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Top 10 Jackie Chan Movies You Must Watch

jackie chan movies

Jackie Chan Movies

Jackie Chan, a global icon known for his acrobatic fighting style, comedic timing, and refusal to use stunt doubles, has carved a unique niche in the film industry. Not only has he delighted audiences with his martial arts skill and innovative stunts, but Chan has also made significant contributions to cinema with a diverse array of roles in both Asian martial arts and Hollywood blockbuster movies such as “Rush Hour” and “Kung Fu Panda” 16. With a career spanning over five decades, Jackie Chan’s movies remain a testament to his enduring talent and dedication to the craft.

The following compilation of Jackie Chan movies is not just a list; it’s a journey through the illustrious career of a martial artist who brought a new level of creativity and risk-taking to action cinema. From the streets of Hong Kong to the vast landscapes of Hollywood, Chan’s versatility and commitment to his own stunts have set the bar high for action stars. As we explore his top films, ranging from “Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow” to “Rush Hour”, viewers will be treated to a showcase of not just martial arts, but the evolution of one of cinema’s most beloved figures 135.

Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow (1978)

In “Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow” (1978), Jackie Chan stars as Chien Fu, an orphan and janitor at a kung fu school, who is often mistreated by the trainers and students. His life takes a dramatic turn when he meets Pai Chang Tien, portrayed by Siu Tien Yuen, the last master of the Snake Fist fighting style. The plot centers around the near-extinct Snake Fist style, threatened by the dominant Eagle Claw technique, and Chien Fu’s journey under Pai Chang Tien’s tutelage 7.

Key Features of the Film:

  • Genre and Direction: A blend of martial arts and comedy, directed by Yuen Woo-ping, showcasing a lighter side of martial arts cinema 7.
  • Main Cast: Alongside Jackie Chan and Siu Tien Yuen, Hwang Jang Lee plays a significant role, adding depth to the film’s character ensemble 7.
  • Innovative Fight Scenes: The movie is celebrated for its creative fight sequences, including an iconic battle between Chan and the old man, and a unique cat vs. snake fight, illustrating Chan’s ability to combine humor with action 7.

The film not only highlights Chan’s physical prowess but also his knack for combining martial arts with comedy, making it a groundbreaking project in his career. The introduction of a new fighting technique, combining Snake Fist with Cat’s Claw to counter the Eagle Claw style, showcases Chan’s character’s ingenuity and resilience. With an average rating of 8/10 based on 51 reviews, “Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow” is a must-watch for fans of martial arts and comedy alike. The film is available in various languages including Cantonese, Mandarin, and English, with English subtitles, ensuring a wide accessibility 78.

Drunken Master (1978)

In “Drunken Master” (1978), Jackie Chan brings to life the character of Wong Fei-Hung, a young and rebellious individual whose antics lead him to train under the guidance of Beggar So, a master of Drunken Boxing 1011. This film, directed by Yuen Woo-ping, stands out for its unique blend of action and comedy, setting a precedent for martial arts cinema 10.

Key Highlights of “Drunken Master”:

  • Direction and Production: Directed by Yuen Woo-ping and produced by See-Yuen Ng, the film is a hallmark of action-comedy in the kung fu genre 1011.
  • Main Cast: Jackie Chan shines as Wong Fei-Hung, with his performance underlined by the excellent chemistry with his co-star, making for a memorable duo 10.
  • Martial Arts Style: The movie is renowned for its portrayal of Drunken Boxing, a style characterized by deceptive movements and fluidity, mirroring the actions of an intoxicated person. This style is further embellished with the concept of the Eight Drunken Gods, adding depth to the film’s fight choreography 12.

The film’s fight scenes are a spectacle, blending staged, dance-like sequences with more intense, handheld camera shots to create a dynamic viewing experience. Despite the exaggerated sound effects and minimal visible damage, these sequences showcase Chan’s martial arts prowess without reliance on CGI or trick photography 12. Additionally, the training montages not only highlight Chan’s physical fitness but also the grueling nature of mastering Drunken Boxing 13.

