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‘The Foreigner’ (review)

Produced by Jackie Chan, Wayne Marc Godfrey,
D. Scott Lumpkin, Jamie Marshall, Arthur M. Sarkissian
Screenplay by David Marconi
Based on The Chinaman by Stephen Leather
Directed by Martin Campbell
Starring Jackie Chan, Pierce Brosnan,
Michael McElhatton, Charlie Murphy, Liu Tao,
Orla Brady, Dermot Crowley, Rufus Jones


The Foreigner is a fantastically taut action-drama starring, Jackie Chan as a quiet restaurant owner in Britain who’s only daughter is killed in a terrorist bombing by a new faction of the IRA.

Pierce Brosnan plays a former IRA soldier turned Irish Government official and liaison to the British Government whom, Chan’s character, Quan goes to for answers. Quan, with quiet determination that turns volatile,
wants to know who did it and he hounds the former IRA threatening his life and political position to get to the bottom of who killed his only surviving daughter.

This film was NOT what I thought it was going to be.

Jackie Chan was phenomenal as the restaurant owner with a dark past. He not only flexes acting muscles as well as his action ones as the distraught father hell bent on finding justice for his slain child. I sometimes forget that he is a really good actor because usually he is usually joking around and using his comedic brand of martial arts in his films and doesn’t get a chance usually to show off his acting chops.

The film is a slow burn to the climactic end. Directed by James Bond and action film veteran, Martin Campbell (Goldeneye, Casino Royale) the story is much more dramatic then we are used to with Chan.

Going for a more Taken (2008) approach over Rush Hour (1998), it takes into account 63 year old Chan’s age, so the fighting while intense, definitely takes a toll on his character and he isn’t as spry as he used to be so he takes a more tactical approach to his fighting and stunts.

I have to say that I am a huge fan of this film. It was an engaging political thriller and personal tragedy drama mixed with an amazing action film. It is not your usual Jackie Chan kung-fu/chop sockey fun and fighting film we are used to. Based on the 1992 novel The Chinaman by Stephen Leather, my appreciation for the film has already put the book on my “to read” list. The supporting cast is excellent and the reunion of Brosnan and director Campbell is an added bonus. As a longtime fan of Chan, I definitely plan on seeing it again.





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