Police Story (1985)
Police Story (1985)

Genre: Action Comedy and Martial Arts Running Time: 1 hr. 41 min.

Release Date: December 14th, 1985 MPAA Rating: PG-13

Director: Jackie Chan, Chi-Hwa Chen Actors: Jackie Chan, Maggie Cheung, Brigette Lin, Kwok-Hung Lam, Bill Tung, Yuen Chor, Charlie Cho, Chi-Wing Lau

 


 

D

etective Sergeant Chan Ka Kui (Jackie Chan, who is simply called Jackie Chan during the English dubbing) is just one member of a police task force set up to tackle the Joe Chu organized crime ring. But, he’s clearly the best. The drug syndicate consists of Chu’s relatives and colleagues, including nephew Danny Chu, right-hand-man “Psycho” Wing, and secretary Selina Fong (Brigette Lin) – among a horde of dispensable foot-soldiers. Dubbed Operation Wild Boar, the roundup proves to be far more challenging than initially anticipated.

Starting off in a Hong Kong shantytown, the squadron is outnumbered and outgunned – made worse by Tom (Kent Tong), an agent so inexperienced and unprepared that he soils himself during the ensuing shootout. Perhaps most notable about this sequence is the car chase down a hill, which demolishes the entire village in the process – an explosive, memorable stunt that is completely stolen by “Bad Boys II” many years later, to a shocking degree. But the excitement doesn’t stop there; mere seconds later, Chan pursues a hijacked bus and latches onto it with an umbrella, dangling from the window before forcing it to come to a halt with such force that the bad guys are launched through the windshield.

Though the plot is the typical tale of a mob boss and his limitless supply of henchmen sent to test Chan’s martial arts abilities, there are quite a few subplots designed specifically for comic relief. When the superintendent devises a ploy to lure Chu’s goons out (by turning the bailed Selina into a witness for the prosecution), Chan becomes her personal bodyguard for 24 hours, making room for staged threats, real attacks, birthday party surprises gone awry, jealous spats, and several pies in the face. Slapstick and Three Stooges antics crop up quite frequently, as is common in Jackie Chan’s humor-laden brand of action. Adding to the running time is a touch of drama, too, in the form of a frame job and a hostage scenario (the kind that would ruin a career in the force for anyone other than Chan).

Although the blend of whimsy and adventure swings more toward the former than the latter (a courtroom sequence is both hysterical and completely unbelievable in its admittance of evidence), Chan’s signature stunt choreography is no less impressive. Several of the fights contain some incredibly heavy-hitting exploits – ones so intense, it’s a wonder the actors didn’t die in the process (particularly with the falls from high places). But there are also the lighter moments, where props are used extensively to generate thrilling obstacles for the combatants to fall across, clamor over, or crash through. And in this action fantasy, vigilante justice is satisfyingly served up with relish at the slam-bang finale.

– Mike Massie

  • 6/10