"SUPERCOP: 2-Disc Ultimate Edition"
by Kevin Carr
|| MOVIE: ***1/2 (out of 5 stars)
DVD EXPERIENCE: *** (out of 5 stars)
Jackie Chan as CHAN KA KUI
Michelle Yeoh as JESSICA YANG
Maggie Cheung as MAY
Ken Tsang as CHAIBAT
Wah Yuen as PANTHER
Bill Tung as ‘UNCLE” BILL WONG
Studio: Dragon Dynasty
Directed by: Stanley Tong
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About fifteen years ago, I worked with a good friend who was from Indonesia. He was a huge fan of the Hong Kong action films, and it was right when Jackie Chan was making his break into the American market. I mentioned to my friend back then that I was interested in seeing “Supercop,” which was being rolled into the American theaters.
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My friend then went on and on about how great the Jackie Chan films were and how “Supercop” was really the third film in a series from Hong Kong. Not having seen too many films from the Asian market, I was found myself introduced to the way these movies are brought across the ocean.
Now, “Supercop” is getting a two-disc “Ultimate Edition” release on DVD, and it’s nice to see the filmmakers and stars discuss on the special features this third film’s release into the American market.
“Supercop” follows a crack Hong Kong detective named Chan Ka Kui (Jackie Chan) as he’s tries to track down a drug dealer’s contacts by going undercover. Chan breaks the dealer out of a prison camp and, with the help of Chinese agent Jessica Yang (Michelle Yeoh), he pretends to be his friend in order to be led to the drug kingpin.
The most impressive thing about “Supercop” is the fact that both Jackie Chan and Michelle Yeoh do their own stunts. Even though it was produced in the 1990s, the digital effects aren’t as infused into the film, so all the action is real and practical. It’s a blast to watch the action sequences, which offer more than just hand-to-hand martial arts.
As a big, fat American couch potato, it’s easy to dismiss this movie because it’s not as grand in scope as the big summer blockbusters we see today... or even the ones we saw in the mid-1990s. However, you have to watch this movie remembering its context as the biggest Hong Kong movie at the time.
“Supercop” is Hong Kong’s answer to James Bond, and Jackie Chan brings his familiar and friendly comic sensibilities to the movie. Ironically, only a few years later, Michelle Yeoh would become the first Asian lead Bond girl since “You Only Live Twice.” The story isn’t all that strong, but that’s not the point of the film.
“Supercop” is a fun dose of mid-90s action and martial arts. It was made when Jackie Chan was a relatively unknown to American audiences but a huge star in his own country. He still delivers his kung fu with the same amount of energy.
The two-disc edition recently released on DVD includes a commentary track by Hong Kong cinema expert Bey Logan on the feature disc. The bonus disc includes long-form interviews with various members of the cast and crew. Both Jackie Chan and Michelle Yeoh reflect upon working on the film while the director, Stanley Tong, also gives his thoughts. Finally, Ken Lo (Jackie Chan’s bodyguard and training partner) gives a half hour of his insights, albeit in Chinese with subtitles.