LowComDom Performances Presents
Film Review - Shanghai Noon
Yee Haw! Here's a summer flick with a lot of kick!
Take Jackie Chan out of Hong Kong and shove him into the old west. It's a western, but it's also an Eastern. Shanghai Noon is the tale of Imperial Guard Chon Wang sent to Nevada to pay the ransom of a Princess. The guard (Chan) is pure of mind, physically fit, and completely out of his element.
Enter Roy O'Bannon (Owen Wilson), and thief and a card cheat who happens to run into Wang during a train robbery. These two start off on the wrong foot, but circumstance brings them together as friends.
This is a simple film, and that's okay. Chan is his normal self, a Kung Fu expert playing a little bit of clown. Owen Wilson's comic relief is fun, but sometimes gets in the way. Ultimately, this is Chan's movie, and he manages to stretch his genre a bit.
In fact what is worth noting is the written comedy is as good as Chan's physical antics. Much of the dialog of the American Indians are real side-splitters. It's all subtitled, but the Indians have the best lines.
The only real problem with Shanghai Noon is that it is twenty minutes too long. There is a real sense of running out of gas before the climatic end. Other than that and a huge costume flub (Chan arrives in America wearing a General's uniform, not an Imperial Guard's) Shanghai Noon is just a fun movie. This is a western without the bitterness of a Clint Eastwood Movie.