城市獵人
City Hunter (1993)


Reviewed by: Hyomil
Date: 04/07/2011


Reviewer Score: 4

Reviewed by: dandan
Date: 02/28/2011
Summary: he's so handsome...

somehow ryu saeba (jackie chan), aka 'city hunter', ends up on board a luxury cruise liner, having been employed to find the daughter or a wealthy japanese businessman, kiyoko (gotoh kumiko). luckily she's on board, although ryu saeba was actually looking for the sister of his dead partner, kaori (joey wong), who he works with. there's also a couple of ultra--glamorous lady cops, saeko (chingmy yau) and her friend (carol wan), on board. this is no bad thing as a group of hijackers (including richard norton and gary daniels) are also on the ship...

so, a half-assed set up from wong jing, a lot of very cartoonish stylisation, lots of the four female leads in various outfits, some very goofy jokes and jackie chan. on one hand this is a recipe for disaster: there are some really bad jokes, soft and hard crop up, there's a little too much face-pulling from jackie, a touch of misogyny here, some homophobia there, a half thought through idea and things which just don't make sense. on the other hand, half of that actually works quite well, at times, and there are some funny moments.

plus, there's some pretty enjoyable action. from the skateboarding chase, through various encounters on the ship, including the 'street fighter 2' sequence, leading up to the final showdown between jackie and richard norton, there's some more impressive work than one would expect. there's a good mix of stunts, gymnastics, hand to hand and weapon heavy fights. jackie, norton and gary daniels are looking pretty good.

any how, it is an uneven film and by no means one of jackie's best outings. probably best watched when you've already seen all the classics and you're ready to start trawling through the rest of his output.

okay.


Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 10/30/2010


Reviewer Score: 10

Reviewed by: cal42
Date: 06/17/2006
Summary: Not as good as I remember

Ryu Saeba (Jackie Chan) is hired to find a runaway girl, who ends up on a cruise ship filled with terrorists. Cue Die-Hard-on-a-ship with a typical Wong Jing twist (i.e. it’s not much good).

I used to like this movie, but in the harsh light of day thirteen years later I can’t understand why. Director Wong “My films make no sense” Jing’s script is all over the place and there’s at least two characters whose presence on the ship is never explained (or if it is explained somewhere, I missed it). I’m also not entirely sure how Ryu finds out that the runaway girl is destined for the cruise, either.

Richard Norton and Gary Daniels are pretty good as the main villains, but when the latter is given a great introduction with a sparring scene in his room, it comes as more of a disappointment when it doesn’t really amount to anything later in the film.

As usual, Wong Jing attempts to solve all plot problems by filling the screen with as many beautiful girls as possible. Here, he does succeed somewhat. We have the future Mrs Jean Alesi, Kumiko Goto (who looks extremely young); perennial favourite from 80’s HK flicks, Joey Wong; Wong Jing’s favourite exploitation actress Chingmy Yau (star of the quality-free NAKED KILLER), and some unknown beauty who plays Streetfighter’s Chun Li ;) .

This was the first of many films after Jackie Chan was requested to give over directorial control of his films in order to knock them out quicker. I understand why Golden Harvest were dismayed at the failure of MR CANTON AND LADY ROSE and the costly and time consuming OPERATION CONDOR, but I personally would have liked to have seen him making fewer films and not sacrificing quality.

On the plus side, there are a couple of good moments. The cartoonish opening establishes the film’s origin well (and features a cameo from Asia’s best Bruce Campbell look-alike Michael Wong) and the Streetfighter scene is still pretty funny, although the special effects have not aged well. The theatre scene in which Chan emulates Bruce Lee’s fight against Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to dispatch a few very tall dudes is a fun and FINAL statement on the differences between Chan and Lee. The showdown between Chan and Richard Norton sees Chan using tonfa for the first time since…God, I don’t know when…probably SPIRITUAL KUNG FU (or was it DRAGON FIST?). He also uses a pole in this scene, and it made me realise how much I miss seeing him using traditional Kung Fu weapons.

Wong Jing, whatever his talent may be, is not a good choice as a partner in a Jackie Chan film. There’s a disturbing amount of violence in places which seem totally inappropriate for a Chan film, as well as a typical Hong Kong homophobic stance. Jackie Chan has pretty much disowned the film (and the director – who would go on to launch an attack on Chan in his so-so 1995 movie HIGH RISK) and it comes as no surprise that the two never worked together again.

