Shanghai Knights

Last updated
Shanghai Knights
Shanghai knights.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by David Dobkin
Produced by
Screenplay by
Based onCharacters
by Alfred Gough
Miles Millar
Starring
Music by Randy Edelman
Cinematography Adrian Biddle
Edited byMalcolm Campbell
Production
companies
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures
Release date
  • February 7, 2003 (2003-02-07)
Running time
114 minutes [1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$50 million [2]
Box office$88.3 million [2]

Shanghai Knights is a 2003 American martial arts action comedy film. It is the sequel to Shanghai Noon . Directed by David Dobkin and written by Alfred Gough and Miles Millar, it stars Jackie Chan, Owen Wilson, Donnie Yen and Aidan Gillen. It was released on February 7, 2003.

Contents

Plot

In 1887, Lord Nelson Rathbone leads a band of Boxers into the Forbidden City, killing the Keeper of the Imperial Seal of China and stealing the seal. With his dying breath, the Keeper gives his daughter, Chon Lin, a puzzle box for her brother, Sheriff Chon Wang.

In Carson City, Nevada, Wang has captured an impressive array of fugitives. Wang receives the box and a letter from Lin telling him of their father's death and that she has tracked the murderer to London.

Wang travels to New York City to find his old partner Roy O'Bannon and collect his share of their gold so that he can buy passage to London. Roy has left law enforcement, broken off his marriage, invested all their gold in the Zeppelin, and is now a waiter and part-time gigolo. After an aborted attempt at prostitution to pay for tickets, the pair ship themselves to London in a crate.

In London, Roy's pocket is picked by a youth named Charlie Chaplin. After a struggle between Roy, Wang, Charlie, and a gang angered by Charlie stealing on their turf, they are arrested. In Scotland Yard, Inspector Artie Doyle thanks the two for defeating the Fleet Street gang. When they ask about Lin, Artie shows them she is in custody, having attempted to kill Lord Rathbone. Roy is instantly smitten with Lin and gives her a deck of playing cards as a good luck charm. Wang and Roy encounter Charlie. Breaking into an estate for shelter, they find an invitation to a gala at Buckingham Palace.

Roy and Wang infiltrate the gala in disguise: Roy as Major General "Sherlock Holmes" (a name he derives from the face of a clock) and Wang as the "Maharaja of Nevada". Wang and Roy follow Rathbone to a private library, where he slips through a secret passage. Wang finds the seal box, but the seal itself is gone and they are attacked by guards. Lin, having used Roy's playing cards to pick the lock on her cell, arrives and saves Roy. The three see Rathbone give the Imperial Seal to Wu Chow, the illegitimate brother of the Emperor of China. Charlie steals it. Rathbone escapes.

At a brothel, Roy overhears Wang try to convince Lin that Roy is an unsuitable husband, even telling her of his gigolo history and suspected infertility. Wang soothes Roy's feelings of betrayal by treating him to a pillow fight with the brothel staff. Wang, Roy, and Lin are found and captured by Rathbone, who reveals his plan: In exchange for the seal, Wu Chow will kill the British royal family and frame Lin. As tenth in line for the throne, Rathbone will then become king. Awaiting death, Roy confesses he spent most of his fortune publishing novels such as Roy O'Bannon Vs. The Mummy, in which Wang is portrayed as a cowardly sidekick. The two are reconciled and Wang says he will not stand between him and Lin. He frees himself and saves Roy.

Wong and Roy consult Artie about Charlie's location. Artie deduces from a hat he dropped that Charlie is at Madame Tussauds. They save him from the Boxers but lose the seal and are captured by police. Charlie rescues them. They save the royal family from Wu Chow, whom Lin kills with a rocket. The three pursue Rathbone to the top of Big Ben. Roy is thrown off but hangs onto the clock face, while Wang is hopelessly outmatched at swordplay by Rathbone, who repeatedly spares his life so as to prolong their duel. Wang gives up on trying to outright defeat Rathbone, instead severing the support ropes for their platform. Roy catches Wang as Rathbone falls to his death.

Roy, Wang, and Artie are knighted. Artie decides to write stories, and asks Roy for use of the "Sherlock Holmes" name. Wang opens the box his father sent him to find a message reminding him of the importance of family. Roy proposes that he and Wang go to Hollywood to join the new motion picture industry. Charlie stows away as they drive off.

Cast

Jackie Chan Stunt Team

Production

Director David Dobkin was personally chosen by Jackie Chan. Dobkin had a difficult time choosing a suitable Asian actress who could do movement work, emote well and speak excellent English. He then saw clips of Fann Wong's videos "Wo lai ye" (2001) and "Qing she yu bai she" (2001) and requested to audition her in London, which she did attend. She subsequently got the role and her number of scenes was increased by thirty percent.