“Drunken Master” has been celebrated for its innovative fighting styles and impressive showdowns, making it a classic in the kung fu film genre. While some aspects of the movie might feel dated, its influence on martial arts cinema and its showcase of Jackie Chan’s talents are undeniable 13. This film is a must-watch for fans of kung fu movies and Jackie Chan, offering a blend of dramatic and comedic moments that have captivated audiences worldwide 13.

Police Story (1985)

In “Police Story” (1985), directed by Jackie Chan himself, audiences are treated to a thrilling blend of action, comedy, and crime, making it a standout entry in Jackie Chan’s illustrious filmography 14. The film’s runtime of 1h 40m is packed with fast-paced sequences and comedic moments that have become synonymous with Chan’s style 16. Yiu-Tsou Cheung’s dual role as director of photography and editor, alongside Edward Tang’s writing, crafts a visually captivating and tightly woven narrative 14.

Key Aspects of “Police Story”:

  • Plot Overview: The movie follows the story of Chan Ka Kui, a dedicated Hong Kong policeman, who is embroiled in a high-stakes mission to protect a key state’s witness from being killed before she can testify in a trial. This mission takes a dramatic turn when Ka Kui is framed for the murder of a corrupt cop by the very drug lords he is trying to bring down 1416.
  • Stunt Work and Action Sequences: “Police Story” is renowned for its elaborate stunt work, including a breathtaking opening sequence in a mountainside village and a climactic fight scene in a shopping mall. These sequences not only showcase Chan’s physical prowess but also his creativity in choreographing action scenes that blend danger with humor 14.
  • Cast and Characters: The film features a stellar ensemble cast including Brigitte Lin, Maggie Cheung, and Bill Tung, among others, who bring depth to the story’s high-octane world. Chan’s character, Chan Ka Kui, stands out as a virtuous officer whose determination and martial arts skills are put to the test as he navigates through treacherous challenges to clear his name 14.

“Police Story” has left a lasting impact on the action genre, celebrated for its innovative physical comedy and thrillingly choreographed set pieces. The film’s synthesized score, characteristic of the 1980s, complements its dynamic pace, while the inclusion of outtakes during the credits provides a glimpse into the behind-the-scenes efforts and camaraderie among the cast and crew 14. A commercial success in Asia, “Police Story” not only solidified Jackie Chan’s status as a major star but also received critical acclaim for its contribution to the genre, with a Metascore of 78 and a User Score of 8.2, highlighting its broad appeal 151617. The film’s legacy continues with a new digital 4K restoration, ensuring that new audiences can experience this classic in the best possible quality 18.

Armour of God (1986)

“Armour of God” (1986) stands as a unique blend of adventure, comedy, and action, marking another milestone in Jackie Chan’s career as both a director and a leading actor 20. This film, with its original Chinese language and a runtime of 88 minutes, offers an international flair reminiscent of Indiana Jones, yet distinctively stamped with Chan’s signature style 2022.

Key Aspects of “Armour of God”:

  • Plot and Characters: The storyline follows an adventurer, Asian Hawk (played by Jackie Chan), and his friend (Alan Tam), as they embark on a high-stakes mission to rescue a woman (Rosamund Kwan) kidnapped by cultists. The cultists are in pursuit of a mystical set of armor believed to possess great powers. This quest leads them on a globe-trotting adventure, filled with perilous encounters and comedic mishaps 20.
  • Memorable Scenes and Stunts:
    • The movie is celebrated for its memorable action sequences, including a high-speed car chase, a tense confrontation with monks, and an innovative fight against four Amazon women, showcasing Chan’s creativity and physical agility 21.
    • One of the film’s most talked-about stunts involves Chan jumping from a wall to a tree branch, a risky maneuver that resulted in a near-fatal accident, highlighting the actor’s commitment to performing his own stunts 21.
  • Cultural and Cinematic Impact:
    • Despite its adventurous tone, the film does not shy away from humor, integrating it seamlessly into the action, a hallmark of Chan’s filmmaking style 21.
    • Interestingly, “Armour of God” is also known as “Operation Condor 2” in some regions, despite being released before the first “Operation Condor” movie, reflecting its complex international release history 21.

