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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 18.42%
Average: 5.26%
Pretty Bad: 1.75%
Total Crap: 2.63%

7 reviews, 72 user ratings

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Legend of Drunken Master, The
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by Jason Whyte

"Chan....Jackie Chan."
5 stars

I know that many people detest, even hate, Jackie Chan the person or the actor, or even his films, but I think that anyone for a passion of choreography or movement, or even humour that comes out of it, can appreciate Chan in some way.

After all, he does his own stunts and all the fighting scenes (well, sometimes there are doubles, but not is the case here), he has a good sense of humour, and he is handsome and a good leading man. North American audiences have been somewhat kind to his films; movies like the hilarious "Rush Hour" and "Shanghai Noon", both films that sort of parody Chan and have breakout stars that come out with him (Chris Tucker and Owen Wilson, respectively), and most of his imports have been well recieved.

It couldn't be more true than the reissue of his 1994 Hong Kong film "The Legend of Drunken Master," which is now dubbed and released to North American audiences. And by far, it is one of the best Chan films I have seen. It would be fun if the distributors of Chan's imports (Dimension, New Line) would re-release some of his earlier films to cinemas here as well. But this one will do for now.

"Drunken Master," as the title suggests, is the claim that being drunk enough can lead to better fighting, or "drunken boxing." The basic plot involves Chan and fighting with smugglers of Chinese artifacts, and gets wound up with baddling the bad guys on booze, which amazingly works in this story. Just go with it.

The plot may not matter in "Drunken Master," but at least there is a decent one there. There are even a few nice moments with Chan's mother in the film (A hilarious Anita Mui) and his father, who disowns him at one point due to his drunken boxing. As well, the plot points serve up some interesting ideas to handle the action.

And boy, is there action. There are several fight scenes throughout the film that are the best of Chan's work, including a fight under a train with an artifact thief, a fight at a bar where bamboo poles are used like you could never imagine, and a standout drunken boxing scene where Chan seems to be able to bend over sideways and back up again.

However, nothing prepared me for the final fight sequence, which involves Chan battling his arch nemesis (a fascinating Ken Lo) in a 15 minute battle that tests not only every single stunt that can be performed in a bare knuckle kung-fu fest, but the adrenaline rate of viewers. It left me breathless, laughing, light headed and dazzled. The choreography is so wild and awesome that it beats most action films released these days.

"The Legend of Drunken Master" is a rich and stunning entry in Jackie Chan's resume. Director Lau Ka Leung deserves much acclaim for this masterpiece of kung fu cinema, even with some plot holes, bad dubbing and sub-standard outtakes at the end, which are just a few shots of the aftermath of stunts. Even so, this will no doubt make a few fans out of those who haven't seen Chan before, and restore faith in anyone who thinks it is all been there, done that.

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originally posted: 07/09/04 13:44:18
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User Comments

