Well, I have never missed on any of the Police Story series by Jackie Chan and I make sure that I did not missed out on the latest one even though there are a lot of negative reviews on the movies.
Police Story 2013 is a reboot of the Police Story series, ditching the Chan Ka-Hui persona from the first four Police Story series and Chan Kwok-Wing from the New Police Story. While there are a lot of negative reviews on the movies, I must said....it's actually not that bad. It's just not good enough.
First of all, one thing that Jackie really pull out of this movie is to prove movie critic, James Berardinelli who once said of Jackie's style in Police Story as an "action with a smile, not a grimace". In Police Story 2013, it is very heavy on grimacing...in fact, it's probably a bit too much. The movie is "grim and gritty".
I tried to avoid any spoiler here...so here's a simple summary of the movie:
Jackie Chan plays Mainland Chinese police Captain Zhong Wen. He goes to meet his somewhat-estranged daughter Miao Miao (Jing Tian) at the Wu Bar, an industrial-chic establishment converted from a factory. Zhong discovers Miao Miao is dating the Wu Bar’s proprietor Wu Jiang (Liu Ye), something he disapproves of. It turns out that his suspicions of Wu Jiang are not unfounded as Zhong and the rest of the patrons get taken hostage inside the nightclub. Wu Jiang pursues a vendetta that began one night five years ago with an incident in a pharmacy, and it turns out that Zhong was there. Zhong has to fight for the safety of his daughter and everyone else held hostage as the police plans an infiltration of the Wu Bar to put an end to a night of madness.
The movie's beginning already showed the audience that the movie is not the same old Jackie's movie. The opening scene shows Jackie holding a gun to his own head.
Most of Jackie Chan's movies are exuberant and silly....the actions scenes are mixed with humour and comedy in an inventive manner. The problem with the movie is that without all these humour, comedy and silly moments in the action scene, Jackie Chan is simply a stripped away action movie star....just like any other action heroes we watch on Hollywood and Hong Kong. Without the mixture of playfulness in the movie, Jackie simply isn't at his best...the movie is simply a typical violent and action movie.
Jackie Chan isn't a bad actor...he was good in his portrayal as a serious actor (just like how he did in Crime Story or even Karate Kid) but without his funny and humourous action scene, he becomes an ordinary actor. In the movie, he was good...both him and co-actress Jing Tian were good as father and daughter. Another problem with the movie is the villain. Unlike in New Police Story, Daniel Wu was charismatic in his wickedness....here, Liu Ye simply is a disappointment. I can't find a better word for it.
There is a great fighting scene though in the movie but it's simply not enough. The brutal cage match, hit and impacts that are enhanced with Zack-Snyder style slow motion and ramping was great...but it's simply not enough.
Well, is there a disappointment in watching the movie? Yes...but it's good to see how Jackie tried something new. I guess it's simply not enough in Police Story 2013...everything seems too ordinary. Hopefully, we will see more of the seriousness in his coming movies, but let's hope that there will be some mix of the humour and playfulness that we are so used to when it comes to Jackie Chan.