Friday, February 12, 2016

Supercop (1992)


In 1995 Rumble in the Bronx unleashed Jackie Chan on an ignorant North American audience. And those of us that liked it wanted more. So Miramax was quick to respond by grabbing another Jackie Chan film directed by Stanley Tong. But it was an older movie, part of a series called Police Story. In fact this was the third installment. But hell, that didn’t matter. Just rename it, get Devo to sing the end title song and rename his character Kevin the Supercop and you’ve got movie gold! Right? Tell me I’m right.


Drugs are flooding into Hong Kong and “what we need is a Supercop and we need one now!” So Kevin (Jackie Chan) is dispatched to discover and stop the source of the drugs. This takes him to China where he is teamed with Inspector Yang (Michelle Yeoh) a no-nonsense officer whose skill are a perfect match for Kevin’s. They come up with a mission that puts Kevin undercover and working with a man called Panther (Wah Yuen). Panther’s drug connections lead them to Malaysia.

It’s there where things get tricky because Panther is only the second in command. The ruthless Chaibat (Kenneth Tsang) has started a war with other organized crime groups in Southeast Asia and things get out of hand very quickly. Kevin and Yang will find themselves escaping a coalmine, fighting angry police officers, dodging bullets and missiles, and even attempting to land a motorcycle on a moving train (yeah Michelle Yeoh is just as crazy as Jackie Chan). But will all these heroics (by not one Supercop, but two) be enough to stop Chaibat?

Good Points:

  • Some amazing stunt work by Chan, Yeoh and the stunt crew
  • Hilariously bad dubbing and dub script
  • Michelle Yeoh pretty much steals the movie from everyone

Bad Points:

  • The plot seems like a less coherent James Bond clone
  • Lots and lots of gunfire and explosions, less physical action
  • Some of the intentional humor doesn’t quite work


While the plot is over convoluted and less jokey Supercop (also known as Police Story 3) still delivers the entertainment. Plenty of impressive and well filmed stunts and action scenes will keep you engaged. But the extended battle in the jungle goes gun crazy and loses some steam. Luckily, the lovely Maggie Cheung shows up for some silly screwball comedy as Kevin’s girlfriend who is clueless about his mission. The finale involving a helicopter, a moving train and a motorcycle is some of the most impressive stunt work I’ve ever seen. Michelle Yeoh makes for a great partner with Chan and while the movie is less fun then Rumble in the Bronx it is well worth checking out.

Scores (out of 5)
Visuals: 4
Sound: 3
Acting: 3
Script: 2
Music: 3
Direction: 3
Entertainment: 3
Total:  3

Next time Michelle wants to bum a ride, make sure
she actually gets into the car.

Curious about a full review, sent me an email and I’ll make additional thoughts to this review.

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  1. I haven't seen this one, but with a Jackie Chan movie -- as with, say Steven Seagal or Chuck Norris movies -- you pretty much know what to expect. Chan is better than those other two, of course, both in skill and humor. It sounds as though Michelle Yeoh is the real bonus here.

    1. Yeah it is worth seeing to watch Michelle Yeoh kick butt and interact with Chan and Maggie Cheung. The finale sequence is really impressive as well. According to the stories the motorcycle jump sequence broke a stuntwoman's leg, but Yeoh went for it anyway and pulled it off!

  2. I have not seen a lot of Chan's earlier movies, though if I ran across them on TV I'd give them a watch. It seems he came in on the ending cycle of action heroes (though they still have that genre). There was a time though where several actors got popular doing such roles like Segal, etc. I was a fan of some of those films, but started to feel like they were getting pumped out too often and in doing so became sort of disposable. You could always count on some car chase, and some gun battles where automatic weapons would take place (the main actor avoiding all those bullets).

    With Chan I started to see the formula a bit more apparent, and they'd come up with a concept and just plug him into the story. He was versatile enough to add some humor and choreography into the mix so that helped.

    1. Yeah he came in near the end of that action movie cycle (See my Nostalgia Nugget post about that experience from the video store clerk's point of view). Chan gave everything a fresh coat of paint with his creative choreography and humorous slant on things. Stallone, Schwarzenegger and Segal were all so grim and serious. But Chan always brought some laughs to the table.