The film’s soundtrack, praised by many, further elevates the cinematic experience, blending action-packed scenes with engaging musical scores 21. With its R rating, “Armour of God” caters to a mature audience, ready to be thrilled by Chan’s daring stunts and entertained by the film’s comedic undertones. For those looking to watch, “Armour of God” is available for rent or purchase on Prime Video, making it accessible to a wide audience eager to delve into Jackie Chan’s adventurous world 20.

Project A (1983)

“Project A” (1983) stands out not only for its gripping narrative set in 19th century Hong Kong but also for its exceptional blend of action and comedy under the direction of Jackie Chan 23. In this film, Sergeant Dragon Ma (Jackie Chan) and his naval guard team face off against formidable pirates, leading to an unexpected alliance with the police under the command of Hong Tin-tsu, setting the stage for a series of thrilling escapades 23.

Key Highlights:

  • Stellar Cast and Crew: Jackie Chan shines both in front of and behind the camera, supported by talents like Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao. The film’s success is further bolstered by the expertise of producers Leonard Ho and Edward Tang, and the writing duo of Jackie Chan and Edward Tang, ensuring a seamless narrative flow and compelling character development 2324.
  • Memorable Scenes:
    • The sailors/police brawl, showcasing Chan’s innovative choreography 23.
    • A high-octane bicycle chase/fight that mixes humor with action 23.
    • The climactic final battle, a testament to Chan’s ability to blend martial arts with cinematic storytelling 23.
  • Critical Acclaim: Garnering an average rating of 9/10 from 73 reviews, “Project A” is celebrated for its breathtaking stunts and the unique blend of action and humor that has become synonymous with Jackie Chan’s filmmaking style. The film’s homage to silent film stars like Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd through its stunts and comedic elements has been particularly lauded, marking it as a quintessential Hong Kong action movie and one of Jackie Chan’s best works 232526.

The production of “Project A” was a testament to the dedication of its cast and crew, who, despite a limited budget, performed many dangerous stunts themselves. This commitment not only paid off in the film’s massive success in Hong Kong, where it grossed over HK$19 million, but also in its lasting impact on the action genre, praised for its stunts, fight choreography, and performances 2328. The film’s engagement with the Hong Kong police force for training adds a layer of authenticity to the action sequences, further elevating the viewing experience 27.

Supercop (1992)

“Supercop” (1992) emerges as a pinnacle of Jackie Chan’s illustrious career, seamlessly blending action, comedy, and crime under the adept direction of Stanley Tong. Jackie Chan reprises his role as Kevin Chan, a Hong Kong detective with a knack for going undercover and infiltrating the most perilous criminal organizations. Michelle Yeoh stars alongside Chan, portraying INTERPOL Inspector Jessica Yang, a role that showcases her formidable martial arts skills and positions her as an equal force to Chan’s character in their mission to dismantle a Chinese drug smuggling ring 29.

Key Highlights:

  • Action Sequences and Stunts: The film is a treasure trove of adrenaline-pumping action, featuring Chan’s fight with gymnastic beauty Sam Wong, a gritty initiation into the criminal gang, and a chaotic battle with police in a bustling marketplace. However, it’s the climactic confrontation that steals the show, involving daring car stunts, helicopter scenes, and a high-altitude fight atop a speeding train, which collectively underscore Chan’s reputation for breathtaking stunts 29.
  • Michelle Yeoh’s Stellar Performance: Yeoh’s portrayal of Jessica Yang is nothing short of impressive. Her martial arts prowess shines brightly, especially during combat sequences where she stands toe-to-toe with Chan. Yeoh’s character is a refreshing departure from typical female roles in action films of the era, providing a strong, skilled, and experienced police officer who significantly contributes to the narrative’s depth and excitement 2932.

