The Protector Cover Now it has been known that certain actors and certain directors work so well together, over time they constantly want to make more films with each other as well. However, it has been known that the opposite is also true. As seen in the following 91 minute movie made in 1985. It was Directed by James Glickenhaus; and Starred: Jackie Chan, Danny Aiello, Roy Chiao, with Saun Ellis.

The Protector

Over the last couple of days I can't help but wonder where Harold Ko (Roy Chiao) could be hiding, Danny (Danny Aiello)? I mean, when our bosses back in New York first instructed us to track him down for abducting the debutante -- Laura Shapiro (Saun Ellis) -- a part of me was hoping we'd get our hands on him before he fled for his native Hong Kong.

But no. It didn't turn out like that, did it partner? Somehow this drug smuggling scumbag managed to get away from us, and now we find ourselves in Hong Kong like a right couple of Peking ducks!

So I tell you what. How about we start looking for him by going to that massage parlor which massages parts other massage parlors fail to reach? Hint-Hint! And if that don't work out for us -- which it most probably won't -- why don't we alight for a short while with an old mate of mine over by the harbor? As you never know. He might be able to point us the the right direction! Splish-Splash!

Huh? What's that, Danny old pal? You agree with my plan? Lovely jubbly. But then again, that's most probably why what next transpires takes a run and jump when you back-up your acknowledgement by saying to me, 'Hey, Billy (Jackie Chan). For safety maybe we should consult the I-Ching first?'. As a nude drug-den is penetrated - a new partner is exfoliated - a surprise is in store for Billy and co - and at the end of the day, you can say exactly the same thing about the drug smuggler, Mister Ko.

Now while I was researching 'The Protector', something I discovered made me recollect an old argument I once had with a teacher of mine at school. I thought certain facts relating to 'Jack the Ripper' were true -- where as he didn't -- and this resulted in a rather strained face-off that concluded on the following day. And was it here -- at school again -- where I could substantiate my point of view by presenting him with a book I recently read, backing up my findings.

The Protector Starring Jackie Chan

The Protector Starring Jackie Chan
Trust me, folks. The teacher in question wasn't very pleased about being proven wrong by one of his very own pupils. And I suppose that is why I would like to start off my review by asking you to pay close attention to the following filmic-facts. (1) 'Golden Harvest' first released this production in Hong Kong on the 11th of July, 1985, where as 'Warner Bros' first released it in America on the 23rd of August, of the very same year. (2) The majority of this movie was shot on location throughout the Chinese city of Hong Kong, except for some select scenes shot in and around New York City. (3) One of the taglines used to promote this picture, was, 'Now, New York has a new weapon - A cop with his own way of fighting crime'. (4) Loosely translated, this project was entitled 'The Man Without Fear' in Sweden; 'Showdown in Hong Kong' in Hungary; and 'The Guardian' in Finland. (5) According to Jackie's book, 'I Am Jackie Chan: My Life in Action', whilst he was starring in this film he broke his hand because of a sloppily choreographed stunt scene. (6) To follow on from my previous fact, Jackie also stated that he wasn't very pleased with how the director of this adventure, James Glickenhaus, captured certain action scenes, and that was why he decided to re-shoot them again for the Honk Kong version, as well as make the now classic cop-based thriller, 'Police Story'. (7) As implied in my previous fact, the Hong Kong version of this film is a very different experience from the American version. This includes: The removal of 'random' nudity and 'gore elements'. The addition of a much broader range of fighting sequences. A whole new sub-plot featuring Sally Yeh from 'The Killer'. A one on one brawl between Bill Wallace and Lee Hoi-shan. Plus many-many more I best not mention here. (8) Now if you look very closely at that boat chase sequence at the very beginning of this picture, not only can you see the stunt driver sitting below deck, but you can also see the shadow of the helicopter-camera looming over the water. Ops! Cosmetic glitch! (9) Included in the Japanese version of this flick is Jackie's trademark end-credit outtake montage, which is complemented by a country and western sounding theme song.

The Protector Starring Jackie Chan and Danny Aiello

Now can you guess what made me think of my school-time argument I mentioned at the beginning of this review, folks? Yep. That is correct. It was Jackie's disenchantment with how the director of 'The Protector', James Glickenhaus, executed the action scenes and the overall story-line.

The Protector Starring Jackie ChanYou see, the way I see it, these are precisely the two aspects this film is sorely lacking -- Jackie's usual high-flying antics, plus how the story needed to be given more 'girth' to make the narrative feel less systematic, and more enveloping.

Of course I'm not referring to any of the acting on offer -- because that was just fine at it is -- kind of. And I'm not referring to the personality of this piece either -- as I just loved watching the on-screen chemistry between Jackie and Danny's characters. I'm only referring to the scope of the narrative and the action sequences in general. They needed an awful lot of work from my point of view, largely because this movie reminded me of your usual run of the mill eighties cop based drama, but with the added bonus of Jackie and an oriental sub-plot.

However, whilst saying that, I did find it rather out of character to hear Jackie swearing in this film. Plus the nudity on show also felt a bit... errr... unnecessary as well. As for the rest of it though -- well -- yeah -- it was fine I suppose. Just fine. Nothing spectacular. Like watching a bog standard TV movie that left you feeling hollow after you've watched it. And completely unlike the following ever humbly selected Youtube clip...

Overall I'd say 'The Protector' wasn't a bad movie, it just wasn't a good one either. Jackie and Danny worked well together as a team. The story was pretty much a hit and miss affair. And as for everything else... well?

Nuff said.