Chinese Zodiac (Armour of God III) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Action, Comedy
Director: Jackie Chan
Distributor: Splendid Film

Chinese Zodiac (Armour of God III) – Movie Review

Site Score
6.1
Good: Subtle wink to his older movies, Great action scenes
Bad: Horrible dub, Lack of details
User Score
7.0
(1 votes)
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Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Jackie Chan, a legend amongst movie stars with over a hundred credits on his name. Having started his movie career in the 60’s, he decided it’s time to retire from the action scene. We personally hope it’s not true. Chinese Zodiac is the third installment of the Armour of God series. Even though the movies have nothing to do with each other, this is Jackie Chan’s homage to the days of yore, when movies were still a tad different. Sadly, this trip down memory lane might only be a thing for those who loved his older movies.

Chinese-Zodiac 1

The story in Chinese Zodiac is about the heads of the twelve zodiac statues that have been stolen from China more than 100 years ago. Lately some of these heads have been popping up on auctions and they have been selling for millions of dollars, making them interesting pieces to find and sell.

This brings us to JC a.k.a. the Asian Hawk, who specializes in retrieving valuable art objects for his employers, and thus earn himself a decent sum of money when doing so. This time he receives the assignment of retrieving the unsold/undiscovered zodiac heads. To achieve this task it takes JC and his ‘recovery’ team all the way to France for their first set of clues.

Chinese Zodiac is actually a fairly hard movie to talk about, without spoiling the entire plot. In essence it’s a typical old school Jackie Chan movie where the plot isn’t all that thick but the action proves to be worthwhile.
The structure of the already thin plot is brought to you in a fairly chaotic matter throughout the first half of the movie. Comical elements seem to be more important than actual details of what is going on. Halfway through you will get the basic plot and you will notice this movie is more a reference to Jackie Chan’s older movies than the actual creation of a new epic tale that will become a classic in the long run.

Having a chaotic start of the movie also makes room for a ‘flow’ that isn’t quite up to par of what we’re used to nowadays. You’ll constantly be hoping to gain a bit more information about what is actually going on, that certain parts of the movie come across as useless or even fairly tedious to watch through. All of this is mainly because of the fact you miss some essential details concerning JC as well as his team.

The sound of the movie is also a subtle wink to his older movies, seeing a lot of the voices are dubbed and are totally not in sync with the lip movement of the characters. Again this is something we are not used in modern movies, but for those who have been following Jackie Chan’s career since the break of dawn will not get bothered that quickly. Nonetheless, for those who are not used to such ‘techniques’ might get annoyed and give up on the movie after a while, seeing some scenes are fairly horribly done.
Luckily the music is done in a way that suits the movie and gives us an extra portion of tension during the well performed action scenes.

chinese zodiac 2

Seeing the movie broke the world record of most stunts performed by a single actor, Chinese Zodiac will contain a lot of great fights as well as impressive stunts. This alone makes the movie a fun watch for action movie enthusiasts.

Overall the cast will not present us with that many known names, except for Oliver Platt, which you might not know by name but surely you will recognize him immediately after you see him. That being said, the actors in Chinese Zodiac live up to the true ‘Jackie Chan feeling’ and do a great job performing their roles.

A portion of a movie that is not often discussed are the credits, however in this case it’s worth mentioning that the credits are fun to watch. You will be able to see a lot of scenes from all the movies Jackie performed in and this might be the true trip down memory lane this movie has in store for you.

Conclusion

Chinese Zodiac is a movie for the true Jackie Chan enthusiasts that want to travel back in time to his earlier movies. The movie offers great action scenes as well as impressive stunts for you to watch, but it leaves you wanting more when it comes to the overall storyline. If you are able to see through a thin plot and a sometimes horrible dub, you’ll still enjoy watching through this movie. (It’s fair to say, that this movie might earn a higher score, for those who loved movies like ‘Rumble in the Bronx’)

Note: Chinese Zodiac is currently available on DVD/Blu-Ray

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Chinese Zodiac (Armour of God III) - Movie Review, 7.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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