Review: Big Trouble In Little China / by UKAnifest


Hi Civilians,

 My all time cult favourite, 'Big Trouble in Little China' is a fantasy-action film that is funny, collaborative and a mixture of genres. Kurt Russell plays a truck driver called Jack Burton, who gets caught in a bizarre conflict in San Francisco's Chinatown. An ancient Chinese prince and Chinatown crimelord has kidnapped a beautiful green-eyed woman, who is the fiancee to Jack's best friend. Jack must help his friend rescue the girl before the evil Lo Pan uses her to break the ancient curse that keeps him a fleshless and immortal spirit.


This film infuses martial arts films, old action / adventure films and Chinese mythology to give us a tale that is a mind f*** in imagination. "Big Trouble in Little China," was released in 1986 to mixed reviews, but failed to be that big blockbuster film for 20th century fox.  Despite an ironic lead performance by Kurt Russell as an sudo action hero who coins the phrase 'all talk and no action' and the big budget BTILC turned out to be a box office disappointment but further on down the years has become a huge cult hit and personally one of by most loved films to date.


Arrow video has now the pleasure to bring this cult film to UK bluray and trust me ... Arrow video does it justice!! BTILC had that grainy look (as it was filmed in the 1980's) and the restoration needed to be better than the American bluray release because that release kept all of the grain thus making you think why they had even bothered with it. With that in mind arrow has produced this bluray in a pristine image, less to no grain and going by the steel box they have spared no expense. The blacks are blacks and the pixels are dynamically sharp and shows major depth... Even the visual effects don't look dated and that's what you want from our beloved technology, a better transfer than the DVD. This bluray shows the world that arrow video have indeed spent time and money restoring this masterpiece producing the best digital representation of the film, better that our US counterparts it is amazing how we can now convert an film and have it look better and have less grain that the actual company that produced the film.



The English DTS-HD Master 5.1 has clarity, depth and sonically is engulfing (much like a 3D film at the IMAX). The surrounds move more information around the action sequences but matches the visual effects when it comes to sound placement. Included is a new 5.1 isolated score which is surprisingly good but I don't know who would bother.


The supplements appear to some what duplicate the american bluray with a Carpenter/Russell commentary, the isolated score, deleted scenes, extended ending, vintage featurette, various interviews with Carpenter and Russell, trailers, TV Spots and booklet featuring new writing on the film by John Kenneth Muir, author of The Films of John Carpenter, a re-print of an article on the effects of the film from American Cinematographer, illustrated with archive stills and posters



The film is amazing (I would say that!). The mixture of genres, the amazing script, the inclusion of martial arts and the nostalgic Sunday night feel of it all makes me wanna shout out to everyone ... GO AND BUY THIS! but don't just take my word for it, go an research it and you will find out that this is a cult hit and will remain in our hearts as a film that included so many genres and got away with it. After watching you want it to be longer, you want there to have s sequel and you want jack Burton to be the hero all of which will not happen!



   Film: ★★★★☆  Bluray: ★★★★☆

Big Trouble In Little China Steelbook [Blu-ray]
Starring Kurt Russell, Kim Cattrall, Dennis Dun, James Hong, Carter Wong