5.7/10
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28 user 9 critic

Born to Defense (1986)

Zhong hua ying xiong (original title)
Jet, a young soldier at the end of the second World War must overcome some abusive Americans who are bullying him as well as the Chinese people.

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Writers:

, (english adaptation) (as J. Maeby) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Jet
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Keith Anthony ...
(voice)
Kaiming Chen
Wing Cho
...
(voice)
...
Jet (voice)
Peter Doyle ...
(voice)
Dongyu Fan
Zhanghe Gao
Jessica Gee ...
(voice)
Yin Geng
...
(voice)
Kerry Gutierrez ...
(voice)
Dean Harrington ...
US Marine
Mark King ...
GI Blue
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Storyline

Jet, a young soldier at the end of the second World War must overcome some abusive Americans who are bullying him as well as the Chinese people. Written by Tom MacNeill

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Once Upon A Time In China A New Hero Emerged...

Genres:

Action | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

16 February 1986 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Born to Defense  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (dubbed)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jet Li broke his nose after being hit in one of the boxing scenes. On every movie after this one you can see a small scar on his nose. See more »

Connections

Featured in Films of Fury: The Kung Fu Movie Movie (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A disappointing martial arts movie directed by, and starring, Jet Li.
22 September 2006 | by (Hampshire, England) – See all my reviews

Jet Li directs and stars in Born to Defend, a fight-packed martial arts movie set in China shortly after the end of the second world war. Li plays Jet, a soldier returning from the war who begins working with his pal (and ex-lieutenant), Zhang, helping with his rickshaw business. But when his wartime buddy is hospitalised in a fight with an American, and the rickshaw is trashed by a gang of US Navy bullies, Jet seeks revenge…

I love the majority Jet Li's movies, so it is a shame to report that this one is a bit of a letdown action-wise, and also extremely xenophobic; every American is portrayed as a drunken, brawling, womanising, murderous thug without any redeeming features whatsoever, whilst the Chinese are (mostly) seen as hard-working and honourable people. I realise that foreigners are often used as bad-guys in this kind of movie, but the 'racism' in Born to Defend is taken to a ridiculous level which is totally unacceptable (and I'm not even an American).

The fight action, although plentiful, doesn't live up to the standard that fans have come to expect from a Jet Li movie, and the fact that the hero gets his butt kicked for the majority of the running time makes the film even more disappointing. Jet's incredible martial arts skills take a back seat, with most of the early fights being boxing matches (with only a few kung fu kicks thrown in to occasionally spice things up).

The finale sees events improve somewhat with a terrific showdown between Jet and his enemies in a factory, but it is a case of too little, too late.

Jet handles the direction well and it is a shame that he hasn't tried helming a movie since; maybe his debut's lack of business at the box-office knocked his confidence—a shame, since he shows promise behind the camera, with an impressive explosive battle at the beginning and some lovely rain drenched scenes later on.

Die hard Jet Li fans will probably want to check this out regardless, but casual viewers beware—this is not one of his better efforts.

5.5/10 (which I will generously round up to 6 for the IMDb rating).


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