City Hunter is based off the Manga of the same name from Japan, and is a movie that relies heavily on comedy as it’s main form of entertainment, with martial arts action and stunt work taking a very definite back up role.
The two work hand in hand though, as City Hunter is a bit of a ‘gun’, or ‘fist for hire’ who has been given the assignment of tracking down and bringing home a young girl who is the daughter of a wealthy Newspaper business owner.
City Hunter’s real name is Ryo Saeba (and is played by Jackie Chan of course!), and he lives with a young girl named Kaori Makimura, who has feelings for Saeba and gets jealous extremely easily. But the womanizing City Hunter doesn’t recognize this as he sets out on his mission to find Shizuko Imumura (the business man’s daughter) and Kaori heads off on her own to get away from City Hunter.
In pure comedy fashion, everyone ends up aboard a cruise along with a group of terrorists (lead by Richard Norton and Gary Daniels) with the usual evil plan. So naturally City Hunter goes after Shizuko Imumura and eventually has to fight off the terrorists and save the day.
A Very Visual Comedy
Most of the jokes are slapstick or visual in this movie. But two in particular stick out to me.
When City Hunter enters a cinema playing Game of Death, with Bruce fighting Kareem Abdul Jabaar – to which City Hunter jokes “I can’t take on a tall black guy like that, easy!”, naturally two tall black men enter and Jackie Chan has a hell of a time defeating them! Not until he starts to mimic Bruce does his victory come.
The second is a joke involving the classic video game Streetfighter II – Gary Daniels and Jackie Chan’s character end up in an arcade and being shocked electrically. Naturally everyone transforms into characters from the game, pulling off the moves exactly and even making the sounds and quotes their characters are known for. It’s a pretty cool nod to Streetfighter fans.
The comedy slips away from reality mostly but this all adds to the general light hearted feeling of the film. It is intended purely for fun and has little to no serious action.
The Action and Martial Arts
There is very little serious action in this film, but still some cool physical movements and humor that Jackie Chan is known for. The fights are mostly comedic and offer little in way of martial arts choreography.
At least until the final fight with Richard Norton and Jackie Chan!
The fight with Richard Norton and Jackie Chan is pretty cool. Norton shows off some cool stuff and Jackie does an impressive job also, but even this fight isn’t entirely absent from humor.
Less martial arts, more comedy. A funny film that I loved watching, but doesn’t rate quite so high on the action ladder. I still highly recommend it for a bit of fun!
On Blu Ray –
Region A (US & Canada)
Jackie Chan Double Pack: Battle Creek Brawl / City Hunter [Blu-ray]
Region B (UK, Australia, New Zealand, Europe etc)
On DVD –
Region 1 (US & Canada)
Region 2 (UK, Europe, etc)
City Hunter [DVD]
Region 4 (Australia, New Zealand, etc)
City Hunter on DVD