Jackie Chan Double Feature - Police Story / Police Story II (Blu-Ray)
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Police Story: Action superstar Jackie Chan is Chan Ka Kui, a cop on the run from a false murder charge in this showcase of electrifying full-contact fight scenes and death defying stunts! Hard-hitting and innovative, Police Story set a new standard in action filmmaking and is many believe it is one of the greatest martial arts movies ever released! Police Story 2: In the sequel to 1985 classic, Chan Ka Kui�s (Jackie Chan) unorthodox approach to police work gets him demoted to traffic officer. When a mob boss he arrested is released from prison seeking revenge, Chan must protect himself and his girlfriend (Maggie Cheung) and bring the criminals to justice. The story culminates in an explosive finale which combines incredible fights, death-defying stunts and outrageous slapstick that has made Chan a legend.
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After revisiting "Police Story," there definitely doesn't seem to be much of any new material in the cut of the feature film. However, there are quite a few bonus features that may whet your appetite. There are a little over two minutes of Deleted Scenes that are mostly just an extra few frames here and there, an Alternate Ending that is mostly an extra 30-45 seconds compared to the original ending with some outtakes attached, an Extended Opening that revolves around Chan Ka Kui arriving to the police station from training and Kim's birthday, and the US and Hong Kong trailers. "Police Story 2" is much lighter on special features with two minutes of Outtakes, an International Trailer, the Original Hong Kong Trailer, and three minutes of Alternate Outtakes.
You're probably wondering about how the film looks. In comparison to the DVDs, "Police Story" is a noticeable improvement and yet isn't quite as high-definition as you might expect. The picture is certainly brighter and clearer, but still looks slightly grainy and saturated. Yet it's still the best this film has ever looked. The sound is superb though. Even without surround sound, you can hear the score of the film clear across the room. "Police Story 2" is the same cut as the DVD as well, but the restoration is much more noticeable since the picture is so crisp and clear and the sound is just as impressive as it is in "Police Story" on this disc.
"Police Story" itself is one of Jackie Chan's best. The pole slide sequence at the very end is what always makes highlight reels, but the entire mall fight is really impressive. There's a good chunk in the middle of "Police Story" that is overly goofy with lame innuendos, misunderstandings, getting caught in lies, and May jumping to conclusions by usually getting upset for all the wrong reasons. The last 30 minutes or so are outstanding as is the opening squatter hut sequence and the parking lot fight. "Police Story 2" is a bit more serious and much more explosive. There are three of the greatest explosions put to film in "Police Story 2." The cafe fight, scuffle in the park, and battle at the fireworks factory should make this sequel worth adding to your collection if it hasn't been added to it already.
Both films are available in English 5.1, Cantonese 5.1, and Cantonese Mono DTS-HD Master Audio sound. You typically have the option of multi-channel or two-channel sound in each language (two settings for each language, so four total). The only subtitles that are available are in English. The films are also presented in widescreen with a 2.35:1 aspect ratio.
There isn't much of anything new to this combo pack of "Police Story" and "Police Story 2," but the fairly affordable price, getting two of Jackie Chan's most entertaining films on one disc, and being able to own both these films in high-definition should at least make you consider double dipping for this great collection.
About the films, the original Police Story (1985) is really good, action and story wise. In the first part, we are introduced to policeman Chan Ka Kui (Jackie Chan) and his un-orthodox ways of catching criminals. The story deals with Chan trying to arrest notorious boss of the Hong Kong underworld who deals with drugs. The film is knows for Chan's last scene stunt, where he jumps on Christmas light-fixtures that are hanging few stories down in a shopping mall center and slides-down on them while in the process breaking all the light, which resulted in actual injury to his hands. I really enjoyed watching Police Story (1985), but did not expect Police Story 2 (1988) to be even better, much better. Police Story 2 is longer than the first part, and what is so good about the second part is that it is part, DRAMA, part POLICE ACTION. part COMEDY, part KUNG FU ACTION, part JAMES BOND ACTION...never have I seen a movie that had so many genres mashed in together. What is even more astonishing, is that all these components fit perfectly together, as a result making the second part one of the best Hong Kong action films I have ever watched. The only films that come even close to Police Story 2 are the films from the Mad Mission series, which interestingly were also shot in Hong Kong in the 1980's.
If you think Die Hard is the best action film from 1988, than watch Police Story 2. Jackie Chan makes Bruce Willis look like a girl scout.
April 8, 2013
Over the years I have met various film directors who claim they'd studied the film-making of Buster Keaton and had been influenced by Keaton's 1920s cinema-language defining work and mind-warping, eye-boggling stunts.
Keaton's superb timing and physical form leapt from the screen as if he defied gravity and mortal injury, with grace to spare.
Jackie Chan has been quoted that Buster Keaton was a major influence to him in many of his films.
SHOUT Factory has just released two of Jackie's Police Story movies on one Blu-Ray!
In Police Story, alone, if you are familiar with Keaton's work, you can see that in Jackie's case he wasn't just talking words.
I can find moments in Police Story and Police Story 2 where Jackie displays not only his incredible, balletic actions, but shows the influence of not just Buster Keaton, but also Douglas Fairbanks and Harold Lloyd's films from the 1920s.
To take nothing away from Lloyd, because he did do many of his own stunts, with fingers missing from one hand, blown off by a prop for a still photo shoot, but Harvey Parry did double Harold in the more dangerous stunts.
Jackie and Buster and Fairbanks did their own stunts.
And Fairbank's modus operandi was to make the most difficult stunt look easy.
You will see Jackie Chan do this again and again in Police Story 1 and 2.
This is the first time either of the Police Story films have been released on Blu Ray, a double-feature from Jackie's prime as a director and star. Shout has released them on DVD, also. You can't beat the price, even the Blu-Ray can be found for less than $20.00. The prints are the best I personally have ever seen, and although I am far from an expert on the films, they certainly appear to be uncut. It's hard to tell with many of Jackie's films because there have been so many versions of different lengths released over the years.
If you don't have any Jackie Chan on DVD, then this is an inexpensive way to own two of Jackie's most popular movies during the 1980s.
Police Story opens with one of Jackie's biggest-scale openings ever, a drug raid taking place in a hillside Shanty Town, with tiers of buildings scattered haphazardly down the long, steep mountainside. When the raid goes terribly awry within the first 5 minutes, Jackie is immediately in action. The chase for the drug-lord and his cohorts smashes by cars down the mountain-side, through the ramshackle buildings and bright red and yellow clotheslines and paraphernalia from store goods to furniture.
You can read the complete review at Comics Bulletin in my Riding Shotgun column, with photos.
I think I enjoy Police Story more than PS2, if only because of the mall fighting scenes. The pole slide is the wow factor in this film, in my opinion. The fighting is great and some of the stunts are incredible; wouldn't expect anything less though.
PS2, is a great flick as well. The wow factor in this one is the playground fight scene. I'll also throw in the fighting in the factory.
Again, if you are a fan of Jackie and his movies, then I wouldn't pass this collection up.