8/29/08 Shaun Wallner Intense Action!!! 5 stars
3/28/06 Brian Meyer Great! But the First Drunken Master is BEST ACTION MOVIE EVER!!!! 5 stars
12/10/05 noops another gr8 movie frm chan 5 stars
10/12/05 Tom Burns great jackie chan action and comedy. 5 stars
7/28/05 Quigley The fights were pure movie magic. Chan rules as always; story was incredibly lame 5 stars
4/25/05 DM The action is so exciting you completely forget about anything else. 5 stars
3/15/05 Ronin Drunken boxing is the most spectacular style IMO. Awesome 4 stars
2/05/05 bongeezer Jackie is great, Story is not. 3 stars
2/02/05 Rodney Stephens DESCENT MOVIE BUT NOT PERFECT 3 stars
2/02/05 Carolyn Rathburn Hillariously funny, only Jackie Chan could do these stunts. Enjoyed it. 5 stars
1/24/05 keithers.. This is Chans way of Saying "I'm still the king of action!" 5 stars
7/24/04 Sandy Turynowicz Funny 4 stars
7/17/04 Raymond Lee Great fights and action 5 stars
4/05/04 Stephen Crancher Brilliant film 5 stars
11/21/03 rony this movie was da bomb!!!! Jackie Chan kicks ass!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!^_^ 5 stars
7/05/03 Zargo wierd... how everyone loves this but me... and I've seen 34 of chans so I'm hardly ignorant 3 stars
6/05/03 Maurice "The Predator" This movie is fucking sweet!! Jackie rulez like god 5 stars
2/09/03 cinkcool great 5 stars
1/06/03 Thomas Saylor this movie is the best movie I have ever seen 5 stars
1/21/02 keith langman This is Jackie chans big!!!!1 movie it's legendary 5 stars
12/28/01 Waylon Roundtree Saw long ago, and I never get tired of watching it! 5 stars
11/30/01 Rutt13 THE reason why Jacki Chan is my hero...Amazing, I hope to watch with my kids one day! 5 stars
10/19/01 Daniel Paz Awesome Kick Ass!!! 5 stars
9/26/01 joe awesome 5 stars
7/29/01 Jennifer Gaissert I am proud to be of the same species as Jackie Chan 5 stars
7/23/01 Thor-Leo Nothing to add, just doing my part to boost the rating of a brilliant film. 5 stars
6/22/01 Tommy Wyvern Wonderful, that's the least you can say about this magnificent action movie!! 5 stars
5/03/01 Gracy Lionheart LOVED IT...Demonstrates perfectly the prestige class of drunken master in D&D 5 stars
4/25/01 Ben Gonzales Truly Awesome! The fights are the best Jackie Chan has done. Definitely Top 10 material. 5 stars
4/05/01 Breadpie This film belongs in my all-time Top 10. That's saying a lot. 5 stars
3/21/01 fifu wow!!! i give it a 5 out of 6 one of my favorite movies the best forien film i've ever seen 5 stars
3/06/01 Aytim Contains some of the best action scenes ever filmed 5 stars
1/13/01 Jake The best time at had at the movies in 2000 5 stars
1/05/01 Msitrab AMAZING!! The final fight in this movie will make your jaw drop 5 stars
12/29/00 Bruce The most amazing hand to hand fights I have seen 5 stars
12/19/00 John Palombo Dubbing was TERRIBLE, but these things happen. Makes you want to learn Drunken Boxing. 4 stars
11/23/00 T.F.M. The Best Jackie Chan Movie 5 stars
11/17/00 DJ Cones The Best Kung-Fu Movie Of All Time! 5 stars
11/16/00 Dane Jackson Great fun! 5 stars
11/16/00 Heather One of the best action movies you'll see this year 5 stars
11/05/00 Boy In The Designer Bubble Saw this flick with some mates, they hated it. I was too drunk to care! 3 stars
10/30/00 thebigguy WEEEEEE! 5 stars
10/30/00 fishie Movements so fast it will make your head spin. An absolute must-see. Loved it! 5 stars
10/30/00 dennis bergkamp No action film beats it 5 stars
10/28/00 danh excellent - one of the alltime best 5 stars
10/25/00 Victoria OMFG NOT ANOTHER JACKIN CHAN MOVIE! 1 stars
10/25/00 Bob One of the best J. Chan movies I've ever seen. Fantastic action. 5 stars
10/25/00 chuckmfh Just like any other Kung-Foo movie with English dubbed in 2 stars
10/25/00 fuckin' swats 2 stars
10/24/00 Clarance Ban this bitch from making movies! 1 stars
10/23/00 Doughy Holy fucking shit! Extraordinary in every way. Pretty goddamn funny too 5 stars
10/23/00 Greyjack Un-fricking-believable. Probably Jackie's best movie. Excellent slapstick farce, too! 5 stars
10/22/00 Klute If action is what you're after, it gets no better than this. But the humour makes it a 5'er 5 stars
10/22/00 PJ The Greatest Kung Fu movie ever, period!!!!!!!!!!!!!! * * * * * stars 5 stars
10/19/00 angel the bomb ass kick ass jackie chan movie 5 stars
10/18/00 James Eldred This movie is the best Kung Fu flick of all time...period 5 stars
8/03/00 Bryan Wyatt Chan seems to be in the prime of his career and totaly kicks arse while totally drunk. 5 stars
6/29/00 Aiken Drum This and The Young Master are my two favourite Jackie Films, and I am a BIG fan 5 stars
5/21/00 Cinesuerte Awesome 5 stars
3/25/00 mrenwick All Jackie, all the time!! Great scene-stealing by (Chan's ex-girlfriend) Anita Mui too... 5 stars
3/08/00 Viper Greatest Jackie Chan film of the 90s 5 stars
12/20/99 Eric S. A bit overrated Jackie Chan film. The stunts are there, but the setting is terrible. 3 stars
11/11/99 Foxdvd One of the Best Jackie Movies. The action is equal to even Jet Li's best 5 stars
10/27/99 Ford Fuck Rush Hour, this is the ALL TIME Jackie chan film. Awe inspiring drunken boxing style. 5 stars
10/17/99 Kris Richardson Amazing action from the absolute King!!! 5 stars
9/02/99 Elman makes "matrix kung fu scenes"look like a Billie Blanks Tai-Bo workout 5 stars
7/02/99 Cris Morales Amazing, incredible, and satisfying 5 stars
7/01/99 Mike Lowrey INCREDIBLE! CHAN IS THE MAN! 5 stars
6/28/99 Steve Bashakus Not for pussy amateurs or poor readers (ie. subtitles) - amazing, simply amazing. 5 stars
4/11/99 sebo wrong wrong wrong wrong 1 stars
4/04/99 Albert Someone was drunk when they ranked this. 3 stars
1/18/99 Marcello Pietrantonio This is Jackie Chan's best ever movie. Great stunts, jokes, humor and Kung Fu action. 5 stars
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  20-Oct-2000 (R)


  02-Jul-1994 (M)

Directed by
  Lau Ka Leung

Written by
  Edward Tang
  Tong Man Ming
  Yuen Chieh Chi

  Jackie Chan
  Ti Lung
  Anita Mui
  Lau Ka Leung
  Andy Lau
  Wing-Fong Ho

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