Despite trying to keep his swashbuckling to a minimum, a threat to California's pending statehood causes the adventure-loving Alejandro de la Vega (Banderas) -- and his wife, Elena (Zeta-Jones) -- to take action.
A 19th century Western. Chon Wang is a clumsy Imperial Guard to the Emperor of China. When Princess Pei Pei is kidnapped from the Forbidden City, Wang feels personally responsible and insists on joining the guards sent to rescue the Princess, who has been whisked away to the United States. In Nevada and hot on the trail of the kidnappers, Wang is separated from the group and soon finds himself an unlikely partner with Roy O'Bannon, a small time robber with delusions of grandeur. Together, the two forge onto one misadventure after another. Written by
The Chinese characters shown in the background during the opening credits are excerpts from a translation of "The Frog Prince". See more »
The movie is set in 1881. The train depicted in the early scenes has a large, prominent name plate on the front of the locomotive, with its engine number, "68", and the date of manufacture, 1883. See more »
Often laugh out-loud funny, but it could have been better
This unpretentious comedy has wooden acting, a few very funny spots and great stunt fighting by Jackie Chan. This was my first Jackie Chan flick, and I enjoyed it enough to try another - probably the sequel, Shanghai Knights. Inclusion of puns is often a reliable indication that a comedy will be lame but the puns are good (Shanghai Noon? Chon Wang?) and the comedy is better. The movie fails to grab the audience for the first 15 or 20 minutes but then finds its stride and becomes more engaging. Many other reviewers comment on the chemistry between Chan and Owen Wilson (which gets better as the film progresses), but there is a total lack of chemistry between Liu and Chan. Indeed, the scenes with the most passion are the ones between Liu and bad guy Lo Fong (played by Roger Yuan). And Brandon Merrill sizzles, although no one in the film seems to notice. After about twenty minutes my wife said "everyone is just saying their lines." I did lower my rating for bad acting, but then gave extra credit for Chan's acrobatic, interactive fight choreography. The fight scenes are both funny and entertaining. I gave it a 6 out of 10.
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