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Jackie Chan Vs Jet Li

Discussion in 'Konoha Theatre' started by MartialHorror, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    Before I get into the sequel to my 'Schwarzenegger Vs Stallone' thread, why Jet Li? Why not Donnie Yen? While the latter might be the biggest kung fu star at the moment, his rise wasn't until after Jackie Chan had stepped down from the mantle. So I wouldn't say they were ever perceived as rivals. I also chose not to include Sammo Hung, because even though Hung was very important to the kung fu genre, a lot of his solo outings were flops. He didn't really become famous until after he started collaborating with Jackie Chan.

    But growing up, us kids were always asking who would win in a fight between Jet Li and Jackie Chan. We would get into arguments as to who had the better movies. We perceived them as rivals and it turns out that there was at least a little bit of bitterness between the men. Jackie Chan starred in a movie called "City Hunter" (it sucks) and feuded with the director, who would later on go do a film with Jet Li, called "High Rise"/"The Meltdown" (it also sucks). There is a character in it who is meant to be a parody of Jackie Chan, who was offended. Jet Li apparently had to apologize for appearing in the film. Nevertheless, they moved on and eventually collaborated in "The Forbidden Kingdom".

    Now I can't really try to decipher who had the more illustrious career here, because...it's Jackie Chan. This isn't like 'Stallone Vs Schwarzenegger' where you can make a compelling argument either way, because Jackie Chan was the biggest Chinese star of all time throughout the entire duration of his prime. Even now, his recent "Kung Fu Yoga" was his most successful film in China. Jet Li was always more of an...alternative to Jackie Chan. Whereas Chan favored comedy and played lovable characters, Li's films were edgier, violent and he portrayed characters who were more akin to anti-heroes than heroes.

    So really, this thread should be about your preferences. Growing up, I preferred Jet Li, as I thought he was a lot 'cooler'. He was my favorite martial arts star for a long time, although as an adult, I love them both for different reasons. Both have made some of the genres best, such as "Drunken Master II" and "Fist of Legend".

    I hadn't realized that Jet Li's box office draw used to be very inconsistent. We know that Jackie Chan had a harder time finding success in his early days, as he was being presented as the next 'Bruce Lee'. Jet Li didn't start until after Chan finally found fame, but his earlier days were somewhat easier thanks to his successful Shaolin-related films. However, Jackie became a titan during the 1980's, while Jet Li struggled. He only made a handful of films, including his directorial debut ("Born to Defense"), but they all either underperformed or flopped.

    Jet Li wouldn't become a real star until "Once Upon a Time in China" during the early 1990's, while...Jackie Chan remained the box office titan. Jet Li would go on to produce many of his best works during this period, but they weren't always successful. Even "Fist of Legend", which might be a contender for the BEST KUNG FU FLICK OF ALL TIME, underperformed. In fact, most of Li's films during the 1990's weren't box office hits (even if they didn't flop). He often had to fall back on "Once Upon a Time in China" and "Fong Sai-Yuk". Eventually, Jet Li did find stability in his box office draw. Unfortunately, during this time, Jackie was busy conquering Hollywood.

    Jet Li did develop a strong cult following in the west though, so even if films like "Black Mask" didn't perform exceptionally well over in the East, they found success on home video in the U.S. Jet Li also migrated to Hollywood for awhile, but Jackie remained the bigger star of the two. WITH THAT SAID, I might argue that Li had a little more longevity in the west. He never experienced a colossal financial failure like Jackie Chan did ("Around the World in 80 Days") and he was part of "The Expendables". Didn't he also get a video game? Both would eventually back away from Hollywood and Jet Li has more-or-less retired.

    Most of this post is just me amusing myself though. Jackie Chan has had more financial and critical success, while his legacy will be more enduring. But I don't feel like Jet Li was ever deliberately trying to surpass him, as his movies were so different. Even his comedies had a completely different flavor to them, so once again, I would say he was always an alternative.

    So who do you prefer?
     
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  2. Shiba D. Inu ( ° ͜ʖ͡°)╭∩╮

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  3. The Kamal Haasan Crazy Hour Well-Known Member

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    Li.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    J Chan is always playing someone who was locked up till adulthood by some relgious teacher. He is not character, more like some weird avatar of virtue.
     
  4. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    Different type of movies they specialised in. Li was more wuxia based than chan. Chan also specialised more on comedy other than weird bruce lee phase he went through. Everyone including himself hated it
     
  5. The Kamal Haasan Crazy Hour Well-Known Member

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    than weird bruce lee phase he went through.

    What?
     
