Ip Man Archetypes

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The movie, Ip Man, directed by Wilson Yip presents the martyr archetype by showing Ip Man as a martyr, which enhances the themes of Chinese resilience and resistance against the Japanese occupation, and the Chinese people’s fight against the Japanese. The film is based on the life of Chinese martial artist Ip Man, or Yip Man, staring out by establishing Yip Man’s prowess, Director Yip depicts Yip Man defeating a northern challenger seeking to establish his own martial arts school. Once the Japanese invade, Yip Man loses his house and is forced to live in a tenement and work at a coal mine, run by the Japanese, as a means of getting food for his family. The Japanese general, Miura, offers extra bags of rice for fights against his black belts,…show more content…
The first instance of the martyr archetype is presented in the film is when Yip Man demonstrates his martial art prowess by defeating the northern challenger because it showed his ability to fight and thus, placed him in a position where he would be the one to fight the Japanese general. Also, it showed that he is a respected figure in his community because he defended the prestige of southern chinese martial arts. Although this scene doesn’t make Yip Man a martyr, it sets him up to become a martyr as he starts to fulfills the necessary characteristics of a martyr. The next scene that represents Yip man as a martyr, is when Yip Man defeats the 10 black belts because it that scene juxtaposes his martial arts ability to other martial artists in Foshan. The scene depicts another martial arts master, Liu, being beaten by 3 bleack belts, which then shows Yip Man defeating 10. Thus, Yip Man shows that because he has the most well suited to take on the Japanese he becomes the leader, much like how other martyrs such as Martin Luther King Jr were the most suited to deal with their problems, which in his case was segregation. Yip Man becomes the martyr when he fights Japanese general
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