88 Films in the UK continue to treat Jackie Chan fans with new remastered Blu ray releases of some of his classic movies and have just given us a great 2 disc special edition of Dragon’s Forever.
This is the last film to star all the 3 Dragons, Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao and Sammo Hung in a tale of a crooked factory owner who is poisoning the local fisheries but behind closed doors is using it as just a cover for a drug-smuggling operation. Jackie Chan plays a lawyer who is hired to defend the chemical company when it is taken to court for poisoning offences. He hires both Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao to help him find out about the fish farm, but things don’t go to plan when Sammo and Jackie fall for the fishery owner and her daughter and things get deadly serious when the drug operation is uncovered.
Hong Kong action comedy at its best, with a decent story, great characters and superb choreography it is no wonder this is one of the trio’s favourite collaborations. The supporting cast of actors all help, Yuen Wah is great as the devious factory owner and Benny Urquidez is back again to fight Jackie Chan in the all-action finale. Jackie gets to look his best as he always does under Sammo’s direction and even Yuen Biao shines as a slightly bonkers sidekick.
Dragon’s Forever has been released on DVD in the UK a few years ago by Hong Kong Legends as a superb 2 disc SE, but this release, especially the quality of the transfer is even better. First you get 3 cuts of the film, the HK theatrical cut (94 mins), the longer Japanese cut (98 mins) and the English export version (94 mins). The 4K remastered restorations looks superb with fantastic detail and colour. The longer Japanese version has two scenes of Yuen Biao visiting the psychiatrist and are essential to the plot as it gives reasons for his behaviour later in the film. Also this version has outtakes at the end.
Lots of audio options available including original Cantonese mono, 5.1 remix and English dubbed tracks. Extras are plentiful and include a fun and info-packed Audio Commentary by Hong Kong cinema experts Mike Leeder and Arne Venema, Benny Forever: Interview with Benny “The Jet” Urquidez, Discussing Dragons Forever: Interview with David Desser, Hong Kong Cinema Forever: Interview with Mike Leeder, Working with the Dragons: Interview with Jude Poyer, The Legacy of Dragons Forever Featurette with today’s actors & martial artists including Troy Sandford, Chris Jones, Ross Boyask, Maria Tran, Mike Leeder, Jean-Paul Ly, Mark Strange, Mike Moeller, George Clarke, Jude Poyer & Steve Lawson and also interviews with Brad Allen, Joe Eigo, Andy Cheng and Billy Chow.
Lastly there are deleted scenes, Outtakes, Trailers an excellent booklet full of great and rare picture and a cool slipcase with artwork by the very talented “Kung Fu Bob” O’Brien.
A 5 star release of a classic film, a must buy.
FILM – 9 PICTURE – 9 AUDIO – 8 EXTRAS – 10