Watched a few movies this weekend. All starred Jackie Chan, but two were good and the other was not. The first movie was the one that wasn’t any good. City Hunter is about a private eye who ends up fighting terrorists on a cruise ship after tailing the girl he was supposed to find on board. Sounds like your average action/martial arts film, yes? The difference was that this movie was awful. So awful that let us never speak of it again.
Second was a somewhat early Jackie Chan movie, The Young Master. It wasn’t too bad. The fighting was very stylised, like most kung-fu movies of that period and very dissimilar from his later roles. There aren’t really any spectacular stunts like he worked into his later movies, but the fighting is impressive and it’s obvious that he had a great deal more flexibility and agility at this younger age compared to his more recent outings. (No surprise, he was a mere 26 in this film, compared to 49 when his last American hit, Shanghai Knights, was released.)
Finally, I watched The Legend of Drunken Master, which was, I believe, the second of about four in a series. This was the only one of which I am aware that was released to theaters in the US. It’s got some good fights, a few neat stunts and the plot isn’t abysmally awful, though there are several moments of preachiness about how China has to defend itself from those evil foreigners who want only to degrade and hold back China. All in all, not a bad Jackie Chan flick.