Aside from establishing shots of iconic English landmarks, including The House of Lords, Buckingham Palace and Madame Tussaud's, the scenes in London were largely filmed in Prague, Czech Republic from February 4 to June 21, 2002. [3] [4]

Reception

The film received mixed reviews from critics, with some highlighting the chemistry between Chan and Wilson, the action sequences, and the fun nature of the film, but lamenting the plot. On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 66% based on 151 reviews. [5] On Metacritic the film has a score of 58 out of 100, based on reviews from 33 critics. [6] Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore gave the film a grade "B+" on scale of A to F. [7]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun Times gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, calling it "fun in a broad, genial way", but disapproved of the "entirely arbitrary" plot. [8] Joe Leydon of Variety found it better than its predecessor: "A hugely entertaining and more lavishly mounted follow-up to 2000's Shanghai Noon, the high-concept East-meets-Western that first teamed [the] top-billed duo pic rides even taller in the saddle as a fleet and funny crowd-pleaser." [9] Elvis Mitchell of The New York Times gave a positive review, singling out Chan's fight sequences and Wilson's performance, noting how "Wilson gets to steal a part of the movie that Chan is smart enough not to want." Mitchell also praised the "bluntly gorgeous" cinematography, and said Chan's reputation is "resuscitated in the rousing, cheerful sequel", calling it "one of his best." [10] Nathan Rabin of The A.V. Club also praised the chemistry between the two leads, writing, "Chan [...] found the perfect screen buddy in Wilson." Rabin criticized the "thin" plot, but found "there's a greatest-hits element" to Chan's fight scenes. [11]

Planned sequel

A third film was meant to be produced under the title Shanghai Dawn. Plans for the film were posted on Jackie Chan's website, but after some news of casting and production plans, no film has been produced.[ citation needed ] While unconfirmed, it is speculated that the project has been halted indefinitely as there is no news nor a release date.[ citation needed ] In a February 7, 2003, interview, Owen Wilson said: "We're talking about it maybe starting in Hollywood and then going from there to Africa or the Pyramids ... I feel like we have the freedom to take them anywhere in time we want."[ citation needed ]

On May 14, 2015, MGM announced that they are moving forward with Shanghai Dawn. Jackie Chan, Lucy Liu, Owen Wilson and Fann Wong are expected to reprise their roles as Chon Wang, Princess Pei-Pei, Roy O'Bannon and Chon Lin respectively. [12] In September 2016, Jared Hess signed on as director for the film while both Millar and Gough will develop a screen story with Theodore Riley and Aaron Buchsbaum writing the script for the film. [13] [14]

In November 2016, Gough said the third film will be set in China because Chan "wants to showcase China in the way that the first film showcased the old West." Gough added that Chan and Wilson also have a hand in the creative process, saying "With those films, the collaboration of Jackie and Owen comes out on screen as they get along very well. With that in mind, you want to get their input in the story phase, so that when we got to script, it's based into the DNA of the story." [15]

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References

  1. "SHANGHAI KNIGHTS | British Board of Film Classification". BBFC.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  2. 1 2 "Shanghai Knights (2003) - Financial Information". The Numbers.
  3. "'Shanghai' wraps". Variety . June 26, 2002. Archived from the original on April 6, 2017. Retrieved April 6, 2017.
  4. "CZECH REPUBLIC: JACKIE CHAN FILMS "SHANGHAI KNIGHTS" ON LOCATION IN PRAGUE". ITN. May 16, 2002. Archived from the original on April 6, 2017. Retrieved April 6, 2017.
  5. "Shanghai Knights". Rotten Tomatoes . Retrieved 2019-08-08.
  6. "Shanghai Knights". Metacritic . Retrieved 2019-08-08.
  7. "Cinemascore". Archived from the original on 2018-12-20.
  8. Ebert, Roger (February 7, 2003). "Shanghai Knights Movie Review (2003)". Chicago Sun Times .
  9. Leydon, Joe (January 26, 2003). "Shanghai Knights". Variety .
  10. Mitchell, Elvis (February 7, 2003). "FILM REVIEW; Galahad in Shining Cowboy Duds". The New York Times . Retrieved 8 August 2019.
  11. Rabin, Nathan (2003-03-14). "Shanghai Knights". The A.V. Club .
  12. Perry, Spencer (2015-05-14). "MGM Moving Forward with Shanghai Dawn, Starring Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson". ComingSoon.net. Retrieved 2015-07-08.
  13. "Shanghai Dawn | News | Movies - Empire". gb: Empireonline.com. 2003-02-20. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  14. Kit, Borys (September 6, 2016). "'Napoleon Dynamite' Director Jared Hess Tackling 'Shanghai Noon' Sequel (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter.
  15. Swinson, Brock (November 23, 2016). "Into the Badlands: Blood-splattered Heroes and the One Degree of Jackie Chan". Creative Screenwriting.