Kiss of the Dragon
Kiss of the Dragon takes the most common plot in action movies, and fills
up the spare time with some really cool fight sequences.
China's top secret agent (Jet Li) is sent to Paris to help the government,
and ends up being framed for murder. So for the rest of the movie, he
has to take on the bad guys in order to clear his name.
That's the plot. Sound familiar?
But the point of a Jet Li movie (or a Jackie Chan movie, for that matter)
is not creativity; it's entertainment. Kiss of the Dragon delivers entertainment,
even if it's mindless (but then, that's often the best kind).
With the exception of Lethal Weapon 4, I'd never seen a Jet Li movie
before Kiss of the Dragon.I'd heard he was fast, and a great martial artist,
but I really had no idea.
The supporting cast includes Bridget Fonda and Tcheky Karyo, and both
are very good. Karyo plays a great villain, and I hope to see more of
him in the future. Jet Li is fortunately not known for his acting chops,
because he doesn't really have any. But what he lacks as a thespian he
makes up for as a martial artist.
Kiss of the Dragon is a fun movie, as long as you can get around the
cheap plot and slow points. The action more than makes up for it.
Fox has, once again, done a fine job on the DVD. It doesn't compare to
Planet of the Apes or Moulin Rouge, but it wasn't as big a movie. It still
has a great transfer and enough extras to keep you occupied.
The picture, shown in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen, is pretty clear,
but the colors seem a little too dark at some points. That may be what
the director wanted, though. Except for the darkness, the quality of the
video is exceptional.
The 5.1 is always nice to have for a movie like this. At the times when
Li is being chased and shot at, it sounds like the bullets are coming
from all around you. It's done very well, and without it, the movie wouldn't
have been as exciting.
There are five featurettes on the disc, two of which are very good. The
Jet Li Featurette talks about the man himself, and how he got his start
in the business, his training, etc. The Fight Choreographer Cory Yuen
Featurette is also fairly good, basically doing the same for Yuen as the
Jet Li Featurette did for Li. A martial arts demo for the police gymnasium
fight is also included, but not very thorough. The other two featurettes
are "On the Set Action" and "Featurette." The latter is just the typical
PR fluff, while the former allows you to see the action as it looked behind-the-scenes.
There is also a commentary by director Chris Nahon, Bridget Fonda and
Jet Li, storyboard to film comparisons, and the trailer.
Kiss of the Dragon, from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
98 minutes, anamorphic widescreen (2.35:1) 16X9 enhanced, 5.1 Dolby Digital
Starring Jet Li, Bridget Fonda and Tcheky Karyo
Produced by Luc Besson, Jet Li, Steven Chasman, Happy Walters
Screenplay by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen
Directed by Chris Nahon
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