Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Review

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Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Review | by

Recommended Audience: Fans of Jackie Chan 成龙, Johnny Knoxville 约翰尼·诺克斯维尔, Bingbing Fan 范冰冰, Eric Tsang 曾志伟, Winston Chao 赵文瑄, Zoe Zhang Lanxin 张蓝心, Yeon Jung-hoon 延政勳, Eve Torres and action comedy movie fans

Skiptrace Movie Poster

Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Synopsis

Skiptrace follows Bennie Chan (Jackie Chan), a Hong Kong detective who has been tracking notorious crime boss Victor Wong for over a decade. When Bennie’s goddaughter Samantha (Bingbing Fan) gets into trouble with Wong’s crime syndicate, Bennie must track down the man whose actions got her there: the fast-talking American gambler Connor Watts (Johnny Knoxville). Skiptrace Movie stillsBennie soon discovers, however, that in bringing Connor back to Hong Kong he’s ensuring more than his goddaughter’s fate; Connor also possesses knowledge about Victor Wong that, if exposed, could finally bring the corrupt businessman to justice. As Bennie races against the clock to return with Connor to Hong Kong, the unlikely pair embarks on an entertaining and perilous adventure that spans from the mountains of Mongolia to the dunes of the Gobi desert.

Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Viewer Rating: 3/5 ***

Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Review:

Before reading this review, here’s a disclaimer, if you are a fan of Jackie Chan’s film, this is absolutely made by Jackie Chan, for Jackie Chan’s fans-film. You will get to see many of his signature moves and stunts, as well as beautiful scenery from different parts of China. Also, for the longest time, I thought Johnny Knoxville looked like Zac Efron in the movie poster (above). Perhaps it’s like what Conner Watts said, “All white guys look the same”.
Skiptrace Jackie Chan stuntsSadly, those were all the good points I can think at this moment as the film wasn’t exactly my-type of comedy. I wasn’t laughing as much as I thought I would, maybe it was due to the fact that most of the jokes were already revealed in the trailer. The rest (of the jokes) simply don’t make sense (to me). Most of the characters were stereotyped and the plot was, somehow predictable as well (except for the last part). Jackie Chan’s trademark fight sequences made the otherwise irrational plot slightly more interesting.

Eve Torres_Zhang Lan XinThen comes the fights by the femme fatales in the film. I had higher expectation for Zhang Lan Xin (left) who played the antagonist’s sidekick after her recent exposure on several China’s variety show as martial expert. Eve Torres had a slightly upper hand with the twist in her position as well as her fight with Jackie Chan. The highly anticipated fight between them was somehow lacklustre. It felt rushed and as if the film can’t wait to end.

Fan Bing bing Johnny KnoxvilleI love Fan Bingbing’s grace and elegance. But the encounter between Samantha (Fan Bingbing) and Conner Watts (Johnny Knoxville) was poorly edited. They meet in a casino, and when he stole her VIP access card and took off, there will odd flashbacks of them sharing kisses (since when), and they got together in the end, even though Conner didn’t do anything to save the damsel.Jackie Chan Skiptrace cartThe worst part, was actually the language. It wasn’t because 90% of the film was spoken in English, it was because English was spouted in the oddest time within the oddest group of Chinese that you couldn’t help but wonder if the movie was filmed twice in two languages and randomly edited. When the Russians spoke in English, it was passable albeit the heavy accent, but when the Mongolian tribes in the middle of nowhere spoke in English, it was jaw-dropping ridiculous.

There will be moments when the Chinese actors were alone and spout funny English (it would make more sense if they were conversing in Mandarin amongst themselves). Worse, the inconsistency was consistent in their scenes and frames. They don’t speak Singlish like Singaporeans, with mixture of English and Mandarin in one sentence, the actors complete their sentences in either English or Mandarin before changing.

Jackie Chan MongoliaIf it’s of any comfort, Skiptrace has loads of action but not violence (I’m not a fan of violence), something suitable for family to watch and maybe for youths to admire the scenic views and unknown Chinese festivals. Oh ya, go catch it if you want to hear Jackie Chan sing Adele’s Rolling In The Deep!

Do You Know?

Kwok-Hung ChanJackie Chan’s cinematographer Chan Kwok-Hung (陈国雄) was drowned on December 16, 2014 while filming Skiptrace. The crew was on a sampan when the boar capsized. All 8 people fell into the sea, and 7 of them swam back to the bank. 51 year old Chan did not know how to swim. Jackie Chan jumped in to try and save him, but as the sky was dark and there was no diving equipments, Chan was only rescued an hour later by the fire rescue, but he was already drowned.

Jacky-Chan-Fan-Bingbing-and-Renny-HarlinSam Fell was replaced by Director Renny Harlin. Jackie Chan and Renny Harlin previously collaborated in another project “Nosebleed” in 2001 which was shelved. It was supposed to be the only Hollywood film to allow Chan to use his signature 1-2 “Super Stunts” per film to new heights to excite American Audiences. The team had initially scheduled filming a fight scene on the roof of the World Trade Center the morning of the 9/11 attacks. Jackie Chan came up with new stunt choreography using a window washing lift in that show but the film was withdrawn due to the 9/11 terror.

Seann William Scott_Johnny_KnoxvilleSeann William Scott was set to star as Connor Watts but dropped out. Johnny Knoxville replaced him and even requested for more action sequences to be included for him.

The Mandarin/Chinese song that Johnny Knoxville sang (seen on trailer) was Jackie Chan’s song(明明白白我的心)from 1991.

