated. This isn’t just one kick, it’s all the kicks by Ken Lo, Jackie Chan’s former bodyguard. We didn’t know it was possible for legs to move like that.

YouTube credit: Beautoks

Add your favorites in the comments section below.

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