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Review City Hunter a.k.a. Sing si lip yan (1993): Wong Jing's take on Die Hard (on a ship)!

genre: comic book adaptation, comedy, martial arts, action

For old Jackie Chan fans like me City Hunter definitely felt very different from the films he usually made. Even for Jackie Chan this film is incredibly wacky and insane. However it is the zaniness and insanity that makes this film work still today (2020).

Mind you if you are expecting some serious hard hitting action like you are used to from Jackie then there is a possibility you will be disappointed. City Hunter is filled with good action scenes. Plenty of memorable fights and nice gun play brought into the mix. However it's all covered in a comedic style that won't be for everyone. This style is very typical for director Wong Jing and is something you will have to be in the mood for. But at times will mess up the flow and cut action scenes short. Yet somehow the pacing is very fast and quite a lot happens on the screen. You won't even have time to think about the plot. I will save you the trouble. There barely is a plot. In essence Jackie Chan's character Ryu Saeba is a womanizing private eye who is assigned to find the daughter of this wealthy CEO. He has found her pretty quickly but she manages to escape ending up on a cruise ship. Through some shenanigans Ryu also ends up on the ship as does his partner  Kaori Makimura who secretly has romantic feelings for him. Luck will have it that on this cruise ship a group of terrorists also are present who want to hijack the ship. Leader of this group is played by Richard Norton. His second in command is Gary Daniels.

The sequence of scenes and events that unfold almost can't be described. It's top notch action combined with zaniness to the max. One of the highlights is the Street Fighter parody / tribute. Till date the best adaptation of the highly popular video game. There is also a little nod to Bruce Lee and there is a lot of eye candy and sexiness to be enjoyed. Only in a Wong Jing film will you see the most beautiful women kick ass and do goofy stuff at the same time. 

Overall City Hunter is a blast from start to end but like I said might not entirely bring what people are used to from Jackie Chan. However it is incredibly funny and definitely one from the better films Jackie Chan has made.

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