The film’s release in 1992 marked a significant milestone, not just for Jackie Chan but for the genre as a whole, garnering a cult following thanks to its memorable stunts and action scenes. “Supercop” is celebrated for its ambitious and costly action sequences, including a shootout in the jungle, a chase sequence in Malaysia, and the aforementioned fight atop a speeding train. These elements, combined with Quentin Tarantino’s praise for the movie’s stunts as some of the greatest ever filmed, solidify “Supercop” as a must-watch for fans of action cinema 293233.

Rumble in the Bronx (1995)

“Rumble in the Bronx” (1995) marked a significant point in Jackie Chan’s career, introducing his unique blend of martial arts and humor to a broader American audience. Directed by Stanley Tong, the film features Jackie Chan as Keung, who visits New York City to attend his uncle’s wedding and ends up battling local gangs that threaten the community 34. The film’s cast includes Francise Yip, Marc Akerstream, Anita Mui, and Bill Tung, contributing to the dynamic storytelling and memorable characters 34.

Key Highlights:

  • Plot Dynamics: Keung’s journey from helping his uncle sell a grocery store to fighting off gangs encapsulates a blend of action, humor, and heart. The storyline showcases Chan’s character’s resilience and martial arts prowess as he navigates through various challenges in the Bronx 34.
  • Stunt Work and Action Sequences: Known for performing his own stunts, Jackie Chan’s dedication is evident in “Rumble in the Bronx”. A notable stunt includes Chan jumping off a building onto a fire escape landing, an action that resulted in a broken ankle for the star. Despite this, Chan continued filming, demonstrating his commitment to the craft 34. The film is filled with impressive action sequences that highlight Chan’s physical grace and athletic control, from hand-to-hand combat to chase scenes that keep the audience on the edge of their seats 34.
  • Reception and Impact: With a production cost of $7.5 million, “Rumble in the Bronx” earned over $32 million in the US, showcasing its box office success. Critics and audiences alike praised the film for its action-packed sequences and Chan’s engaging performance. Despite criticisms regarding its goofy dialogue and predictable plot, the film’s entertaining nature and Chan’s stunt work received positive feedback, with user reviews rating it between 7/10 and 10/10 353738.

“Rumble in the Bronx” stands as an entertaining Jackie Chan stunt-fest, where the action sequences triumph over the film’s low production value and straightforward plot. Critics have acknowledged it as an essential entry in Chan’s filmography, emphasizing the blend of impressive stunts and humor that has become synonymous with Jackie Chan’s movies 38.

Shanghai Noon (2000)

“Shanghai Noon” (2000) combines action, comedy, adventure, and thriller elements under the direction of Tom Dey, featuring a stellar cast including Jackie Chan as Chon Wang and Owen Wilson as Roy O’Bannon. The storyline unfolds with Chon Wang, a man of action with a limited vocabulary, teaming up with train robber Roy O’Bannon to rescue a Chinese princess held for ransom in Nevada. This film is a unique blend of Westerns, martial arts, and buddy movies, enriched by the performances of its leading actors 39.

Key Aspects:

  • Genre and Direction: Directed by Tom Dey, the movie is a mix of action, comedy, adventure, and thriller genres 39.
  • Main Cast: Owen Wilson, Jackie Chan, Brandon Merrill, and Lucy Liu play pivotal roles, bringing depth and humor to the storyline 39.
  • Runtime: The film has a runtime of 110 minutes, rated PG-13 for its action violence, some drug humor, language, and sensuality 39.

