So technically my favorite Asian films are the Rurouni Kenshin trilogy, but because I think I'm going to end up mentioning them later on in the 30 day challenge, I decided to choose my favorite Chinese Film (since the Rurouni Kenshin films are Japanese).
My favorite Chinese movie is Little, Big Soldier, an obscure gem of a film that I discovered years ago on Netflix (thank you Netflix for your International Movie section. Much appreciated!). This film stars Jackie Chan with a story that, apparently, he’d been imagining for years.
|Jackie Chan as Big Soldier|
The story is set in The Warring States Period of China (476-221 BC) when a young general (Wang Leehom) is captured by an opportunistic soldier of a rival state (Jackie Chan) who plans to turn him in for a big reward. Only mayhem ensues as other people are after the young general too – except they just want him dead.
Out of the half dozen Jackie Chan films I’ve seen, this is my favorite. The setting, cinematography and costumes are gorgeous, the story is short yet manages to hit the emotional points it needs to, and it’s humorous and of course action packed with great fight choreography.
|Wang Leehom as Little General|
Jackie Chan is effortless here and I love his character – a guy worn out by war, who merely wants to survive and build a farm with the reward he collects on the general’s head. Originally Jackie had intended to play the "young general" but by the time he got around to making this film, he didn't feel he was the right age for the character. So Wang Leehom was chosen; and he's really perfect as the stern, youthful general. The bickering and fighting between the general and soldier is so much fun and what I really love best about this film. I really enjoyed everything in Little, Big Soldier – and if only it had been longer, I probably would’ve been even happier.