The Legend Of Drunken Master

"OK"

The Legend Of Drunken Master Review


Widely considered Jackie Chan's best movie, "The Legend of Drunken Master" (released to the rest of the world in 1994 as "Drunken Master II") features what are arguably the fastest, most furious and elaborate -- and the most entertaining -- fight sequences ever filmed.

Chan plays a fictionalized version of Wong Fei-Hung, a real martial arts master and philosophical altruist in the early 1900s who, legend has it, once defeated a gang of 30 men single-handedly, armed only with a bamboo staff.

That skirmish is, of course, recreated in "Drunken Master" as a kinetic, highly concentrated blur of acrobatics and lightning-fast limbs as two dozen toughs invade a quiet restaurant, forcing Jackie to whip them all silly with flying fists and feet, upside-down wooden tables and cheer-rousing picnic bench-fu.

With half a dozen scenes of this nature -- each one better than the last -- the movie just never slows down. Yet "Drunken Master" also has the most meaningful plot of any Jackie Chan picture to date. It's about the Chinese trying to prevent colonial European smugglers from exporting en masse their nation's archeological treasures.In the picture, Chan's Fei-Hung is the mischievous son of a renowned doctor and martial arts instructor. Much of the movie's obligatory highjinks involve deceiving the old man to cover up the fact that Fei-Hung has inadvertently provoked the wrath of the villain, an embassy henchman played by Ken Lo, a champion kick-boxer.

The jaw-dropping climactic steel-factory showdown between these two puts the effects-heavy bouts in "The Matrix" to shame. With a connect rate of about 50 landed punches per minute, it took four months to shoot and features everything from kicks so fast the camera can't see them clearly to Jackie Chan being knocked onto a bed of burning coals -- and you know he doesn't fake that stuff!

The film gets its name from an informal fighting style that emulates (and is sometimes enhanced by) inebriation. Sloshing and stumbling about to confuse his opponents and striking from surprising positions, Chan plays this peculiar kung-fu for both action and laughs (booze is to Fei-Hung what spinach is to Popeye).

"The Legend of Drunken Master" is burdened somewhat by the routine weaknesses of most Jackie Chan movies: bad dubbing of dumb dialogue, subservient and stereotypically fussy female leads, etc. But forgiving all that, as any true Jackie Chan fan does, you simply cannot find a more exhilarating, eye-popping martial arts flick.

The opening credits say it all: "A Hong Kong Stuntman Association Ltd. Production." The stunt men produced the movie!

A note to ratings-watchers: "Drunken Master" got slapped with an unjustified "R" for its moderate violence. If your kids are Jackie Chan fans, there's no reason to keep them away from this one.



The Legend Of Drunken Master

Facts and Figures

Run time: 102 mins

In Theaters: Friday 20th October 2000

Box Office USA: $9.7M

Distributed by: Dimension Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Fresh: 62 Rotten: 13

IMDB: 7.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Wong Fei-hung, as Wong Kei-ying, as Mrs. Wong, Felix Wong as Tsang, Liu Chia-Liang as Master Fu Wen-Chi (as Lau Kar-Leung), as John (as Low Houi Kang), Chin Ka-Lok as Ho Sang (as Chin Ka Lok), Ho-Sung Pak as Henry, Cheung Chi-Gwong as Tso (as Tseung Chi Kwong), Yee San Hon as Uncle Hing (as Hon Yee Sang), as Counter Intelligence Officer, as Fun, Chia Yung Liu as Marlon (as Kar Yung Lau), Lau Siu-Ming as Mr. Chiu, Suki Kwan as Chiu's Wife

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Trumbo Movie Review

Trumbo Movie Review

An entertaining film about sobering true events, this is the story of notorious screenwriter Dalton...

Goosebumps Movie Review

Goosebumps Movie Review

Mixing the action, comedy and horror from novelist R.L. Stein's books into a family-friendly package,...

Dad's Army Movie Review

Dad's Army Movie Review

The beloved 1970s British sit-com gets the big screen treatment, although there's been very little...

Spotlight Movie Review

Spotlight Movie Review

This film demonstrates that you don't need guns to make an exciting thriller. Based on...

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

Not the subtlest director working in Hollywood, Michael Bay brings his surging machismo to this...

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find...

The Big Short Movie Review

The Big Short Movie Review

Smart and snappy, this comedy is one of the scariest films of the year, using...

Advertisement
The 5th Wave Movie Review

The 5th Wave Movie Review

Also based on the first in a trilogy of post-apocalyptic teen novels, this thriller feels...

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ice Cube and Kevin Hart reteam for a sequel no one really asked for, following...

Room Movie Review

Room Movie Review

One of the most extraordinary films of the year, this drama cleverly weaves in events...

Creed Movie Review

Creed Movie Review

While this film is basically Rocky VII, it's also much more than that, and perhaps...

A Perfect Day Movie Review

A Perfect Day Movie Review

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an...

Partisan Movie Review

Partisan Movie Review

With his feature debut, young Australian filmmaker Ariel Kleiman tells a creepy story about a...

The Revenant Movie Review

The Revenant Movie Review

A wrenching saga of survival and revenge, Alejandro G. Inarritu's new epic is just as...

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

Quentin Tarantino is a filmmaker who simply can't be ignored, especially when he lobs a...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.