  6. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    Yes Jackie Chan like most of asian cinema soon after Bruce Lee died tried to capitalise on his fame in the west. So they were plenty of knockoffs and look alikes Bruce Li, Dragon Lee etc That era became known as bruceploitation. Jackie was also part of it not as a look alike but being involved in serious movies unlike the comedic ones he is now known for
     
  7. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    Yeah, Jackie Chan's first attempt at stardom came when Lo Wei (who had directed "Fists of Fury") attempted to package him as 'the next Bruce Lee'. This meant that Jackie's earlier roles were designed for Bruce Lee, or a Bruce Lee-esque performer and they felt miscast. He appeared in "New Fists of Fury" and "Dragon Fist"- which Jackie said could've been good had Bruce Lee played his character. When that failed, Lo Wei attempted to diversify by putting him in a wuxia ("To Kill with Intrigue") and even casting him as a villain ("Killer Meteors"). He also experimented with comedy (I can't remember the name of the title, but it wasn't Jackie's type of comedy), but they kept bombing until out of frustration, Lo Wei loaned Jackie to Golden Harvest, who gave him some creative control. This lead to "Snake in the Eagles Shadow" and "Drunken Master", which finally utilized Jackie's potential to its fullest.

    Amusingly, Lo Wei did give Jackie some creative control when he did "Half a Loaf of Kung Fu", but he hated it and only released it after Jackie's first hits.
     
  8. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    There is also spiritual kung fu aka kung fu ghostbusters or some shit :skully

    Snake and crane arts of shaolin. Also shaolin wooden man :bookerskully Lo Wei was wylin
     
  9. Pocalypse Well-Known Member

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    Jet Li.

    I paid more attention to his films than Jackie Chan's. I couldn't get into Jackie's films really but the more serious tone of Jet Li's films were more to my liking. He also looked to me the better martial artist.

    I used to watch his films like a mad man because he was my absolute fav, renting out VHS tapes of all his stuff back in the days.
     
  10. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    That was the one comedy I was thinking. Say what you will about Lo Wei, at least his bad movies were weird. I remember "To Kill with Intrigue" having some ghost dude randomly show up, getting his hand cut off, and leaving with his hand...or am I recalling that correctly? It was so random though, without any bearing on the plot.

    "Killer Meteors" almost seems entirely comprised of shit like that, lol.
     
  11. mr_shadow Minister of State Security Moderator

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    I haven't seen enough of either's work to make a definitive judgement, but Hero (2002) is my favourite Chinese film of all time and a big reason I got interested in Warring States culture, so I'm partial to Li. :amuse

    Even though that movie turned out to be near the end of his action career. If you look at it knowing that he'd quit stunt work only four years later, you can see it as prophetic that Hero only has one fight scene that actually requires extensive "real" martial arts. The other ones are so stylized it could basically have been anyone. Although that might also be related to the fact that of the five actors, Li and Yen are the only ones who know martial arts in real life.

    Nameless vs Sky (Donnie Yen)


    Nameless vs Flying Snow (Maggie Cheung)


    Nameless vs Broken Sword (Tony Leung)


    Nameless vs Moon (Zhang Ziyi)

     
  12. Uncle Acid Well-Known Member

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    I consider both gods, so I can't decide. Both actors have been involved in movies I consider to be among my favourites, and both have some mediocre and truly awful films.

    I might've had to go with Jackie Chan because of the fucking stunts (especially in Police Story!!!), but then again the fantasy elements in a lot of Jet Li's late 80's and 90's movies (like Swordsman II!) just gets to me hard.


    Had you included Sammo Hung however I'd probably gone for him, even though he doesn't have the same amount of fantastic films in his filmography. But he is an incredible actor, incredible and extremely creative choreographer, and one hell of a director who truly dared to walk in a different path than others at the time. And whenever someone made something brilliant, he'd just say fuck it and make something even better. He truly knew how to get the best out of his actors, as well as himself. Top 5 director, top 5 actor and top 3 martial artist for me.
     
  13. ~VK~ The King

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    jackie chan is my nigga
     
  14. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    Sammo is a goat stunt coordinator. Yuen biao too. Which is funny since all 3 came from the same school with Jackie.
     
  15. The Kamal Haasan Crazy Hour Well-Known Member

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    His attmept at international fandom include two failed launches.

    First one with Battle Creek Brawl and the second one with James Glickenhaus's Protector.

    The Protector cut i saw was hilarioous. Jackie Chan is cursing all over the place, acting edgy as fuck like some 10 year old boozing and he goes to a whorehouse where he lays on the top of some table type thing while the hooker is supposed work her magic under her table with little chan sticking out trough a hole. it's fucking bizzarre.

