Double Feature Review: Police Story (1985) & Police Story 2 (1988)

You may know the name, but the game has changed.

You may know the name, but the game has changed.

POLICE STORY (1985)
Rated PG-13 / Color / 90 minutes
Directed by Jackie Chan
Also Known As: Ging chat goo si

POLICE STORY 2 (1988)
Rated PG-13 / Color / 92 minutes
Directed by Jackie Chan
Also Known As: Ging chat goo si 2
Purchase this double feature: Amazon.com (DVD) | Amazon.com (Blu-ray)

Though retired from doing his own stunts in recent years, Jackie Chan’s past efforts are still spectacular and unmatched to this day. Case in point, Jackie Chan’s POLICE STORY features the martial artist’s amazing physical prowess, while providing an engaging storyline, some laughs, and some kick-ass action sequences!

In this film, Chan plays officer Chan Ka Kui, a young detective that becomes a minor celebrity after single-handedly nabbing a drug baron named Mr. Chu Tao. This occurs during a botched police raid that reduces an entire shantytown to rubble! (This scene was later cribbed by Michael Bay for Bad Boys 2.)

Aftewards, Chan literally becomes the poster boy for the police department and is given the cushy job of protecting a witness named Selina Fong (Brigitte Lin). But things go awry, the case is tossed out (due to lack of reliable witnesses and evidence), and a vengeful Mr. Chu is soon back out on the streets.

Eventually Selina comes to her senses after some thugs attempt to frame Jackie and kill her, so she hacks in to Chu’s computer and gets proof of his dirty dealings. She is quickly accosted by Chu’s kung-fu henchmen, but is luckily rescued when an insanely angry Chan Ka Kui arrives on the scene.

The heroic cop starts pummeling Chu’s men in a series of awesomely choreographed fights! The climactic battle between Jackie and the baddies is fantastic, with tons of glass displays, windows, lighting fixtures, and bodies being broken throughout a mall. It’s probably one of my all-time favorite Jackie Chan battles!

Enjoy POLICE STORY’s climax below!

 POLICE STORY 2 takes place right after the events of the first movie. Chan Ka Kui is getting rebuked by his superiors for all the damage he caused in the first film. But damn it… HE GETS RESULTS! After being demoted to a traffic cop, Chan and his girlfriend May (Maggie Cheung, with a much larger role) try to relax.

But between Chu’s men making constant idle threats, and the cops needing Jackie’s assistance all the time, it seems like things just won’t work out for the two lovebirds. Then disaster strikes as a group of terrorists begin a campaign of violence in order to extort money from a wealthy businessman.

Chan and a group of young detectives are on the case, but just can’t seem to capture the criminals. That is until May is kidnapped. With his woman in the hands of dangerous crooks, Chan Ka Kui springs into action and battles the quartet of bombermen (in a fireworks factory no less), which leads up to a tremendously explosive ending.

POLICE STORY is an awesome Jackie Chan flick with some highly memorable action scenes, several silly (but funny) slapstick moments, and a serious dramatic turn in the final act. It all culminates into one of the best Hong Kong action flicks you’ll ever lay eyes on, and is rightfully considered a classic!

For making me laugh, cheer, and wince (man, some of these stunts must have hurt) I award this film a rating of:

POLICE STORY 2 is fun, but a far cry from its predecessor. The story gets a bit convoluted, with Jackie’s exploits focusing far too long on his rivalry with Chu. (Who is on his deathbed at this point.) Most of the fight scenes involve Chan beating up on Chu’s annoying henchmen, leaving the final act to his big showdown with the film’s real villains.

Speaking of which, the bombers are sort of boring bad guys, with only one of them turning out to be awesome. The “weakest link” of their group is a scrawny little dude that’s a deaf-mute, but he’s agile, feisty, and throws a variety of incendiaries at Jackie during their brawl.

In the end, the movie is a bit too long and doesn’t have enough action to fill up the running time in my opinion. (Though the fight scene in the playground is pretty awesome!) And the bad guys just didn’t rock my world aside from the weird little mute guy.

Still, there’s a lot of great stunts by the Chan-man here, and I love his interactions with his superiors this time around, as they are mainly played for laughs.

Though it’s a half hour too long, and one fight scene too short, I still enjoyed POLICE STORY 2 and gladly give it:

BLU-RAY REVIEW

The Packaging: Both films come on one Blu-ray disc in a standard Blu-ray case. The cover art, isn’t anything particularly fancy.

Audio & Video: Each film has four audio choices: ENGLISH DUBBED 5.1 DTS-MASTER HD, ENGLISH DUBBED 2.0 DTS-MASTER HD, CANTONESE 5.1 DTS-MASTER HD, and CANTONESE 2.0 DTS-MASTER HD. I watched both films with 5.1 English dubbing and was more than happy with it, though sometimes it seemed that the dialogue was a bit too low at times in POLICE STORY 2. This forced me to keep my surround sound remote on hand at all times.

The transfers of both films are good, though POLICE STORY 2 proves to be the better-looking of the two. It has a much cleaner video presentation with far less grain than POLICE STORY. I’m guessing that this is the best Shout! Factory could do with the film elements that were provided for their use?

"Stop what you're doing and go buy my movies now!"

“Stop what you’re doing and go buy my movies now!”

The Extras: On the back of the Blu-ray cover, it states that the only extras are outtakes and theatrical trailers. Imagine my surprise when I discovered more extras on the disc!

POLICE STORY has the original Hong Kong trailer, the U.S. trailer, outtakes, deleted scenes (most of which run only a few seconds), an extended opening sequence, and an “alternate ending.” The video quality of most of these extras is not very good (the gents at Bluray.com seem to believe that it was sourced from a video transfer) and are oddly shown in a “windowbox” format.

POLICE STORY 2 fares a bit better (some of the extras are actually in HD!) and boasts outtakes, the international trailer, the original Hong Kong trailer, and alternate outtakes.

Final Ruling: For under fifteen bucks, you really can’t complain too much about this double feature Blu-ray. You get two cool Jackie Chan flicks, with a better than average video presentation and good audio. On top of that, you get a handful of extras and cool menus that blare the franchise’s theme song, HERO STORY, as sung by Jackie Chan himself.

Speaking of which…

 

It’s not a perfect release, but this is probably the best we can expect for these two Jackie Chan classics. I’m more than content with the presentation of the films, but not a fan of the windowboxing on the bulk of the extra features. Still, I think this double feature release is worth owning, and worthy of: