Filipino Martial Arts (FMA)

Filipino Martial Arts in Movies, on TV and Documentaries

FMA in movies

FMA in the movies as rapidly increased, we can see it in The Hunted, The Bourne Identity, 300 and The Book of Eli to name a few. Here under there is a clip from It is a kind gentlemen that has taken the time to edit some clips from different movies that has FMA in them.  I first saw this clip on Datu Tim Hartmans blog. Right then I thought to myself, this is something I want to mention in my blog. So  a lot of movies that has FMA in them. I think that  some of the reasons to why this is, is because of the nature of FMA, it is weapon based art (knifes, sticks, swords, flexible and improvised weapons). As long as we are honest, FMA can look really cool and flashy,  that makes it perfect for the TV. It should be noted that even  if FMA can look really flashy as do a lot of another martial arts, FMA is still a highly effective combat art that roots from a warrior culture.
If you know a movie with some nice FMA moves in them, please recommend them in the comment section. I will give you a list of those that I can remember. 

The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Identity, Bourne Supremacy, Bourne Ultimatum, Mission Impossible III, Out for Justice,  The Hunted, 300 ,  The Book of Eli, The Perfect Weapon, Enter the Dragon, Game of Death, Star Wars ep2, Daredevil, Taken and more to come…


 It’s not only the film industry that has given attention to FMA, also has television given it some air time. In many ways, in just tv series like Burn Notice, Criminal Minds and Chuck to name a few.  Both History Channel and Discovery had two programs that was about martial arts, they visit the Philippines to try some FMA training and then later they sparred against a good opponent. 
Burn Notice wich is one of my favorite programs, is really cool in general. It’s about a burn spy who tries to get in again. It’s like Macgyver, but way much cooler in my opinion.

Tv documentaries

As I mention before, both History channel and Discovery channel had two programs about martial arts. I must say that both the programs managed to be very respectful to everyone the visit. I have seen shows that has been disrespectful against some arts that they have tried. I think they did a good job when they were visiting the Senseis, Grandmasters and Guros ”home”, even though they sometimes didn’t get back the same respect that they showed in the beginning.
If you can remember, a couple of years ago, BBC did a similar program to Human Weapon(Hw) and Fight Quest(FQ). The host did not fight as they did on HW and FQ, but he did travel around Asia to try out and meet Guros, Senseis, Grandmasters and Sifus and their respective arts. So every program they had some different styles to show, some Filipino stuff, some chinese and so on. It was at that time a really good program. I would still say it’s a good program but I like more what Human Weapon and Fight Quest did.

Human Weapon

Fight Quest

Mind, Body and Kick Ass Moves

DVD documentaries

 It’s really fun that there is coming documentaries about the Filipino Martial Arts really often now. When the Philipines was under Spain’s governing, they had to keep their training a secret and that led to minimal if none documentation. The only documentation of the arts we still have is there dances and theaters that the Spaniard like to watch. Since Spain got their ass whooped due to their indigenous fighting arts they forbid the Filipino to practice it. If like to know more, buy one or all the documentaries down here.

Voices of the masters and The Bladed Hand is documentaries that has not been released yet, last I heard was that The Bladed Hand is going to be released in 2011. Voices of the masters I do not know when they release it, hopefully soon.  From the previews it looks like they have spent some time and money to make this a good movie. Let’s hope it meets the expectation that they set with the trailer…

Unfortunately I haven’t seen any of Grandfathers speak, but I think this will be something that I am going to add to my Collection. Eskrimadors and Kali means to Scrape is two documentaries that I have seen. They are both very good, Eskrimadors is produced and filmed very well, but I must say I liked Kali Means to Scrape more. I can’t really put my fingered on why. But don’t get me wrong, Eskrimadors is really good as well.
In both Eskrimadors and Kali means to Scrape they sought out known and unknown instructors and let them tell their stories. What I liked in the Kali movie was that they interviewed people who had been in real blade encounters, it was very interesting to listen to their story.

Voices of the masters

Kali means to Scrape


The bladed hand

The grandfahter speaks 1 & 2

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