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 07/28/2005

In theory, this sounds like a project made in HK filmmaking heaven.The Biggest Star paired with the Hottest Producer-Director to make a film based on a very popular comic book. In reality the movie is a frenetic jumble of crazy stunts, gunplay, beautiful women, and some wonderful kungfu fighting by the irrepressible Jackie Chan.

"City Hunter" is a wild rollercoaster of a movie. It begins with kind of a prologue done in 60's Batman TV show style. Chan plays Ryu Saeba, a playboy/private eye who is hired to find the teenage runaway daughter of a Japanese millionaire. Chan had a partner who, when dying, had him promise to care for dying man's little sister, never to romance her. Well, the little sister becomes Ryu's assistant and grows up into Joey Wong Cho-Yin. Of course, Jackie can't act on his desire for his sexy assistant and she, in turn, wishes he would love her, not knowing of her brother'slast wish.

One of the first sequences in which Jackie gets to show off his unique skills involves a complicated chase scene, on skateboards, in moving traffic.Chan and his stunt men leap and fly over moving autos. Much has been written about how Chan controls his films and it is evident as all the so-called "Jackie" touches are present. What is also evident is the stamp of the action director, Ching Siu-Tung , a great director in his own right. The collaboration of Chan and Ching has turned "City Hunter" into a remarkable film.

Through various plot devices all the characters wind up on board a cruise ship that is being attacked by a gang of international terrorists for some reason[loot would be a good guess!]. The runaway Kiyoko, played by KumikoGoto, finds a ticket in the pocket of a costume she uses to elude Jackie.His assistant Kaori, disgusted with her boss's flirtations goes on holiday with her cousin. While trying to board the ship, Jackie runs into secret agent Chingmy Yau Suk-Ching. Her character Saeko thinks Ryu Saeba is a pest but she secretly loves him.

Jackie stows away to get on board and the fun begins as he searches the ship for his buddies and some food. It is his birthday and he hasn'thad a thing to eat all day! He catches up with Kiyoko as the terrorists are taking over the ship. Jackie fights off the bad guys with some beautifulscenes that show his hand-to-hand and pole fighting skills. In one scenehe gets help from Bruce Lee [!] in an empty shipboard screening room. In another scene, Jackie and two of his little buddies turn into the Streetfighter video game characters. Dressed in drag, Jackie defeats the enemy, an Anglo-creep who tried to rape Joey.

"City Hunter" is a light hearted comedy adventure that Jackie Chan fans will thoroughly enjoy. Wong Jing's reputation as the most prolific filmmaker working in Hong Kong is strengthened by his collaborative work with all the artists involved.

[This review originally appeared in Asian Cult Cinema #12]

Copyright © 1996 J. Crawford

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: Gaijin84
Date: 06/18/2005
Summary: Not horrible, but too wacky

City Hunter is a live action version of the Japanese manga of the same name, and has Jackie Chan portraying Ryu Saeba, a womanizing, comedic private investigator. Along with his sidekick Kaori (Joey Wong), he is hired to find the missing daughter of a wealthy Japanese business man. After a couple of comic capers, Ryu tracks Kioyko (Kumiko Goto) to a luxury liner about to embark on its maiden voyage. Unfortunately for Ryu, there is also a team of terrorists aboard, led by an American colonel (Richard Norton), and a duo of undercover agents (Chingmy Yau and Carol Wan) who have been tracking then. When the terrorists make their move and take the passengers hostage, Ryu, the agents and a card throwing vigilante (Leon Lai) must turn the tables and rescue the innocents.

If you enjoy Jackie's comic aspects, City Hunter is the movie for you. It basically provides Jackie an hour and a half to make faces and do goofy stunts. It is somewhat entertaining and funny, capturing the feel of a manga comic pretty decently. Unfortunately, there are some strange scenes thrown in the mix, including one where Jackie and the head villan are transformed into Street Fighter characters and battle (Jackie plays E. Honda and Chun Li(!) while Gary Daniels takes the role of Ken). It's pretty cheesy, but an interesting break from the rest of the film. Jackie and Joey Wong are pretty funny in their roles, and Chingmy Yau and Leon Lai provide some good action scenes. Decent, but not one of Jackie's better movies.

