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Columbia TriStar Home Video presents
Jackie Chan Adventures: The Shadow of Shendu (2000)

"The Dark Hand will never have all 12!"
- Jackie Chan (James Sei)

Review By: Rich Rosell   
Published: March 13, 2002

Stars: James Sie, Sab Shimono, Greg Ellis, Julian Sands, Stacie Chan
Director: Rick Del Carmen, Gloria Jenkins, Bryan Andrews

Manufacturer: DVCC
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (mild cartoon-ish violence)
Run Time: 57m:01s
Release Date: March 05, 2002
UPC: 043396083622
Genre: animation


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
D- D-A-B D-

DVD Review

Let it be said for the record that I love cartoons. If I'm in the presence of greatness then I refer to them as "animation," but that brings to mind epics like Princess Mononoke, Akira or Fantasia. Cartoons are the country cousins to art, and their purpose is less regal and more primal. Spongebob Squarepants, The Simpsons, Bugs Bunny, Scooby-Doo and Yogi Bear are cartoons, and they manage to entertain. Jackie Chan Adventures: The Shadow Of Shendu doesn't really fit in either category. It is just bad.This strung-together collection of three episodes from the cartoon series does not have the entertainment legs to be something generations will fondly recall 50 years from now, like it is possible to do with those great Warner Brothers shorts. This is marketing disguised as a series, and all it really ends being is hollow filler. Trying to base a cartoon on the incredible martial arts stuntwork abilities of Chan is pointless, since animated characters can literally do anything anyhow.This fluff is made for kids, so I'll attempt to get my proper focus back, as difficult as that may be. I don't really know how these episodes fit in the whole mythos of the series (since I had never seen one prior to this disc), but apparently Jackie Chan (James Sei), his spunky 11-year-old niece Jade (Stacie Chan) and his curmudgeonly uncle are in constant battle against the evil Dark Hand. There is a collection of ancient oriental talismans that the villainous Valmont (Julian Sands) is trying to collect, and it's up to the Chans and the mysterious Section 13 to stop him (I think). Did I mention the "over-sized lawn ornament" Shendu, which is some kind of talking rock that issues orders to Valmont? The animation is clunky, and was obviously done on the cheap, as is so typical of slot-fillers like this. There is an attempt to give backgrounds a retro look, but it just comes across looking unfinished. The writing is two steps below Jonny Quest and one step above Captain Planet on the cartoon food-chain. If my daughter was hooked on this, I would hide the remote and make her get a hobby.

Rating for Style: D-
Rating for Substance: D-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Every cloud supposedly has a silver lining, and for this disc it is the 1.33:1 fullframe image transfer, which is clean and has a bright palette of colors. It's a shame the content is so cruddy, because the disc looks quite good; this is certainly much better than my cable signal. No noticeable blemishes or source defects.

Image Transfer Grade: A-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, Spanish, French, Chinese, Portugueseyes


Audio Transfer Review: The 2.0 surround track is basically an enhanced stereo mix, with little or no rear channel activity. Voices are mixed well, and come across clearly as they utter frighteningly bad dialogue. Presentable, but not overdone.Audio tracks are also available in Spanish, French, Chinese and Portuguese.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 28 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese with remote access
2 Other Trailer(s) featuring 3 Ninjas: High Noon At Mega Mountain, Karate Kid Part II
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: The back cover promises "Jackie Chan interviews", but these are nothing more than quickie bumpers (no doubt used in the series at the episode's conclusion), and must be a contractual obligation on Chan's part. A pair of kid-friendly chop-socky themed trailers (3 Ninjas: High Noon At Mega Mountain, Karate Kid Part II), a hearty 28 chapters and subs in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese fill out the rest of the disc.

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

Move it along, people. Nothing to see here.This is the kind of stuff that gives cartoons a bad name. A really bad name.

 


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