Get any group of Jackie Chan fans together, and its likely they won’t be able to come anywhere close to a consensus when it comes to picking their favorite Action extravaganza featuring the Hong Kong movie legend. You’ll have some that will argue for his more old-school entries, like the original Drunken Master, and then a lot of voices will probably be raised in favor of the more modern sequel (Drunken Master II), released in this country as Legend of the Drunken Master. Then again, therell always be a contingent that will stand by Jackie’s more stunt-oriented work, most notably anything in the Police Story franchise, all five of which are prime showcases for the star’s unique and unforgettable action prowess. Even picking the best of that franchise would be a tough prospect, but if one were looking for sheer volume of straight up stunts and insanity, it would be hard to bet against the third movie in the franchise, released in the U.S. as Supercop.
Much like Rocky III or Goldfinger, everything absolutely clicks when it comes to the movie’s winning formula. You’ve got Jackie playing his most prolific role, Inspector Ka Kui Chan. You also get the usual array of fantastic fight scenes, several even taking place on top of a moving train where it seems like the smallest slip could cost Chan his life, and then finally there are the film’s unbelievable stunts. Jackie’s stuntwork is usually pretty extreme, and here he doesn’t disappoint. As he’s done time and again, Chan seems to throw caution completely to the wind, whether hanging from zip lines or rope ladders hundreds of feet in the air, or narrowly missing explosions or head on collisions with locomotives.
As would have always been the case during this period in his career, Mr. Chan also forgoes stuntmen when it came to these incredible feats, making the danger feel more real, and the action as intense as possible. This is heightened even more knowing how new a lot of the safety measures for this film were at the time of its production, putting Jackie in real danger if even the slightest thing were to go wrong. Thankfully, nothing as catastrophic as Chan’s near-death experience on Armor of God ever took place on this film.
Another factor boosting the entertainment value of this movie is the incredible performance by fan favorite Michelle Yeoh, playing an inspector from mainland China who goes undercover with Ka Kui in order to bring down an outfit of drug dealers. Yeoh gets in her own amazing stunt sequences, most notably a jaw dropping truck chase and also a CGI-free “motorcycle ramps onto train” scene that is absolutely mind-blowing. To top it off, she also gets plenty of screen fights in as well, matching Jackie blow for blow with incredible grace as she puts down the bad guys with her dancer-like moves. This would be one of the roles, along with her turns in 1993’s Heroic Trio and 94’s Wing Chun that would blast her into superstardom in Hong Kong, and eventually gave her some exposure in the U.S. even before her characters in Tomorrow Never Dies and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon made her a minor household name.
Supercop was one of Jackie’s biggest U.S. successes after finally breaking through to American audiences with Rumble in the Bronx in the early ’90s, but up until this point, the only available edition was the dubbed version that appeared in the theaters during that time period. Thankfully, because of the Weinstein Company’s Dragon Dynasty line, the film is finally being released uncut, with its original score and language track for the first time in America. While many may not care what language the movie is in, this actually adds quite a bit to the performances, especially Yeoh’s and that of Maggie Cheung, who plays May, Kai Kui’s girlfriend in the picture. Both actresses now get to emote in their native languages and don’t have to rely on other actress to do their voicework.
The movie is straight up one of Jackie Chan’s greatest accomplishments on screen. While the great effort to put this movie together is visible onscreen, what’s effortless is Chan’s ability to entertain with his goofball antics and his amazing physical skills. Whether keeping us in awe with his fisticuffs or his stuntwork or making us fall out of chairs laughing, Chan is a true treasure onscreen, and this is one of his best moments.
Ive seen several versions of this movie on DVD, including the original Dimension release, as well as a Media Asia version from Hong Kong, and this is without a doubt the best print available of this movie. This is a gorgeous DVD image with some really good picture detail and great work done to enhance the movies colors and clarity.
Also, as Ive said before, its awesome to finally be able to hear the original language track, and in addition we actually get a stereo version of the track that hadnt been previously available. So not only do you get a previously unreleased voice track, you get it in the highest quality possible.
Flying High: An Exclusive Interview With Star Jackie Chan – An amazing interview with Jackie Chan, the star touches on several aspects of this production, including things such the popularity of the Police Story films, the recruitment of director Stanley Tong, and the cutting and re-editing of his films by American studios. This is a very worthwhile interview with perhaps Hong Kongs biggest screen legend.
Dancing With Death: An Interview With Leading Lady Michelle Yeoh – Yeoh talks a lot about her background here, dishing on her career in dance and how that evolved into an acting career. With her dance training helping her out immensely, Yeoh was able to become the biggest female Action star in Hong Kong, a title she probably still owns today.
The Stuntmaster General: An Exclusive Interview With Director Stanley Tong – The director goes in deep about his relationship with Jackie Chan and how its a big give and take situation with Chan, because the star is a veteran director himself. Chan had actually directed the first two installments of this series, so its interesting that Chan would give up those reigns in order to work with Tong, but the results speak for themselves.
The Fall Guy: An Exclusive Interview With Co-Star And Jackie Chan Bodyguard And Training Partner Ken Lo – Lo, the man partly responsible for Jackies greatest screen fight ever in Drunken Master II, waxes poetic about his history with Jackie and how their friendship has grown over the years, from Lo simply being his bodyguard, to being his close friend and fellow screen performer. This is another great interview on this disc, with a lot of frank info about Jackies influence over Los life.
Commentary By Hong Kong Cinema Expert Bey Logan – Fans of these Dragon Dynasty titles should be used to the incredible commentaries by Bey Logan, and here he does not disappoint. Again you get wall to wall info about this movie, as Logan talks about every single element of this movie and how its production went down. Logan is like a one-man Hong Kong movie library, and here he shares his knowledge in full.
If it’s not the best, Supercop is one of the five best Jackie Chan movies ever made. With nonstop laughs, fights and eye-popping stunts, the star gives it his all here. If youre looking to see why Jackie Chan has stayed being so popular for so long, look no further than Supercop.
Dragon Dynasty presents Supercop. Directed by Stanley Tong. Starring Jackie Chan and Michelle Yeoh. Written by Edward Tang, and, Fibe Ma, and
Lee Wai Yee. Running time: 95 minutes. Rated R. Released on DVD: Jan 13, 2009. Available at Amazon.
Tags: Jackie Chan