Armour of God 2: Operation Condor (Jackie Chan, 1991). Photo: The Kobal Collection
Film Society of Lincoln Center is thrilled to partner with the New York Asian Film Festival and the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office to present The Jackie Chan Experience. This exciting, one of a kind event features a conversation with Chan about his career followed by a screening of his 101st film, the massive blockbuster Chinese Zodiac, on June 10. In addition, we'll be paying tribute to this daring master of comedy and dazzling stunt-filled Kung Fu with a retrospective of 13 of his films from June 23 – 27. Find out more about them below:
In Armour of God (Jackie Chan, 1986). Chan plays a pop star turned treasure hunter who tries to rescue an old friend’s girlfriend from psychotic monks. Chan also took a life-threatening fall while performing a stunt that halted production for months and required emergency surgery. To this day, he still bears the hole in his head. The sequel, Armour of God 2: Operation Condor (Jackie Chan, 1991), went way over budget and over schedule as Chan hopped around the globe trying to top himself, which he does.
Chan resurrects his character from the Armour of God franchise in Chinese Zodiac (Jackie Chan, 2012) and delivers an action spectacle that has broken box-office records in China. This movie contains manic action scenes, hidden islands, and pirate gangs. Reported to be his final “large-scale action picture,” this is Chan’s farewell to the blockbuster movies that made him famous.
In City Hunter (Wong Jing, 1993) Chan finds himself onboard a luxury cruise liner that becomes the target of terrorists. With outrageous set-pieces, a deadly card game, and a movie-theater brawl that has Chan imitating the moves of an on-screen Bruce Lee, City Hunter is packed with insane action and ridiculous comedy that you won’t want to miss.
Drunken Master 2 (Lau Kar-leung & Jackie Chan, 1994). Photo: Golden Harvest/Paragon/The Kobal Collection/Robert Lam
Drunken Master 2 (Lau Kar-leung & Jackie Chan, 1994) was filmed at the peak of Chan’s prime and many claim this to be the greatest martial arts film ever made. Chan shares the screen with Ti Lung and Anita Mui, who steals the show as his motor-mouthed stepmother. Lush, opulent, and made with no consideration for budget or schedule, it took three months just to shoot the final action scene.
Chan finally proves he’s not just an action star in Little Big Soldier (Ding Sheng, 2010). Set in ancient China, it centers on a farmer (Chan) who’s drafted into the army and winds up accidentally capturing the enemy general. If he can get his unwilling captive back home he’ll earn his freedom. It’s a heartbreaking and hilarious escapade, and Chan’s camera-ready charisma has never been put to better use.
1920s gangster fantasia Miracles (also known as Mr. Canton & Lady Rose; Jackie Chan, 1989) is the movie Chan is most proud of directing. He plays a country bumpkin who inherits the top crime king position from a dying mafia boss in this remake of Frank Capra’s Lady for a Day.
Police Story (Jackie Chan, 1985). Photo: Golden Harvest/Paragon/The Kobal Collection
Police Story (Jackie Chan, 1985) is Chan's first contemporary cop thriller, where he plays a hot-tempered inspector framed for murder by a drug lord. This is a breathless adrenaline rush, and contains what might be a record-high amount of broken glass per minute. In Police Story 2 (Jackie Chan, 1988), Chan begins the film demoted to traffic duty after his mall-destroying misadventures in part one. The spectacular stunts and killer set-pieces are still there, including a climactic duel with a deaf-mute bomber set in a fireworks-laced warehouse. In Police Story 3: Supercop (Stanley Tong, 1992), Chan goes undercover with a dangerous drug lord—a set-up that finds him breaking a henchman out of prison, posing with an invented family, and finally dangling from a moving helicopter. The film was released in the US in a dubbed, recut version featuring a theme song by the seminal New Wave rock band Devo.
Project A (Jackie Chan, 1983) is a cops-versus-pirates action movie that transformed Chan from a martial arts star into a director of transcendent physical comedy. One of the first action movies to be set in colonial Hong Kong, Project A is the first of Jackie’s films to contain outrageous stunts, including a jaw-dropping bicycle chase and a 50-foot fall from a clock tower that was so terrifying it took Jackie three days to work up the courage to attempt it. In Project A 2 (Jackie Chan, 1987), Chan keeps four separate subplots whirling while leaving time for intense action and groundbreaking stunts.
Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow (Yuen Wo-ping, 1978) is where it all began. The film became Jackie’s first box-office hit, and the first movie to introduce the world to his innovative brand of action-comedy.
Jackie’s directorial debut The Young Master (Jackie Chan, 1980) was the ideal showcase for his martial arts prowess. Opening on a high-stakes lion dance competition and closing on a ferocious showdown, The Young Master features Chan exploring the thin line between Kung Fu as performance and as life-or-death combat.