Yeah Vanguard really stuck with me so I figured why not see some more.
Believe it or not this movie has been on the review calendar several times but always got pushed back, but I finally saw it and while it was admittedly different from the few Jackie Chan movies I've seen I still really enjoyed it. It's much more a comedy film first with action peppered here and there, and if that turns you off it I still very much urge you to see it for yourself. The plot follows two friends who run a food truck in Spain who get swept up in this kidnapping plot by a bit bumbling detective, as they meet a woman with a penchant for pickpocketing among other characters. Now I will fully say the comedy even for me took me about 20 minutes into the film to really grasp, obviously I haven't seen many comedy movies in the 1980s from China but once I got it, the movie made me laugh a fair bit but even when I wasn't laughing I still had a smile on my face. I was pretty shocked to see the story unfold in Spain, Barcelona to be exact so it really just goes to show Vanguard wasn't the one and only to do such a thing. But the locations look nice and the production while obviously not top tier in terms of budget still gets a lot done and in no small feat for the choreography. It's good old classic martial arts fighting, with guys flying across the room from a hit, that instantly recognizable steak punching sound effect, and some neat-o camera work just for the fun of it. Again, it really isn't wall to wall action but at the same time I didn't have any issue with that because the fights were still engaging and entertaining. Hell I would almost go on record and say for a fact that the fighting was kept to a minimum so you really get your full money's worth with the fight between Jackie and Benny The Jet. Holy hot damn it has been a minute since I've seen a fight that good, no it's not even a fight. It's a duel. It's a duel of high skill and raw power that will probably be replaying in my head for the rest of the day. I wouldn't even be surprised if they said they didn't do much choreography for it and just filmed it like if it was a tournament match, it feels that organic and unscripted. If you had reservations watching this movie, chances are those dissipated while that fight was going on. I'm quite certain this is the first Sammo Hung directed movie I've seen, though I've seen him as one of the martial arts masters in Ip Man 2, and while it is an unashamedly 80s piece of foreign actiony cinema I really liked how he did it all. The slow motion, the unique camera placement for certain shots, the editing, it worked very well for me. Also have to give a nod to the music, it got funky and even had a montage song like any true 80s classic. It's a fun movie with a caper plot, and it's cool to see Jackie in one of his older roles. I give it 3 stars, 7.5/10, good times be found here. Tomorrow we jump closer to the 90s with another Sammo Hung directed film.