'Robin B Hood'
(Jackie Chan, et al / 2-Disc DVD / NR / (2006) 2008 / Dragon Dynasty)
Overview: For never-do-well compulsive gambler Fong (Jackie Chan), there's only one thing more fearsome than debtors at his doorstep - having to coax a crying baby. But what if the baby becomes his golden goose to fend off his debtors? Can he overcome his phobia of diapers, milk bottles, and cloying lullabies?
DVD Verdict: Jackie Chan’s latest Hong Kong film effort, which he co-wrote along with first time writer Yuen Kam-Lun, is a mixed bag of classic Chan marital arts hi-jinx and physical comedy with some more heavy-handed issues of familial responsibilities that haven’t been seen since some of his drama-oriented Eighties fare. Chan’s martial arts and acrobatics are on minimal (yet still impressive) display throughout this babysitting epic, and instead favors two-man comedic bits with co-star Louis Koo, with assistance from Chinese comic legend Michael Hui as their boss.
Jackie’s latest effort comes to U.S. shores courtesy of Dragon Dynasty with a two-disc special edition. The film itself is presented in anamorphic widescreen with the original Cantonese soundtrack in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS options. As usual, Dragon Dynasty provides an English dub, and as usual it is best to avoid it if at all possible. The first disc’s sole extra is an audio commentary by director Benny Chan and is in Cantonese with English subtitles. Benny gives a standard director’s commentary as he hits on stories from the set and on Jackie’s career, but is not very entertaining, and his dry presentation gets a little droll. Your best bet is to just switch over to the track during the action sequences for his thoughts on getting the dangerous stunts on film.
The second disc offers a much more thorough look at the film’s creation than Benny’s audio commentary can portray as the classic outtakes shown at the end of the film are greatly expanded on in the making of featurette. Jackie’s solo interview is quite insightful as he goes on about wanting to try new things, new characters, and hints that a new project with Sammo Hung, Yuen Biao, and himself could be coming soon. Benny Chan as well as co-star Conroy Chan are put into the solo interview hot seat to put additional touches on their experiences making the movie, while a separate featurette gets most of the cast in on the interviewing fun.
Dragon Dynasty also ports over the original “Making Of” for Robin-B-Hood that was produced in Hong Kong. Besides the main actors being interviewed, you’ll also get a behind-the-scenes peak at the set ups for all the major stunts, the original Hong Kong trailer, and Jackie Chan singing the theme song, all wrapped up in a lovely 20-minute bundle. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
10 Deleted Scenes
Crashing the Hood: Featurette with Star and Action Director Jackie Chan
The Hand that Mocks the Cradle: Featurette with Director Benny Chan
Baby Boomer: Featurette with Co-Star Conroy Chan
Playtime For Adults: On The Set Of on Robin-B-Hood
Robin-B-Hood: An Original Making-Of Featurette
Feature Commentary by Director Benny Chan and Hong Kong Cinema Expert Bey Logan