The film’s charm lies in the dynamic between Chan and Wilson, with Chan’s martial arts sequences and Wilson’s humorous verbal riffs underpinning the movie’s appeal. Critics, including Roger Ebert, have lauded the film for its effortless charm and the chemistry between its leads. Despite its lackluster plot, the movie’s dialogue, characters, and unique style of combat have been praised, making it an old-fashioned crowd-pleaser 3940. The movie also explores themes of trust and cultural differences, with fight scenes that showcase Jackie Chan’s distinctive combat style and prevalent humor throughout 41.

“Shanghai Noon” achieved moderate box office success, grossing over $100 million worldwide, and was nominated for several awards, including a Golden Globe for Best Original Song – Motion Picture. It stands out not only for its action-packed sequences but also for its exploration of themes such as loyalty and cultural diversity, further solidified by the performances of its leading and supporting cast 42.

Rush Hour (1998)

  • Title and Genre: “Rush Hour” (1998) is a dynamic mix of thriller, crime, comedy, and action genres, offering audiences a well-rounded cinematic experience 43.
  • Creative Team:
    • Director: Brett Ratner, known for his ability to blend humor with action-packed sequences 43.
    • Writers: Ross Lamanna and Jim Kouf crafted a screenplay that balances thrilling moments with comedic relief 43.
  • Cast Highlights:
    • Chris Tucker as James Carter brings a unique comedic flair to the buddy-cop dynamic 43.
    • Jackie Chan as Detective Lee showcases his legendary martial arts skills alongside his comedic timing 43.
    • The supporting cast, including Julia Hsu as Soo Yung and Tom Wilkinson as Thomas Griffin, adds depth to the storyline 43.

Plot Overview:

  • The movie pairs Chan, a Hong Kong detective, with Tucker, an L.A. cop, to solve a kidnapping case, setting the stage for a series of comedic and action-packed events 43.
  • The plot weaves through various comedic moments and cultural references, such as Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles, making it relatable and entertaining 43.
  • Chan’s character is known for performing his own stunts, adding authenticity to the action sequences 43.

User Reviews:

  • Reviewers have praised the film for its blend of action and comedy, noting the chemistry between Chan and Tucker as a highlight. Ratings from user reviews range from 7/10 to 10/10, emphasizing the film’s appeal as a classic action movie with engaging performances and memorable comedic moments 44.

Production Insights:

  • Producers: Arthur M. Sarkissian, Jonathan Glickman, and Roger Birnbaum were instrumental in bringing the high production value to the film 45.
  • Release and Distribution: The film hit theaters on September 18, 1998, and was later available for streaming on July 18, 2008, distributed by New Line Cinema 45.

Cultural and Cinematic Impact:

  • “Rush Hour” is credited with bringing Jackie Chan into mainstream American cinema, following his success with “Rumble in the Bronx” 47.
  • The film promotes diversity by showcasing Black and Asian actors in leading roles, contributing positively to the representation in Hollywood 48.
  • Despite some criticisms regarding the plot’s predictability, the film’s action sequences, comedic timing, and the lead actors’ chemistry have been lauded, making “Rush Hour” a memorable addition to the buddy cop genre 4748.

The Young Master (1980)

In “The Young Master” (1980), Jackie Chan not only stars as the main character but also makes his directorial debut, showcasing his multifaceted talent in the film industry. This film represents a significant milestone as it was the first project Chan undertook with Raymond Chow’s Golden Harvest Films, marking the beginning of a fruitful collaboration that would bring numerous Jackie Chan movies to audiences worldwide 49.

Plot and Characters:

  • Main Storyline: The narrative follows Lung (Jackie Chan), a somewhat lazy student who experiences a series of misadventures after losing a lion dancing competition to his brother, Tiger (Wei Pei). Lung’s journey takes a comedic turn when he is mistakenly identified as a criminal, leading to various comedic and action-packed encounters with the law 49.
  • Supporting Cast: The film benefits from a talented ensemble, including Lily Li, Yuen Baio, Kien Shih, and Kang-Yeh Cheng, who add depth and humor to the storyline. Their performances, combined with Chan’s direction and acting, create a dynamic and engaging cinematic experience 49.

