Crime Story (1993), Special Collector’s Edition

by | Aug 8, 2007 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Crime Story (1993), Special Collector’s Edition

Starring: Jackie Chan
Studio: Dragon Dynasty 80389
Video: Enhanced for 16:9 widescreen, color
Audio: Cantonese DD 5.1, English DD 5.1, Original Cantonese mono
Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
Extras: Deleted scenes, Commentary with Director Kirk Wong and Hong Kong film expert Bey Logan, “A Journey to the Underworld” – Interview with Director Wong, “From the Page to the Silver Screen” – Interview with Writer Teddy Chen, Trailer gallery
Length: 103 minutes
Rating: ****

This is not your usual Jackie Chan film, be warned. Yes, he does display a few semi-humorous kung fu moves on the baddies, but his role in this gritty drama is of a very serious police detective who has to see the force’s psychologist because he is so sensitive and troubled by the violence he is forced to do, even when it is against awful criminals bent on killing him. When a motorcycle cop is killed while Jackie is chasing some criminals he is completely broken up.

The kung fu classic  is based on a true incident in Hong Kong concerning a wealthy tycoon who has been kidnapped for ransom once before and has alerted the police that he is expecting it again. Confusingly, the billionaire is portrayed as an unfeeling ass who takes advantage of his workers. Sure enough, he is ambushed and kidnapped and it’s up to Jackie to solve the case.  His partner, of whom he eventually becomes suspicious, is little help and even an obstacle. The fight scenes really give you your money’s worth, as with most Hong Kong kung fu movies. It seems that a rather simple gunfight between two protagonists ends up destroying half of Hong Kong with crashed cars, destroyed furniture and windows, and buildings in fiery explosions everywhere.  Jackie ends up subjected to killer beatings, falls and what appear to be certain injuries (it’s hard not to laugh at him sometimes – but we don’t laugh when this happens to Bruce Willis…). This movie doesn’t end with footage of stunts that went wrong behind the closing titles, as with some of his others.

Though dated 1993, some of the police equipment looked much older – the cell phones were huge; perhaps they were walkie-talkies.  The transfer is OK, not great, and the 5.1 surround makes little use of surround possibilities – perhaps it was just derived from the original mono track of the film.

 – John Sunier

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