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Original Title:
Ging chaat goo si

Hong Kong 1985

Action, Comedy

Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan
Brigitte Lin
Maggie Cheung
Chor Yuen
Lam Kwok-Hung
Kam Hing Ying
Lau Chi-Wing
Bill Tung

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Police Story

Story: Cop Ka-kui (Jackie Chan) and his team take down drug lord Tom Ku (Chor Yuen) and his gangster fellows in a spectacular operation. Only Ku's secretary Selina (Brigitte Lin) is released from custody because she has a deal as the chief witness testifying against her former boss. For Selina's protection Ka-kui is assigned to look after her. However, Selina doesn't want to be protected and moreover she makes May (Maggie Cheung), Ka-kui's girlfriend pretty jealous and mad. In the end, the chief witness can escape and prevents that her boss has to go to prison.
Being set free Ku has to come to the conclusion that Selina is still a security risk for him. He hires some killers but Ka-kui can save her life on more than one occasion. Nonetheless, Ka-kui was played with by Ku and so the policeman is now chased by his own men as a murderer.
Eventually, Ka-kui can track down Ku with the help of May and one last showdown takes place that will decide about the fate of all of them...

Review: "Police Story" is a classic and a milestone of its time. It's a little bit unfair to write a review about this film from today's point of view. Even in its days the story was bland, the actors' efforts were only decent and yet no one cared about it. And rightly so, because what you get to see in this flick are bonebreaking and breathtaking stunts of the kind you have never seen before. Concerning the stunts even Tony Jaa and Co. can't keep up with it. Well, the comparison isn't correct as we don't get to witnesss incredible acrobatics, but Jackie Chan typical stunts. And one of the best and dangerous he ever performed, at that!
Of course the humour also doesn't come too short. Therefore you should say goodbye to any kind of reasoning as soon as possible and just be entertained by this action blockbuster.

Being disappointed by his cinematic trip to America and the resulting movie "The Protector," Jackie Chan decided to take up the reins himself, show the Americans how to exploit one's full potential and how to bring out the best of a cheap cop story.
First and foremost, the movies delivers over the top stunts. Even the opening, in which nearly a whole slum area gets torn apart in a chasing scene is very impressive. That already gives us an idea what to expect of the rest of the film, but now there is also your Chan-typical humour that kicks in. Interestingly enough he doesn't play the likeable nice guy, instead he sometimes even seems a little bit conceited and impudent, for example when he beefs about May. Naturally, he is just that way until she affrontedly runs away after accidently overhearing his talking. Then he is the one who runs after her with his tail between his legs. He is just tough-talking, of course, and this leads to some nice gags.
A little highlight of the jokes is the scene in which he has to answer all incoming phone calls in a police station on his own. How else could it be: at the end he has several phone calls running at the same time, whereas he confuses what to say to whom and even ends up in a tangle of telephone cords. Just your typical Chan-humour. One small scene even features a little car parking tutorial for advanced drivers...

About the acting abilities we better make no words. Well, it doesn't matter, anyway, because "Police Story" is not a movie that works because of its perfectedly detailed characters. At least Brigitte Lin proves to have quite some on-screen presence and Maggie Cheung will make you smile every now and then. It's fascinating that she always got the female supporting role as the annoying girlfriend. Of course, this is way below her actual skill level, but it did take some years until one did recognize this fact and she was allowed to shine in movies like "In the Mood for Love".
As we are already talking about the female actresses. I was impressed that they apparently performed most of their stunts themselves! They are thrown on tables, pushed through glas vitrines or are falling down the stairs. Chan didn't go easy on the actresses at all!

The movie breathes stunts and so it's no wonder, that the film was inofficially named "Glass Story" by the stuntteam. The amount of glass that is broken in the last scene in the mall nearly isn't fun to watch anymore. In a positive way, of course...
Furthermore several stuntmen had to be hospitalized, when they for example crashed through the windshield of the second level of a bus and didn't land on the car parked in front of it as planed, but instead hit the hard asphalt.
However, the most dangerous stunts were performed by Chan himself, of course. This guy is damn crazy. He slides down a chain of lights for several yards, while the power on the lights wasn't decreased as it should have been, causing an electricity shock and various burns on Chan's hands getting him into hospital, too. How no one of the stuntmen were fatally wounded in the end is a wonder.
Why all this background knowledge? Just to illustrate what kind of lunatic and breathtaking stunts you should expect to witness, and moreover, quite frankly, there isn't anything else to tell about the movie.

The fighting sequences aren't that impressive, but nevertheless solid. Technically the movie has some flaws, e.g. the repeated and from various camera angles shot scenes from one and the same stunt, which gives the movie something of a stuntshow. Yet, when you think about it "Police Story" is exactly that. This isn't meant to sound negative, because the audience is treated with very sincere. We are just fed with cool action and stunts, which are refined with loveable characters and lots of humour. We didn't expect more, so why bother talking about the sore points? Qualitatively, Chan made history with his stunt performances here. You can see that he put all his heart in this movie and this makes it so worthwhile to watch.
Nonstop-action and cool jokes make this classic a definite recommendation!

(Author: Manfred Selzer)
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