5/10

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: xiaoka
Date: 06/11/2005
Summary: one of jackie chan's best.

the people who complain about this film's sillyness apparently don't understand the context. And if you're blaming it on Wong Jing, you don't know what you're talking about.

This movie is based on a popular japanese comic book character... and it plays itself as a live action version of that. In that respect it does what its supposed to, and its entertaining in that respect.

Plus now 13 years later, this movie is a classic of 90's HK cinema. Jackie in his prime, Joey Wang, Chingmy Yau, A young Leon Lai.

High budget, creative fight scenes, funny (albeit infantile comicbook-like) jokes, classic 90s beauties, a homage to Bruce!!!

In retrospect when compared with a lot of the crap that Jackie turned out after this, I'd say this stands as one of his best action comedies.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: mrblue
Date: 06/18/2004

City Hunter is based on a popular Japanese manga (comic book). In it, Jackie Chan plays Ryo Saeba, a womanizing private eye who is hired to find a Japanese businessman's runaway kid (Kumiko Goto). He screws up the job and returns to his secret base, only to piss off his partner Kaori (Joey Wong) with his chauvinistic antics. Kaori goes off on a cruise, with Ryo in hot pursuit.

In the oh-so-convienent world of action movies, not only is the runaway on the same cruise, but also a group of terrorists led by Richard Norton and Gary Daniels. They take take over the ship ala Die Hard and hold the passengers hostage. Ryo, along with a femme fatale secret agent (Chingmy Yau) and a mysterious card-throwing gambler played by Leon Lai, decide to help and eventually save the day.

Like most of Wong Jing's movies, City Hunter goes all over the map. Most of the film is played for laughs and has a very cartoonish feel to it, complete with Warner Bros.-type sound effects. The last part, with Ryo taking on the terrorists, still has a high level of comedy to it -- including a sequence where Chan transforms into characters from the Street Fighter II video game -- but pumps up the action level. It all culminates in an excellent fight between Chan and Norton, who is one of the better gweilo actors/martial artists (and the only actor to be the main villain in two Jackie Chan movies).

If you're not normally a fan of Wong Jing's work, you're probably not going to find too much to change your mind with City Hunter. But if you're willing to turn off your brain, you should have fun with this one. The film has a good number of solid brawls (courtesy of the excellent action director Ching Siu-Tung) and some nice eye candy from the female leads. In my book, any movie with Chingmy Yau in a black leather Lara Croft-style outfit can't be all that bad.

[review from www.hkfilm.net]


Reviewed by: Chungking_Cash
Date: 01/26/2003

Wong Jing may have sounded like a good choice to helm "City Hunter" at the time but under the director's lazy eye most of the potential finds itself sacrificed to goofy Foley effects, comic book art direction, and childish pratfalls that unwisely attempt to emulate the film's anime/manga roots.

Wong stated in an interview he thought that Jackie Chan's previous films were humorless. His antidote is to pack every square inch of celluloid with nonsense and cast Chan as a pea brained skirt chasing Japanese P.I.

It doesn't take long before "City Hunter" becomes unbearable to look at even if just for a second and from in-between your fingers.

A valentine to Chan's waning Japanese audience that never pays off.

Chan later rubbished the film publicly drawing the ire of Wong who retaliated two years later with "High Risk" an occasionally mean spirited Jackie Chan satire.

Not surprisingly, Chan's next project ("Crime Story") was his most somber to date.

Reviewer Score: 3

Reviewed by: pjshimmer
Date: 11/14/2002

This is the only Jackie Chan movie I think of in which I didn't care for his character. I cared about everybody else: Chingmy Yau the agent, Joey Wong the revenge seeker, Richard Norton the commander, Gary Daniels the buff, the Japanese millionaire's daughter whose name I forget, and especially LEON LAI the poker player. He is simply the man here. Yes, I'm talking about the expressionless actor from Sword of Many Lovers. He is very cool here. Of course, the coolest person always gets the least onscreen time. He's only in about 5 minutes, and those 5 minutes were more interesting than the first 40 minutes of the movie where things seemed to go nowhere. Somehow everyone ends up on a boat and that's where the fun begins.

The fight scenes here are not as impressive as those in the other Chan movies like Police Story and First Strike. But this movie offers straight up entertainment. And it's not to say it doesn't have good action either. It has plenty. Again, the focus is on a lot of characters, so I personally didn't care about Jackie Chan.

