The Dojo Scroll edition is back with part 2 of our recommended reading list. This is not meant to be a comprehensive list so, again feel free to post your good reads in the comment section of this blog. Knowledge has always been a central theme of kung fu movies (remember in Shaolin Plot the lengths Prince Daglen went through to get the manuals of Wu Tang And Shaolin)  and studying what you love always is a good thing, right? Without further ado here’s my recommendations for some good reading as it relates to the greatest genre of film ( well at least in my opinion).


electric shadows


An excellent ( and very affordable) look at the history of the Chinese martial arts film dating back to the silent movie era! Provides little known facts on major stars of the era and is an informative history. Author Jean Lukitsh lets her passion for the genre shine through her pen. I can’t wait for Volume 2!


Bill Palmer, Karen Palmer, and Ric Meyers outdo themselves with this classic genre encyclopedia. This book holds a plethora of information and covers the genre from 1920 to 1994. Great reference book! Definitely a must have!



Jackie Chan tell his story in this entertaining autobiography. And it’s Jackie Chan the living icon of Hong Kong action and kung fu movies. Get this book!



A nice book with some beautiful pictures from the lush locations. Facts about the Wu Xia genre of martial arts film, the meaning of the title, and notes from David Bordwell! The complete screenplay is included as well! Even your non-kung fu movie loving friends will read this book. A beautiful edition to your library.

planet hong kong


One of the best works on Hong Kong Cinema (which includes kung fu movies) with analysis of action sequences, camera angles, and the sheer fun that was Hong Kong Cinema of the 90’s. Chapters such as Two Dragons which focus on Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan, information on wu xia pian,  film criticism, Wong Jing films, and much more. This is a detailed text on Hong Kong Cinema and was used in film study courses. Check out this David Bordwell article on Shaw Scope to sample his writing style and vast film knowledge(visit his site while you’re there).



An excellent and inspirational book about Chuck Norris written by Chuck Norris. He talks about Tang Soo Do training, life, and much more. A nice read about an American martial arts star and film legend and superstar. Give it read, if you haven’t or maybe a re-read.



A good book analyzing Yuen Woo Ping’s Wing Chun. The book goes into interesting multiple level readings of the film. If you are interested in film criticism and the breakdown of a film on multiple levels this book is for you. It also examines Yuen Woo Ping as a director, Michelle Yeoh’s performance, and give many interesting points about the film that I didn’t notice. A good addition to the library of the future film reviewer or critic.