Bleeding Steel-Movie Review

Jackie Chan is 63, so you can’t really blame him if he doesn’t look as sprightly as he used to 20 years ago. But the fact that he’s still headlining action films from China and Hong Kong is still impressive. His latest offering, Bleeding Steel is a CGI extravaganza about droids, bio-engineered superhumans and a story that would make Tamil filmmaker Shankar jump up with excitement. That the film’s ideas are so far-fetched and the CGI and make-up is certifiably b-grade robs Bleeding Steel of its punch. Jackie Chan puts in an earnest performance. But at his age, the viewer has to constantly hunt for other distractions on screen, because well, Jackie Chan is old and not as enchanting on-screen as he used to be.

The story of Bleeding Steel is a bit convoluted but its certifiably big-ticket. It starts off as special agent Lin Dong (Jackie Chan) struggles to give time to his young daughter on the death-bed as his job requires him to provide protection to a witness. So he leaves his dying daughter to go save a scientist. The scientist Dr James (Kim Gyngell) as it turns out has been tinkering with biogenetics, creating super-human soldiers, droid armies etc. James’ experiment gone-wrong Andrew (Callan Mulvey) is referred to as ‘de...devil’ by the flustered scientist. He’s the big villain of the story and he looks like the dude from Hellraiser minus the spikes jutting out of the skull. He’s a superhuman who can survive bullets, lasers, explosions and even a stab to the brain. The bad guy wants James’ bio-mechanical heart, because it will give him even better powers. Nonetheless, Chan foils the plans and then the narrative suddenly jumps 13 years into the future and the setting changes from China to Sydney. Bleeding Steel certainly looks international and continues the template of Chan’s big films set in big cities. From there on, new characters are introduced, there’s Nancy (Ouyang Nana) and Li Sen (Show Lo) who’re the young spunky couple of the film. Nancy’s got the infamous mechanical heart beating in her chest and she’s also got the blood of Dr James which makes her super-human but she doesn’t know that. So Bleeding Heart turns into one giant circus of Abbas-Mustan style twists and turns. Only problem being, it wants to be a Luc Besson film from China but it plays out in less-flattering fashion.

Jackie Chan’s made a career selling outrageous action-adventures with nothing but his penchant for risky stunts. He used to jump from buildings, slide on glass skyscrapers, squeeze throw 2x2 feet spaces in the blink of an eye. At 63, he can’t do those things in reality so he pulls off the same kind of stunts in Bleeding Steel with the help of CGI and it just does not look good. If this was any other action star in the world, you could’ve taken it with a tablespoon of salt, but with Chan you just can’t accept the fact that his stunt looks fake. In one of the fight sequences, Chan’s character fends off martial-arts minions with a magician’s hat spewing playing cards and bunnies. Its slapstick, something Chan’s pulled off with elan for 30 years, but it just doesn’t fit within the sci-fi action themes of Bleeding Steel. And then, director Leo Zhang throws in ridiculous moments like Chan losing an arm and then growing it back Deadpool. There are just too many facepalm moments in this messy blockbuster.

If you’re the sort who enjoys Michael Bay’s Transformers, then perhaps you’ll be able to sit through Bleeding Steel, perhaps even experience a moment of euphoria or two. But if you’ve grown up watching Jackie Chan through the ’80s, ’90s and 2000s, you’d have a hard time watching him pull the punches. Bleeding Steel tries very hard to stage a spectacle

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  1. I cant wait to watch dis movie. Jacky is my man...