Heart of Dragon
AKA: First Mission
Director: Sammo Hung
Stars: Sammo Hung, Jackie Chan, Lam Ching-Ying, Emily Chu, Dick Wei, Yuen Biao
Jackie Chan plays a cop torn between taking his dream job aboard a ship and staying to take care of his semi-retarded brother (Hung). Things get a bit more complicated when Hung inadvertently steals some Triads' loot and the gang (led by Dick Wei) seeks revenge.
If you're expecting a slam-bang action movie in the vein of Chan and Hung's other movies where they teamed up (like Dragons Forever), you may be disappointed. The majority of the movie is a serious drama as Chan tries to help out his brother -- there's even a part where Chan breaks down into tears. However, both Chan and Hung do a good job and it makes the story believable. The supporting cast also does well: Emily Chu plays Chan's long-suffering girlfriend, Lam Ching-Ying is Chan's captain and Yuen Biao has a small role as one of Chan's cop buddies.
Action and martial arts fans don't need to fret too much, though. The last half-hour of the movie is jam-packed with action. It almost seems a bit out of place, but hey, I'll take a Sammo Hung-directed Jackie Chan action sequence any day of the week. Heart of Dragon's only big misstep is its ending -- it's done with a musical montage which seems to be so popular in HK films. It really wraps up nothing and feels more tacked-on rather than a proper ending.
Note: the Japanese version actually has a couple more action sequences. You can see part of these in the Jackie Chan documentary Jackie Chan: My Story.
Click here to view the trailer for this movie (clip courtesy of Aloho's Video Page)
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