The Medallion

August 22nd, 2003


The Medallion

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Still of Julian Sands in The MedallionStill of Claire Forlani in The MedallionStill of Lee Evans in The MedallionStill of Jackie Chan and Lee Evans in The MedallionStill of Jackie Chan in The MedallionStill of Jackie Chan in The Medallion

A Hong Kong detective suffers a fatal accident involving a mysterious medallion and is transformed into an immortal warrior with superhuman powers.

Release Year: 2003

Rating: 4.8/10 (13,744 voted)

Critic's Score: 38/100

Director: Gordon Chan

Stars: Jackie Chan, Lee Evans, Claire Forlani

Eddie, an indomitable Hong Kong cop, is transformed into an immortal warrior with superhuman powers after a fatal accident involving a mysterious medallion. Eddie enlists the help of British Interpol agent Nicole to determine the secret of the medallion and face down the evil Snakehead who wants to use its magical powers for his own nefarious plans.

Writers: Alfred Cheung, Bennett Davlin

Jackie Chan - Eddie Yang
Lee Evans - Arthur Watson
Claire Forlani - Nicole James
Julian Sands - Snakehead
John Rhys-Davies - Cmdr. Hammerstock-Smythe
Anthony Wong Chau-Sang - Lester (as Anthony Wong)
Christy Chung - Charlotte Watson
Johann Myers - Giscard
Alex Bao - Jai (as Alexander Bao)
Siu-Ming Lau - Antiquerium Dealer (as Lau Siu Ming)
Diana C. Weng - Undercover Woman (as Diana Weng)
Chow Pok Fu - High Priest
Tat-kwong Chan - Monk
Wai Cheung Mak - Monk (as Mak Wai Cheung)
Anthony Carpio - Guard Monk


Official Website: Official site [Hong Kong] | Sony Pictures [United States] |

Release Date: 22 August 2003

Filming Locations: Dublin Castle, Dublin, County Dublin, Ireland

Box Office Details

Budget: $41,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: HKD 149,975 (Hong Kong) (17 August 2003) (38 Screens)

Gross: $22,108,977 (USA) (19 October 2003)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

WILHELM SCREAM: First heard from Eddie when Snakehead grabs his chest in their fight in the forest. Heard a second time when Eddie sees Snakehead's face on the medallion.

Factual errors: When Jackie takes the "NOD" (night optical device) out of the water there is no lens cap on it, but when he puts it onto the click on his head there is a cap.

[Looking at his own corpse]
Eddie Yang: Is my nose really that big?

User Review

Entertaining, Fast-Paced Genre Melder

Rating: 8/10

Every 1000 years a child is born who can wield the power of two halves of a supernatural medallion, which can bestow superhuman strength and immortality, as well as take life away. Snakehead (Julian Sands), your typical crook with world domination ambitions, has discovered the identity of a modern-day chosen child, and pursues him. Meanwhile, Hong Kong police detective Eddie Yang (Jackie Chan) and Interpol agents Arthur Watson (Lee Evans) and Nicole James (Claire Forlani) have been pursuing Snakehead because of his criminal activities, and stumble into the grander scheme.

While The Medallion is certainly not a film without flaws, it is satisfying on the whole if you approach it as a comic book/cartoon-styled Jackie Chan actioner. The film combines even more genres than that, actually, and there are times when it seems almost to be a spoof of James Bond-styled thrillers. There are also more straightforward comedy elements--especially when Evans is on screen, the film almost becomes a slapstick farce--there are Matrix-styled fantasy/action aspects, and there is a romance subplot. On top of all of that, The Medallion moves very quickly. Director Gordon Chan packs a lot of information into the film and barely pauses for a breath--if you blink, you're likely to miss some bit of crucial action, a plot point, or a joke.

In short, it's a complex stew of different genres, with a mixture of adult themes and childlike lightheartedness, wrapped in a dense mythology of fantasy and served at a non-stop, breakneck pace. Undoubtedly, those qualities will turn off a great deal of viewers, whether because they hate MTV/attention-deficit-disorder-styled editing, genre hopping or a lack of real-world believability. I don't mind any of those qualities, and in fact I tend to prefer films that forgo realism.

I only had two small complaints about The Medallion. One, it took me a few scenes to get up to speed with the film, both plot-wise and in terms of style. Once I got into the groove, though, I didn't want the film to stop--enough that my second complaint is that the film was too short (and in general, I strongly dislike the fact that most films seem to be forced by studios to end within 90 minutes). I wanted to see more of these characters, especially Evans, who stole most of the scenes he appeared in. Jackie Chan fans seeking a return to films that are solely kung fu-oriented will likely be disappointed, but if you have broader tastes, The Medallion might hit the spot. An 8 out of 10 from me.


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