    I mean look at this edgelord poster:



     
  16. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    I actually prefer "Fearless" over "Hero", even though the latter is probably the better movie...if that makes any sense.

    "Fist of Legend" is still, imo, his best movie.

    Jackie's best movie is probably "Drunken Master 2" (or "The Legend of Drunken Master" in the U.S), at least from my perspective. If you guys haven't seen it for awhile, you might want to check out "Operation Condor" (or "Armour of God II: Operation Condor"...not to be confused with "Operation Condor II: Armour of God", which is actually the first "Armour of God"). It has some of the best action scenes ever, even if it does suffer from some awkward racist stereotypes.

    I always felt Jet Li got a bad rep in the U.S for his acting abilities. His Hollywood productions usually presented him as stoic and serious, which coupled with his limited English, made him seem stiff and humorless. He actually could do drama and comedy in his native language pretty well. Jackie Chan didn't really get the same accusations because his movies focused on his comedic range.

    But as they've gotten older, Jackie Chan's dramatic performances seem to leave a bigger impact. I haven't seen that recent drama that apparently showcased the extent of Jet Li's range, but "Little Big Soldier" was Jackie at his dramatic best. That movie kind of teared me up.

    Yeah that's true. I guess Jet Li's initial debut in the west was much more successful. Jackie definitely had to pay his dues in both markets. I saw "Battlecreek Brawl" when I was younger, but I only remember parts of the climactic brawl. "The Protector" was pretty hilarious, as he sounds so uncomfortable when cursing. I don't know if I ever saw "Cannonball Run".
     
  17. Uncle Acid Well-Known Member

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    As far as actual acting within the realm of drama goes, I thought The Foreigner was Jackie Chan's best. He showcased a depth and a certain kind of emotion I never thought I'd ever see from him. That shit was good.



    Cannonball Run is a really cool films, though it's not a very good one. But it's really fun.
     
  18. Djomla Student

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    Jackie. I mean, man is the last Emperor of soul. Hard to top that.

     
  19. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    The fong sai yuk is fire. Especially the 2nd one. Also love The evil cult even though its super unfaithful to the source material. Hurt we never got a sequel

    Legend of the red dragon :bury shit Tai chi master too
     
  20. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    "Legend of the Red Dragon" has the best bad dubbing of all time.
     
  21. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    I have seen worse but holy shit is it bad :lmao

    Especially when its the kids talking :bookerskully
     
  22. The Kamal Haasan Crazy Hour Well-Known Member

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    How does it compare to his acting in the Karate Kid remake?
     
  23. Huey Freeman The Gent

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    Chan and it’s not even close for me.
    Who am I, Rumble in then Bronx and Druken Master all surpass Li’s work. Chan fighting style is more like “what will he do next” we already knew what Li was bringing to the table.
     
  24. Huey Freeman The Gent

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    Before any of you @me for Who am I.

    Jackie Chan slide on a fucking skyscraper for a C rated vhs movie to entertain us. This mother fucker give no fucks to lady death meanwhile we got to listen to the bad voice overs of Jet Li
     
  25. wibisana still newbie

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    As kid i like Li better
    as adult who loves comedy i like Chan better (not to mention how much bone he broke for the movie)

    Tho at personal level. I dont like Jackie Chan. He is hypocrite.

    Idk much about Li. So there is that.


    I do admire Chan sacrifice and effort to make entertainment.
    He is No.1 for me
     
  26. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

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    This is an interesting point. Jackie's choreography had a feeling of spontaneity to it that no one else has ever really been able to pull off.
     
  27. Vault Time: Donut of the heart

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    Chan has superior stunt work that goes without saying since he had a team with goats like sammo and yuen biao. :oldshrug Part of the stunt work was using the environment as a tool for enhancing the action and comedy.
     
  28. mob Ningen destroyer

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    Jackie Chan got this, he is the real national treasure of PRC:wow
     
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  29. StarlightAshley Banned

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    Um I haven't seen a lot of Jet Li movies I only ever saw 1 and I don't remember what it's called.
    I have seen lots of Jackie Chan though, mostly because I loved the Jackie Chan adventures cartoon. But as far as I can tell Jet Li was the more impressive martial artist. Jackie Chan was a very good acrobat and stunt man in his movies and always uses props and things from his environment to help him in the fight to make it interesting and comedic, but that was basically his gimmick. Jet Li had no gimmicks hes just a really fast and crazy martial artist. :iria:iria
     
  30. The Kamal Haasan Crazy Hour Well-Known Member

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    What will he do next for an entire career becomes kind off a schtick.

    i got ninjad and did not notice. whatever.
     
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