The Big Brawl (Battle Creek Brawl) Reviews
This movie was a big deal when it was released during the 80's, because it was one of the first Western movies starring Jackie Chan, which were fully English. The main problem that I found with the film is that the action scenes are pretty poor, which is surprising for a Chan movie, and the storyline wasn't that great. Jackie Chan plays Jerry Kwan whose father is being bullied by the local gangsters because he won't pay them protection money for his restaurant. When Jerry bumps into the gangsters while they are leaving his father's place, he uses his Kung Fu skills to fight them off and he warns them not to come back again. The mobsters then tell the head boss, Dominici (Jose Ferrer), about his Kung Fu skills and he decides to use him for the Battle Creek Brawl competition, we're various fighters come together to battle for a cash price. As Jerry is reluctant to fight in the competition, Dominici kidnaps his brothers fiance, who has just arrived from Hong Kong. After some training with his uncle Herbert (Mako), he enters the competition to fight for her release. There are some other elements to the storyline but I don't want to spoil it for those people who haven't watched it before. Like many Chan movies, there is a lot of weak comedy throughout the movie, especially during the fighting scenes, so I was quite put off from the beginning. I also was expecting a big showdown at the end but it turned out to be a bunch of heavyweight men, wrestling with each other. Chan looked tiny compared to his opponents and the silly Kung Fu moves that he used against them, was pretty poor. The acting wasn't bad and I liked the chemistry between Chan and Mako but the film looked extremely dated and the comedy was just not that funny. Average!
This movie was written and directed by Robert Clouse, who brought you Enter The Dragon, Black Belt Jones, Game Of Death, China O'Brien I & II and Ironheart. He sadly died of kidney failure in 1997, at the age of 68 but he firmly put his stamp in cinema with the movies that he made with Bruce Lee. I don't think that this movie was in the same ball park as Enter The Dragon or Game Of Death but he can honestly say that he had a hand in bringing Chan to a Western market before he died.
Worldwide Gross: $8.5million
I recommend this movie to people who are into their action/martial arts/crime/comedies starring Jackie Chan, Jose Ferrer, Kristine DeBell, David Sheiner, Mako and Larry Drake. 3/10
* Shaolin Wooden Men (1976)
* The Fearless Hyena (1979)
* The Young Master (1980)
* Dragon Lord (1982)
* Project A (1983)
* Project A Part II (1987)
(1980) The Big Brawl
Jackie Chan's first attempt to jump start his film career in the US as well as his first English speaking film which has a great beginning which cannot be said the same for the rest of the way especially the end. Somewhere on the beginning showcases some of Jackie's acrobats involving tennis balls which was an absolute delight but the final fight could've been better had Jackie had more creative control but slightly better than average overall!
3 out of 4