September 13, 2005


Jackie Chan says he only needs five more years as king of the world before permanently retiring from action flicksIt's that time again. The time, every five years, when Jackie Chan announces that he's winding his action career down and packing it in as a martial arts star in favor of directing smaller films, training new directors, and doing more producing. This time he says he only needs five more years as king of the world before permanently retiring from action flicks.

We've all known that Jackie won't be forever. The fact that he's prolonged his action stardom beyond the life expectancy of the cartiladge in his knees doesn't mean that the guy isn't getting tired. This is the third time in my memory that he's made this announcement which always seems to follow a period in his career when he's had more flops than hits. But like many Cantopop stars, his retirement is always followed by a comeback.

This time, I hope he's serious. Jackie Chan is a big deal in movies, but recently he's become totally irrelevant. His latest outing as a producer (EVERLASTING REGRET) is already getting hammered, and his latest outing as an actor, THE MYTH, has attracted lots of bad buzz before it's even been released. Even his last "good" movie, NEW POLICE STORY, wasn't that good, it was just better than the other movies he'd been making. His last Hollywood vehicle, AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS, was a flop, and the only viable franchise he has left (RUSH HOUR) is a franchise that he's publicly claimed he doesn't really want to participate in but he'll do it for the paycheck...I mean, the fans.

Please. Jackie. Don't wait five years - take a vacation now. Put some ice on your damaged spinal column and that soft spot on your skull where the bones never fused properly. Put your feet up (as far up as your damaged hips can lift them, at least) and relax. Strike some shiny new prints of your best movies and let career retrospectives unspool at fancy theaters and film festivals all over the world. Endorse some more Japanese soft drinks. But please, retire now before people forget why they loved you in the first place.

September 13, 2005 at 08:45 AM in News | Permalink


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