Movie review: Vanguard
One feels almost guilty to say anything negative about a movie that could have killed Jackie Chan.
The 66-year-old legend nearly drowned shooting a river rapids sequence, but the end result is simply not worth him risking his life for.
Vanguard was also a casualty of the Covid-19 pandemic, originally slated to open in cinemas during the Chinese New Year period and now finally ready for release tomorrow after being held back.
The film even opens with a dragon dance CNY parade, and when the cast literally faces the camera to wish audiences prosperity and good health at the end, the irony is unmissable.
A globe-trotting action adventure comedy directed by Stanley Tong, Vanguard refers to a top-notch security agency headed by Chan, whose team is sent on a mission to rescue a client from a Middle Eastern military group.
Throw in a Fast And Furious-worthy car chase, explosions, humorous fisticuffs, shootouts and gunfire so incessant your ears will be ringing after.
Unfortunately, it also features some laughably bad CGI, a cringey storyline, cheesy dialogue and pro-China propaganda, with characters devoid of dimension and villains who are caricatures.
But for those missing the typical Jackie Chan action vehicle, Vanguard gets the job done.