Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

Taglines: Adventure doesn’t come any bigger!

Truck driver Jack Burton arrives in Chinatown, San Francisco, and goes to the airport with his Chinese friend Wang Chi to welcome his green-eyed fiancée Miao Yin who is arriving from China. However she is kidnapped on the arrival by a Chinese street gang and Jack and Wang chase the group.

Soon they learn that the powerful evil sorcerer called David Lo Pan, who has been cursed more than two thousand years ago to exist without physical body, needs to marry a woman with green eyes to retrieve his physical body and Miao is the chosen one. Jack and Wang team-up with the lawyer Gracie Law, the bus driver and sorcerer apprentice Egg Shen and their friends and embark in a great adventure in the underground of Chinatown, where they face a world of magicians and magic, monsters and martial arts fighters.

Big Trouble in Little China is a 1986 American fantasy martial arts film directed by John Carpenter. It stars Kurt Russell, Kim Cattrall, Dennis Dun, and James Hong. The film tells the story of Jack Burton, who helps his friend Wang Chi rescue Wang’s green-eyed fiancee from bandits in San Francisco’s Chinatown. They go into the mysterious underworld beneath Chinatown, where they face an ancient sorcerer named David Lo Pan, who requires an Asian woman with green eyes to release him from a centuries-old curse.

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

About the Story

Truck driver Jack Burton (Kurt Russell) wins a bet with his restaurant owner friend Wang Chi (Dennis Dun), and accompanies him to the airport to pick up Wang’s Chinese fiancée Miao Yin (Suzee Pai) to make sure he honours the payment. A Chinese street gang, the Lords of Death, tries to kidnap another Chinese girl at the airport who is being met by her friend Gracie Law (Kim Cattrall), intending to sell her as a sex slave.

After Jack intervenes, they take Miao Yin instead. In Jack’s big-rig truck, he and Wang track the Lords of Death to the back alleys of Chinatown, where they find a funeral procession that quickly erupts into a street fight between the Chang Sing and Wing Kong, two ancient Chinese societies. When “The Three Storms” – Thunder, Rain, and Lightning, mighty warriors with weather-themed powers – appear, slaughtering the Chang Sing, Jack tries to escape but runs over Lo Pan (James Hong), a powerful and legendary sorcerer and the leader of the Wing Kong. Horrified, Jack exits his truck, but finds Lo Pan entirely unfazed and glowing with malicious power. Wang hurriedly guides Jack through the alleys; the two escape the carnage and mayhem, but Jack’s truck is stolen.

Wang takes Jack to his restaurant, where they meet up with Gracie, Wang’s friend Eddie Lee (Donald Li), and magician Egg Shen (Victor Wong), a local authority on Lo Pan. They try to explain to an incredulous Jack some of the ancient knowledge and sorcery the Chinese brought with them to America, eventually devising a plan to infiltrate a brothel, where they think Miao Yin is being held.

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

The infiltration effort is moderately successful, but the Storms interrupt the operation and make off with Miao Yin, taking her to their master Lo Pan. Jack and Wang track down the front business used by Lo Pan and impersonate electricians to gain access, but are quickly subdued by Rain. After being tied up and beaten by Thunder, the two meet Lo Pan – however, he now appears as a crippled old man. Wang tells Jack that Lo Pan needs a special green-eyed girl to break an ancient curse, and he intends to sacrifice Miao Yin.

Centuries ago, Lo Pan, a great warrior and even greater wizard, was defeated in battle by the first sovereign emperor Qin Shi Huang. The Emperor placed upon Lo Pan the curse of No Flesh. Although Lo Pan can be temporarily granted a decrepit body by supplication to the gods, in order for him to permanently break the curse and regain his human form, he must marry a woman with green eyes.

This simple act will appease Ching Dai, the God of the East. But to satisfy the Emperor, he must sacrifice her. When Jack and Wang’s friends attempt to save them, they are also captured, and Lo Pan notes that Gracie has green eyes, too. Lo Pan decides to sacrifice Gracie, while making Miao Yin his unwilling wife. After getting the drop on Thunder, Jack and Wang escape, and free many women kept in holding cells in the process; a horrible orangutan-like monster recaptures Gracie before she leaves.

Big Trouble in Little China Movie Poster (1986)

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

Directed by: John Carpenter
Starring: Kurt Russell, Kim Cattrall, Dennis Dun, James Hong, Victor Wong, Kate Burton, Donald Li, Carter Wong, Peter Kwong, Diana Tanaka
Screenplay by: Gary Goldman, David Z. Weinstein
Production Design by: John J. Lloyd
Cinematography by: Dean Cundey
Film Editing by: Steve Mirkovich, Mark Warner, Edward A. Warschilka
Costume Design by: April Ferry
Set Decoration by: George R. Nelson
Art Direction by: Les Gobruegge
Music by: John Carpenter, Alan Howarth
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: July 1, 1986