Skiptrace Mud FestivalFor the “mud festival” (泼泥节) scene in the film, more than 150 extras have to be soaked in the mud for 1 whole day. Jackie Chan and Johnny joined in too.

Jackie-Chan The Karate KidThis film was inspired because The Karate Kid (功夫梦) was well received by the West, and many people commended the beautiful scenery in China. Hence Jackie Chan decided to bring some of the beautiful and scenic geographical locations in China to the west. The movie was filmed in Beijing, Guangxi, Mongolia, Hong Kong, Macau and Russia.

Jackie Chan Fan BingbingThis was not the first time Jackie Chan and Bingbing Fan worked together. They acted in 2004 The Twins Effect II (千机变II花都大战), 2009 Shinjuku Incident (新宿事件) and 2011 Shaolin (新少林寺).

Behind The Scenes and Interviews

Check out Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬)  Official Micro Site.
Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) is out in cinemas on 22 July 2016.

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*Disclosure: No monetary compensation was received for the movie review.

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» Movie Review » Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Review
On July 18, 2016

28 Responses to Skiptrace (绝地逃亡‬‬) Movie Review

  1. […] holes aside, the film managed to entertain me more than Jackie Chan’s Skiptrace and Zhang Jing Chu actually awed me with her elegance and action. She’s smart, she sexy and […]

  2. […] Chan is back. Really. I wasn’t too impressed with Jackie Chan’s recent films (say, Skiptrace?) and was quite disappointed with the lacklustre comedy performance, making me wonder if I’ve […]

  3. buandit says:

    Do you know what is the title of west song when connor first meet with samantha in the casino?

  4. Jason Panuelos says:

    This looks like yet another funny but action packed film like any Jackie Chan movie I know. Haha! 😀

  5. macan74 says:

    for me this is a good Jackie Chan movie. I am almos always disappointed when I come out of a theatre watching his movies lately.

    Shinjuku Incident, The Last Police Story are great, but they are not a Jackie Chan movie. they are movies that Jackie Chan starred in

    The Medallion, The Myth, CZ 12, Dragon Blade are not a Jackie Chan movie, even though they use the basic formula of a Jackie Chan movie. They rely too much on wirework and the jokes are too sparse. In Skiptrace, he is back to his normal surroundings and his action scenes are better because of it (seeing Jackie suddenly flies in Th Medallion or The Myth puts me off as it is not the kind of Jackie that I know. He needs to be trapped in a building and tries to find his way out of the mess he is in). I realize that he’s getting older and has to slow down, but he doesn’t need to do the impossible.

    Johnny Knoxville is quite good in it. He may not produce a performance worthy of winning any awards any time soon, but his portrayal of aconnor Watts is quite good. Owen Wilsom and Chris Tucker are sometimes extremely annoying or spout something extremely mean or racist. The scenes when Chan and Knoxville are quite fun (on the contrary even though I enjoy The Rush Hour trilogy, Chris Tucker often said things that is hurtful in order to get laughs).

  6. Jackie Chan’s movie always got very high standard.. I’m looking forward to watch this one..

  7. Shub says:

    Jackie Chan??!! Then must watch…All his movies are generally so much fun.

  8. Zwitsy says:

    I love Jackie Chan’s movies. I am just not sure if I’ll love this as per your review. But nonetheless, this might be my cup of tea. 🙂 On the side note, it is so saddening that while filming, the tragedy took one of Chan’s team’s life. 🙁

  9. franckxethee says:

    I haven’t watched a Jackie Chan movie for the longest time. I would love to see this one especially he featured some of the wonderful spots in China.

  10. I am a big Jackie Chan fan.Love to see his every movie.This seems another nice movie of him.

  11. Am a huge fan of Jacky Chan movies! A pity you feel it’s not as funny or interesting this time. Love that couple shot of Jacky and Bing Bing Fan! Hope I can catch this movie.

  12. Bhushavali says:

    The basic story plot kinda reminds me of Rush Hour 2! Kinda formula for Jackie Chan persona I guess!!

  13. Elizabeth O. says:

    I think Jackie Chan is great but his humor might be a little too old school for today’s generation. I haven’t seen the film but I expect there’s going to be a lot of Jackie Chan’s styles incorporated in it.

  14. rochkirstin says:

    I just saw the movie poster last Friday when I was driving home. I thought Jackie Chan mustn’t be too old to make another signature movie like this. It’s a must-watch for his fans because of the stunts.

  15. Apdm says:

    Watched this yesterday. So far,the story is predictable from start of the story. I know that his friend is the antagonist.

  16. Mia Foo says:

    i watched this! once a jackie fan, always a jackie fan you know. but i have to say this was kind of disappointing. the part where bennie suddenly started singing rolling in the deep was weird enough, and having the entire mongolian tribe joining him was just… cringeworthy. i think the only saving grace for this movie was them showing the NG scenes in the credits.

  17. Fred says:

    Never heard of this movie yet. No trailers about it in theaters now. This looks like typical Jackie Chan action comedy, with some toilet humor, based on the pics. I think we will still go watch this in case it shows in our city.

  18. Widya says:

    Do you know what is the title of mandarin song that enemies (victor wong’s people) sang in the festival?

  19. Gigi M. says:

    Well, I am a fan of Jackie Chan films. 🙂 His movies are usually wholesome and he seems like a good guy. Based on your review it sounds like I may just have to wait until it comes out in DVD.

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