Action Sequences and Comedy:

  • The movie is renowned for its intricate fight choreography and the creative use of props such as a lariat, a workbench, and a folding fan, which contribute to the film’s unique action sequences 49.
  • A standout moment is the climactic fight between Lung and Kam (Whang In Shik), which is noted for its length and intensity, showcasing Chan’s dedication to delivering high-quality martial arts cinema 49.
  • The film cleverly integrates comedic elements, including a scene where Jackie Chan dresses in drag, adding a layer of humor to the action-packed narrative. This blend of comedy and action is a hallmark of Chan’s filmmaking style, making “The Young Master” a memorable addition to his filmography despite its somewhat disjointed plot and continuity issues 49.

“The Young Master” is available for audiences to rent or purchase on platforms such as Prime Video, Apple TV, and Vudu, making it accessible for fans and newcomers to experience one of Jackie Chan’s early directorial efforts. With a runtime of 1h 33m, this film produced by Golden Harvest Company, not only highlights Chan’s physical agility and comedic timing but also his ability to craft engaging stories that blend drama, action, and comedy 51.


Throughout this exploration into the cinematic universe of Jackie Chan, we’ve journeyed through a selection of films that not only highlight his unparalleled ability to combine martial arts and comedy but also his enduring influence on both Asian and Hollywood cinema. Each movie, from the comedic timing in “Drunken Master” to the heart-pounding action of “Police Story” and the international adventures seen in “Rush Hour,” serves as a testament to Chan’s multifaceted talent and his commitment to entertainment. These films underscore the diversity of Chan’s roles and the depth of his contributions to the film industry, making his repertoire indispensable to fans of action and comedy alike.

Jackie Chan’s movies are more than just entertainment; they reflect a lifetime of dedication to the craft of filmmaking and to the art of martial arts, with each stunt and comedic act a piece of cinematic history that continues to inspire and influence countless others. As audiences, we are reminded of the significance of his work and its potential to engage and amuse generations to come. Whether you are a longtime fan or a newcomer to Jackie Chan’s vast filmography, there is always something new to discover and appreciate within his body of work, making every movie an essential watch.


What is Jackie Chan’s most highly acclaimed film?

Jackie Chan’s movies have been ranked by Tomatometer, and the top spot is shared by “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem” (2023) and “Supercop” (1992), both receiving high ratings of 95% and 93% respectively. They are followed by “Kung Fu Panda” (2008) at 87%, “Kung Fu Panda 3” (2016) at 86%, and “Drunken Master II” (1994) at 84%.

Which Jackie Chan movie is the most comedic?

According to rankings of Jackie Chan’s comedy films, “Rush Hour” takes the lead as the funniest, with other notable mentions including “Kung Fu Panda,” “The Spy Next Door,” “Shanghai Noon,” “Police Story,” “Around the World in 80 Days,” “Mr. Nice Guy,” and “The Medallion.”

Are there any underrated Jackie Chan films that are lesser-known?

Yes, there are several great Jackie Chan films that are not widely known, such as “To Kill With Intrigue” (1977), “Half a Loaf of Kung Fu” (1978), “Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow” (1978), “Magnificent Bodyguards” (1978), “Spiritual Kung Fu” (1978), “The Fearless Hyena” (1979), “My Lucky Stars” (1985), and “Miracles” (1989).

For someone new to Jackie Chan’s work, which movie should they watch first?

For those new to Jackie Chan’s filmography, a good starting point would be “Police Story” (1985), followed by other classics such as “Rumble in the Bronx” (1995), “Dragons Forever” (1988), “Drunken Master” (1978), “Little Big Soldier” (2010), “Rush Hour 2” (2001), “Project A 2” (1987), and “Mr. Nice Guy.” These films showcase a range of his work in action, comedy, crime, and romance.


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