When compared to Yuen Wo Ping's "Red Wolf," City Hunter has the same concept (except City Hunter wastes the first half of the movie while Red Wolf gets straight to the point). I enjoyed both movies trenmendously and refuse to recommend one over the other. They are both great entertainment.

P.S. The Street Fighter scene is a hilarious must-see!

[8/10]

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: MrBooth
Date: 05/08/2002
Summary: Wong Jing's evil genius at its finest

Wong Jing is at it again... another movie that straddles that fine line between genius and pure stupidity, and somehow finds gold there. CITY HUNTER is based on the same Manga that SAVIOUR OF THE SOUL is based on, though after the first 2 minutes there's really nothing in common between the 2 movies. In fact, CITY HUNTER is basically the same as Yuen Wo Ping's RED WOLF - i.e. "DIE HARD on a ship". But much much much much sillier!

I believe this is another movie that Jackie Chan his disowned. He disowned others like ISLAND ON FIRE because he thought they were too serious/violent/dark. I can only assume he disowned this one because it was too stupid . The whole movie is like watching a comic strip on screen. The visual style and humour are really well translated into movie form. The best example of this is probably the legendary scene where Jackie & his fighting opponent end up inside a STREETFIGHTER arcade machine, fighting with characters and moves from the game. Pure lunacy, but brilliant!

The script is actually pretty coherent for a Wong Jing effort, and stays in relatively good taste (nobody gets raped, there's only a couple of homophic jokes). There are a plethora of gorgeous women in the movie (Japanese actress Kumiko Gotoh being possibly the prettiest girl I've ever seen), but besides showing off their cleavage a lot they also have strong characters that are very independant and crucial to the plot. Jackie certainly wouldn't have made it to the end of the movie without the ladies, and one could almost believe that they could have foiled the hijacker-terrorists perfectly well without him at all.

There's a terrific assortment of gwei lo villains here, with Richard Norton as the US Commando-turned-master-criminal being much more tolerable than the usual gwei lo, and Gary Daniels being in quite shockingly impressive physical & fighting form.

Such a lot of colourful characters and inventive scenes, truly screwball comedy but hilarious... all very nicely filmed, generally a very impressive package of a movie! Making a movie this crazy requires a certain balance of bravery, heroism, and downright unstoppable stupidity which means that Wong Jing is certainly one of the few directors in the world that could have so effectively brought it life

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: Inner Strength
Date: 01/19/2002
Summary: Just another Wong Jing comedy

UPDATE:
After watching this again, I have changed my rating up to 2.5, as it seemed a bit better all these years later.
_____________________________________
Nothing much more than a typical Wong Jing movie, proving that only 1 out of 10 of his movies are ever any good.

However, some of it is quite funny, but most of the time you will not laugh (no matter how much the 'Jackie Chan fans' rave on about this).
Joey Wong and Chingmy Yau come off the best as far as comedy goes, but I don't think Jackie Chan belongs here for a moment. This part would have suited Aaron Kwok or Andy Lau MUCH better in my opinion. I think this might have been the only time Wong Jing worked with Jackie Chan, I might be wrong, but I can't think of anything else off hand, and the combination doesn't work.

The only good thing I can really say is that the fight scenes are quite good, and along with a good performance by Joey Wong makes this an okay movie at times. But I certainly would not agree with what most people have said on these reveiws, but I have a feeling they are just Jackie Chan fans (that's not having a pop at them or anything).

Rating (of 5): 2.5

(This rating is based on the year & genre, so don't think it's based as a comparison on new releases etc.)

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: Trigger
Date: 05/29/2001
Summary: For Anime Fans...

What a bizarre frickin movie! I enjoyed it very much. Very funny. There isn't much kung-fu to speak of, but being able to see Jackie Chan and others re-create the Street Fighter II video game was more than worth the price of admission. I've dropped enough quarters in that stupid game to pay for this DVD 3 times over (which isn't alot of quarters - I was more of a Mortal Kombat guy myself). It's a very silly film overall. There is an homage of sorts to Bruce Lee. Jackie breakdances in this as well. Mainly for Anime fans. This is very different from most of Jackie Chan's other films.

Seen on: DVD - Mega Star
Rating: Movie - 6.1/10

Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: Sydneyguy
Date: 05/05/2001
Summary: Very good

i found this VERY funny!! Look for the Street Fighter part, it's just the BEST!! A few extra stars in this like Leon Lai and Chingamy Yu but of course the focus is Jackie!! See Richard Norten again take on Jackie but this movie is more comedy than action (even though there is plenty of action!!)

