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    New RepublicRyu Spaeth1/8/1914 min
    9 reads2 comments
    8.5
    New Republic
    9 reads
    8.5
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    • Pegeen
      Top reader this weekReading streakScoutScribe
      4 months ago

      I found this disturbing and sad. I think Jackie Chan’s dreadful childhood shaped his life as the consummate “performer.” His martial arts is death defying and exciting but what a price to pay. Maybe he is truly happy, who am I to say?

    • DellwoodBarker
      Top reader this weekReading streakScoutScribe
      4 months ago

      Police Story (1985), one of his best movies, concludes with an epic fight scene in a mega department store, that ubiquitous symbol of Hong Kong’s consumer economy. Against a backdrop of designer clothes and jewelry and electronics, Chan fights a whole gang of bad guys, sending them flying into mannequins and tumbling down escalators. There is shattered glass everywhere as bodies slam through display cases and storefronts. At one point, inexplicably, a motorcycle makes an appearance, careening through more panes of glass. When it looks like the head of the gang is about to get away, Chan leaps from the store’s top story onto a giant pole festooned with lights, sliding all the way down in a shower of electric sparks. (In his memoir he reveals he shouted the words “I die!” as he jumped.) He crashes into more glass at the bottom, and in one unbroken motion gets up and keeps fighting.

      It remains a breathtaking scene, combining everything audiences have come to love about Jackie Chan: athleticism, derring-do, an everyman’s goodness. But there is something disturbing about it, too, the way Chan is both destroying and being destroyed by this mall. There is blood on his face, after all. And the blood is real.