Police Story Lockdown on Blu-ray

Sunday, 24 July 2016 23:00 Written by 

Police Story - Lockdown - out now on Blu-ray and DVD“Police Story: Lockdown” is the sixth film in the action-packed franchise that started way back in 1985. The inimitable Jackie Chan stars, this time as Captain Zhong Wen, an elite cop who is kidnapped when he meets up with his estranged daughter at a nightclub. The club’s owner, Wu Jiang (Ye Liu – “City of Life and Death”) has a serious grudge to settle, and the lives of a dozen or so hostages lie in the balance. Can Wen save the day?

A cross between “Die Hard”, “The Dark Knight” and “Saw”, “Lockdown” features little of the Chan trademark humour, but a surfeit of impressive stunts and fights. He may be 62 but Jackie (“Rush Hour”, “The Karate Kid”) is still going strong. This is a movie oozing in brooding, claustrophobic atmosphere and a sense of constant danger. Director Ding Sheng got the best out of his star before in “Little Big Soldier”, and does so again here.

Through a sequence of brief but explosive scenes from some of Captain Wen’s previous cases, we and the policeman try to work out which incident involves the nightclub owner, either directly or indirectly. These clips help to add flavour to the interior action of the rest of the film, including a gripping chase scene, a “Lethal Weapon”-style suicide jumper and a tense drugstore robbery.

Chan is ultra-sombre and defiantly durable, acting his guts out even when the dialogue gets a bit bogged down later in the film. Wen wants to save every last hostage but Wu and his entourage are an extremely dangerous bunch, so it is a safe bet that the cop will get pretty battered and bruised as he puts his life before everyone else’s, especially his daughter’s (Tian Jing, also in the upcoming “Kong: Skull Island”).

Despite having starred in countless action and martial arts movies, Chan still manages to surprise and entertain. There is some wince-inducing slow motion combat, just to emphasise the punishment that Wen takes (and gives!), and the fight choreography is tight and brutal.

One of the real stand-out aspects of the film is the nightclub set. Apparently the result of a converted warehouse or factory, the horizontally and vertically open-plan building is crammed with pipes, metal bars, cages and chains that provide plenty of hiding spaces and neat areas to stage action sequences. Harsh neon signs and lights offset the dark metal livery.

I watched the movie with the 5.1 English dubbed soundtrack, which, despite the initially slightly off-putting array of accents and dialects, is very decent. Chan dubs himself, lending the film more authenticity than having someone else cover his part. Subtitles are available for those who wish to listen to the original film soundtrack.

“Police Story: Lockdown” is a very pleasant surprise. It is gripping thriller with a compelling plot and quality action scenes. Highly recommended.

Special features include:

  • Behind the scenes footage
  • Interviews with director Ding Sheng, Jack Chan, Ye Liu and Tian Jing
  • Trailer

“Police Story: Lockdown” (2013) is out now on DVD and Blu-ray, courtesy of Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment. The main feature has a running time of 106 minutes approx, carries a '15' certificate and retails for £15.99 on DVD and £19.99 on Blu-ray, or less from www.culttvstore.com.

 

 

 

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