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"BEIMO"
a Wing Chun Short Film

Featuring Authentic Wing Chun and co-staring Sifu Gary Lam.

BEIMO

Chow is a teenage street fighter in 1950s Hong Kong. Scarred by the memory of his parent's murder at the hands of Japanese soldiers during the WW2 invasion of China, Chow is about to face his biggest challenge: A fight with a Japanese street fighter.

The film is the first to feature semi-authentic Wing Chun vs. Kyokushin Karate in a cinematic context.

Beimo was filmed in Cantonese for authenticity and subtitled in English.
 

Origin: USA
Length: 10 min
Studio(s): n/a
Director(s): Sheldon Wong SCHWARTZ
Producer(s): Sheldon Wong SCHWARTZ
Action Director(s): Kerry WONG (stunts)
Writer(s): Sheldon Wong SCHWARTZ (script)
Cinematographer(s): Sheldon Wong SCHWARTZ
Music: n/a
Rated: NR - strong violence, brief language
Cast:

Johnny YU ... Chow
George Kee CHEUNG ... Pastor Cheung
Annie TANG ... Chow's mother
Gary LAM ... Sifu Lee
Kerry WONG ... Japanese fighter
John NOBORI ... Weak fighter
Jason CHOW ... Bully
Jeremy WAN ... Young Chow
Andy LI ... Chow's father
HOUN Leang  ... Japanese soldier

 

Places to see the film:  The Wing Chun Archive (320x240 streaming - be patient)

You Tube (streaming)    What the Film (78mb download)


 

WCA Interview with Director Sheldon Wong Schwartz:


After I found out about this great little movie (why did it take me so long?) I immediately contacted the director Sheldon Schwartz to find out more about it, and his Wing Chun training.  Personally, I want to be making movies myself, so finding this little gem was a real treat for me.

the Wing Chun Archive (WCA): Sheldon, with your permission I'd like to feature your film on my site.  I think it is a wonderful short film, and am excited to see Wing Chun in a cinematic setting once again.  Can you tell me a little about your Wing Chun training and other interests?

Sheldon Schwartz (SS):
Thanks for putting it on your site!! I can't believe people are actually taking a liking to my little film. I expected it to be a little too religious for most people, but I guess I was wrong.

I filmed Beimo after finishing 7 months of consistent intensive training in WC. My teacher is Sifu Gary Lam. You can visit his site at http://www.garylamwingchun.com

My interest in WC comes from my stepfather, whom I call Uncle George, who was a student under Wong Shun Leung (WSL) as a child (who also taught Sifu Gary). Uncle George would show me WC moves here and there as I was growing up, and I was always amazed at the speed, explosiveness (and painfulness) of his demonstrations.

Finding out that Bruce Lee was also taught by WSL, I decided to make it goal to gain proficiency in WC someday. Uncle George recommended Sifu Gary, and the rest is history.

I love the idea of connecting genres to make something that would otherwise be exploitative (Kung Fu for the sake of Kung Fu), substantial (Kung Fu to communicate a message). This was why I made Beimo.

WCA: This being a Wing Chun site my questions will focus more on that aspect of your interests. So what is your favorite Wing Chun book?

SS: My favorite wing chun book would probably be the Tao of JKD (If that qualifies). since I really think it grabs the essence of WC. Whatever the disagreements over lineage and superiority may be right now, WC was meant to be an efficient martial art by its very definition. I think Bruce Lee's book takes this idea down a good path.

WCA: I agree, and yes that qualifies.  There is more Wing Chun is Bruce Lee's early works than most Wing Chun books... In my humble, but accurate, opinion. :)  And your favorite Wing Chun Movie?

SS:  My favorite WC movie (there aren't many to choose from) is definitely the Prodigal Son. I loved the way you could see WC, as presented in the movie, played out in the fight scenes.

WCA: What are your goals in the area of film?

SS:  My goal in film is to make movies that communicate good messages. I hope that one day I get to make a film that really impacts the way my viewers look at reality for the better. We don't have that in Hollywood anymore; I hope I'm the lucky one who gets to bring that back someday. If its not me, kudos to the person that does.

WCA:  Are you done with your Wing Chun training?

SS:  I'm done with WC for now. I have to go to law school and start my production company. This takes a lot of time!

WCA:  Tell me about it.  It is hard to find the time to focus on training and have any other side projects at all, much less Law School and running a business.  Do you think we'll ever see any more Wing Chun in your films?

SS:  I want to make a romantic comedy/coming-of-age-flick about a nerdy computer programmer who learns WC and becomes popular after beating up a bunch of guys at a bullshido.com-style throw-down. He meets his first girlfriend that way.    

WCA:  That sounds great, I can't wait.  I'm curios to know if you are Christian and if that was part of the basis for the film. I'm no expert, but I didn't think there were many Chinese Christians in the 1930's and 40's, so I was wandering about that.

SS: Yes, I'm a Christian. I'm actually half-Jewish/half-Chinese. Yes, I wanted to express an aspect of my faith that everyone could relate to: Forgiveness

WCA:  You did that and did it well.  Good job.  Well, I'm not one big on interviews, so thanks, for your time Sheldon. 

If you have would like to see more of Sheldon's work, please visit his website:
What The Film.  If you contact Sheldon, please let him know you saw his film here on the Wing chun Archive.  Train Hard!  A

 

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