The Best Street Fighter Movie Starred...Jackie Chan?

Illustration for article titled The Best Street Fighter Movie Starred...Jackie Chan?
Total RecallTotal RecallTotal Recall is a look back at the history of video games through their characters, franchises, developers and trends.

You've seen the bad of the Street Fighter craze of the early 90s. Now see the good. No, not good. Amazing.


In this clip, from 1993 movie City Hunter, we see martial arts superstar Jackie Chan take a bit of a beating. After which he starts seeing things. Namely, characters from Street Fighter II. Then he becomes one. Then more. It's martial arts cosplay. And it's one of the best things that ever punched its way out of the 1990s.

City Hunter isn't a Street Fighter movie. It's actually an adaptation of a classic Japanese manga by the same name, which was published between 1985 and 1992. The City Hunter comics were over-the-top affairs, as a private detective mixed deadly combat on the streets of Tokyo with light-hearted gags and character quirks.

The 1993 live-action adaptation, shot in Hong Kong and starring Chan, was even more light-hearted. As you'll see in the four-minute excerpt to the left, which culminates in Jackie Chan wearing a Chun-Li outfit and taking on Ken Masters in a fight that uses wires to actually simulate the in-game moves of the character.

God, what isn't there to love about this. It's not just that these guys (Ken, played by Tekken's Gary Daniels, is just as good) look the part, they act it. Note Ken's little "horns" victory signal, and how much Chan seems to revel in the role of a kick-ass Chinese girl with massive thighs.

Not that he did - he apparently hated the movie, and his performance in it - but he looks like he did. What a pro.


FUN FACT: While the movie obviously directly references Street Fighter II, down to the sound effects and character design, one concession had to be made. In the credits, E. Honda had to be changed to E. Honde, because Chan, who had a marketing deal with Mitsubishi, couldn't be seen to be endorsing the name of a competitor.

Total Recall is a look back at the history of video games through their characters, franchises, developers and trends.


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Luke Plunkett

Just for the record, the anime movie is actually the best. But I can't bring myself to write one of these about it because it's also not terribly interesting.

Except for the fact there's a Silverchair song on the soundtrack. Always thought that was a little odd.