The Medallion

on August 22, 2003 by Tim Cogshell
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"The Medallion" is yet another in a series of mediocre Jackie Chan-driven buddy comedies. As is the case in most of these films, the well-staged Hong Kong-style action sequences--provided by the ever-resilient Mr. Chan--are engaging enough, and the comic relief is hit-and-miss. Joined by comic actor Lee Evans ("There's Something About Mary"), Chan does not find the chemistry he had with Chris Tucker of the "Rush Hour" series or Owen Wilson, with whom he was paired in the two "Shanghai" movies. Here, there is also a romantic element, as Chan makes goo-goo eyes with British Scotland Yard Agent Nicole James (Claire Forlani), with whom he also has no chemistry.

The story, which was re-written several times by no fewer than four writers, is vexing to nearly anyone above the age of 12. There is a young boy--a Chosen One--who has a medallion that can give immortality and superhuman strength to the bearer, or something like that. Julian Sands plays an evil Irishman who wants it; Chan plays a Chinese police officer (surprise) that must protect the boy and the medallion. Note: The 300 pre-12 year olds at the screening of the film loved it. Which, apparently, matters more than character dynamics or original plot. Starring Jackie Chan, Lee Evans, Claire Forlani, Julian Sands and John Rhys-Davies. Directed by Gordon Chan. Written by Bey Logan, Gordan Chan, Alfred Cheung, Bennett Joshua Davin and Paul Wheeler. Produced by Alfred Cheung. A TriStar release. Action/Comedy. Rated PG-13 for action and violence and some sexual humor. Running time: 97 min

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