Miracles is a film made by Jackie Chan in 1989, and he considers it his favorite film out of all of the films he has made. Unfortunately, of all the Jackie Chan films I’ve seen so far this would have to be one of my least favorite.
The movie is set in 1930s Hong Kong. Jackie plays Kuo Cheng-Wah, a young country bumpkin with no money, after being cheated of his remaining few dollars during a time of financial hardship.
While working out a few things in his head, he is offered rose by a woman on the street and he decides he will buy one. As he gets up to buy the rose a cars goes flying through the seat he was sitting in and he gets caught up in a battle between two gangs.
The boss of one gang is dieing, and when asked who should take over, he makes a few incoherent noises and points in the general direction of Cheng-Wah, so that gang take it that Cheng-Wah is the new gang leader.
Going from rags to riches, Cheng-Wah starts running the criminal organsiation with his ‘nice guy’ ways. He decides to keep buying red roses from the same lady as he sees it as good luck – beleiving that had he not bought the rose in the first place he would have been killed by the car instead of becoming rich.
But when her daughter is to come into town with her fiance and his family, the woman selling the roses panics as she has been telling her she is rich and can support her in college – when in reality she lives very poorly selling her roses and is sending all the money to her daughter.
To avoid disappointment and the possible cancellation of their wedding, Cheng-Wah and his mob of gangsters fake a rather luxurious and glamorous lifestyle for the woman, causing many awkward situations.
So…. Is It Actually a Martial Arts Movie?
I guess so. It has Jackie Chan, he gets into a couple of fights and shows off his stuff – but not a hell of alot.
In my opinion this movie is a comedy with Martial Arts forced into it. Being inspired by the film ‘Pocketful of Miracles’ – a comedy from the 60’s, Jackie Chan has put his own spin on things and written out a very elaborate situation with things constantly getting harder and escalating as it becomes more and more difficult to disguise the whole scenario as the truth.
I don’t mind comedies, but this movie almost put me to sleep. It was relatively funny and kept you wondering whats going to happen next, but I watched it from a Martial Arts point of view.
Take away the desire for awesome Jackie Chan action and you’ve got an ‘OK’ film, but it’s not a stand out moment in his career. More of a ‘space filler’ between his other, more successful films. This one seemed to go forever.
The Martial Arts and Action
Jackie still shows off some physical action worthy of his name in this movie, just a lot less of it.
The fight at the end of the movie is the most entertaining as he takes on a number of men inside a factory in true Jackie Chan style – using various bits and pieces of the environment to create intricate and precisely choreographed fights with fast pace and a lot of acrobatic movement.
I particularly like his use of the ropes in the final fight, wrapping up opponents and maneuvering himself around before his final one on one face off – which ends with more use of ropes!
The fights and the action is decent, but not the best I’ve seen. It’s just a very average movie in comparison to Jackie Chan’s other work. Check it out if you’re a Jackie Chan fan, otherwise look for another Chan movie.
Piece of Trivia: Yuen Biao makes a very quick cameo in this movie!
On DVD –
Region 1 (US & Canada)
Black Dragon (aka Miracles)
Region 2 (UK, Europe, etc)