Blu-ray review: Shanghai Noon/Shanghai Knights

shanghai noon blu ray shanghai knights blu ray Blu ray review: Shanghai Noon/Shanghai Knights

Shanghai Noon is an entertaining comedy buddy movie featuring Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson.  The formula is the same as Rush Hour with a Chinese lawman coming to America to solve a case.  Of course he accidentally partners up with a wise cracking American and hilarity ensues due to culture contrast.  The difference from both movies is the setting.  Rush Hour was present day while Shanghai Noon is Western, circa 1880’s.  A Chinese princess is kidnapped and it’s up to Jackie Chan to save her.  He meets up with a jerkish outlaw played by Owen Wilson.  They work together to save the princess while having different agendas.  So the movie won’t look insensitive, the two bad guys are caucasian and asian.  The more I write this review, the more it sounds like Rush Hour to a T.  The fight scenes are fun and I like Wilson’s character because he’s a know it all and the joke is always on him.  He just doesn’t know it.

The sequel came out several years later titled Shanghai Knights.  This time around, the villains are still the same combo of a white and Chinese.  The stakes are bigger as both baddies want to take over Britain and China.  I liked this movie better than the original because the fight scenes was more exciting.  Thanks to Donnie Yen going against Jackie Chan.  There’s an epic scene at the end of the movie between the two.  The chemistry between Wilson and Chan is also funnier.  They’re familiar with each other so there’s no more cliche’d subplots and hurt feelings.  It’s just trash talking and wise cracks.

Both movies are predictable but what did you expect from a Jackie Chan movie?  It delivers the action scenes and laughs and that’s all I can ask for.


The video is crisp and it can be easily noticed this is HD.  The colors are natural and there’s no bleeding.  There’s no ghosting or mosquito noises.  Excellent transfer.


Yikes!  Audio is another story.  It’s not in lossless HD and only in Dolby Digital 5.1.  I’m guessing Disney decided to go this route since it’s a budget title and both movies are on the same disc.  To fit everything, the sound quality took the hit.  It sounds tinny and dull.  The center speaker is easy to comprehend but it’s obvious it’s compressed.


There’s several commentaries from director Tom Dey and behind the scenes featurettes and deleted.  My favorite is the fight scene breakdowns as it gives you a look at Chan’s mindset and how he comes up with the flow of the action.  I’m glad Disney added these, even for a budget title.


The Shanghai franchise has a cliche’d story but a fun watch with a great video transfer.  The audio could’ve been way better but Disney sacrificed it due to the price point.  Surprisingly it has plenty of extras.

Overall grade: B

pixel Blu ray review: Shanghai Noon/Shanghai Knights

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