8/10


Reviewed by: alienlord
Date: 04/29/2001

Action packed, thrill ride about private eye Chan who unwillingly gets caught up in a group of terrorists plans to hijack a luxury cruise and steal all the money from it's rich passengers. With a stellar cast like Jacky Chan, Joey Wong, and Chingmy Yau this film is almost unsinkable and consisitently absorbing until the last 15 minutes. ***/4

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: BMChu168
Date: 10/02/2000
Summary: A Great Comedic Effort!

This movie has got to be one of the funniest Jackie Chan movies I have ever seen. With an all-star cast, Wong Jing makes this one of the funniest movies he's ever made without crossing over the lines of bad taste. The character development is indeed a little shallow here with Leon Lai's character, but perhaps it was meant that way to give his character a mysterious edge. The plot makes sense and flows smoothly throughout the movie with all of the laughs along the way. The action sequences are just mediocre with really only the last fight scene between Jackie Chan and Richard Norton being the only spectacular fight sequence in the movie. Watch this movie more for its comedy and not for its action. The 2 funniest scenes in the movie have to be the Street Fighter scene and the scene where one of the baddies turns out to be a homosexual (included only in the DVD version of the movie). I would honestly like to recommend this movie to all of those viewers out there who're just looking for a feel-good movie to relax to and get a lot of good laughs in.
10/10

Reviewer Score: 10

Reviewed by: Dai Lo
Date: 04/13/2000

Wong Jing proves again why he is the king of shlock. This movie is terrible and i mean terrible. In the original chinese version Jackie Chan's voice is dubbed, he speaks the language, but for some strange reason he's dubbed. And the running gag in the movie is not funny. Its cartoonish attempts at humor fail. Neither Jackie Chan nor Leon Lai play interesting characters that we like or care about. The action is 'blah' and the dialogue is even more 'blah' no wonder Jackie Chan himself holds this movie in contempt. This movie is forgettable and unlikeable.
(by man-kin chan)


Reviewed by: hkcinema
Date: 12/08/1999

I love Jackie Chan, Chingmy Yau, and Joey Wong (Chingmy and Joey are total babes whose looks help this movie out a lot). Some of the sound effects and gags are totally cheesy. There is barely any action in th first 45 minutes and the comedy is lame. The last half does have some great fight scenes, but I'm not sure if it makes up for the lame first half. I recommend this to Jacky Chan fans like myself, but otherwise I would consider watching something else.

(2.5/4)



[Reviewed by Adam Scott Pritzker]


Reviewed by: hkcinema
Date: 12/08/1999

A good kung fu comedy with Richard Norton featuring as the baddie leader. Plenty of funny sequences.

(7/10)



[Reviewed by Dave Warner]


Reviewed by: hkcinema
Date: 12/08/1999

Jackie's character is RyO Saeba not RyU Saeba.

[Reviewed by Jay Fong]


Reviewed by: hkcinema
Date: 12/08/1999

Jackie Chan is the popular Japanese comic book character RyuSaeba: part detective, part mercenary, all womanizer. With his bumbling assistant Kaori, Ryu is asked by newspaper tycoon Imamura to return his beautiful runaway daughter, Shizuko. Ryu and Kaori somehow make their way onto a cruise ship, whose guests include Shizuko and a motley band of hijackers. In a way only Jackie Chan can portray, Ryu manages to spoil the cruise for the thieves with the help of more beautiful women than even he can handle.

[Reviewed by Rim Films Catalog]


Reviewed by: spinali
Date: 12/08/1999
Summary: NULL

PI playboy Ryu Saeba (Jackie Chan) is contracted to look for a Japanese runaway; in the process, he ends up on a luxury liner about to be seized by Col. MacDonald "of the U.S. Commandos" and his Ninja thugs (who dress in red instead of black, I guess for invisibility in case of a bloodbath). Pratfalls, silly fantasy sequences, and goofy sound effects make for a high cringe-factor. Still, some of the set-pieces are inspired -- especially when Jackie and two skateboard buddies fight a blond kung-fu villain by transforming the situation into a real life video game.

(2.5/4)



[Reviewed by Steve Spinali]

Reviewer Score: 6