7.3/10
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397 user 225 critic

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

PG-13 | | Action, Adventure, Comedy | 2 July 1986 (USA)
Trailer
2:47 | Trailer
A rough-and-tumble trucker helps rescue his friend's fiancée from an ancient sorcerer in a supernatural battle beneath Chinatown.

Director:

John Carpenter
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Popularity
2,015 ( 32)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kurt Russell ... Jack Burton
Kim Cattrall ... Gracie Law
Dennis Dun ... Wang Chi
James Hong ... David Lo Pan
Victor Wong ... Egg Shen
Kate Burton ... Margo
Donald Li ... Eddie Lee
Carter Wong ... Thunder
Peter Kwong ... Rain
James Pax ... Lightning
Suzee Pai ... Miao Yin
Chao Li Chi ... Uncle Chu
Jeff Imada ... Needles
Rummel Mor ... Joe Lucky
Craig Ng ... One Ear
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Storyline

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. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Try to find big reason before you visit world of magic... See more »


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Carpenter envisioned the film as an inverse of traditional scenarios in action films with a Caucasian protagonist helped by a minority sidekick. Jack Burton, despite his bravado, is constantly portrayed as rather bumbling; in one fight sequence he even knocks himself unconscious before the fight begins. Wang Chi, on the other hand, is constantly portrayed as highly skilled and competent. See more »

Goofs

During her first scene at the airport, the color contacts on Gracie's "green" eyes are sometimes visibly out of place (look at her right eye when she turns to Jack after asking "what are they doing here?"). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Pinstripe lawyer: What I'd like to do today is get your version of what happened.
Egg Shen: Oh, you mean the truth.
Pinstripe lawyer: Of course. First, just state your name and your occupation for the record.
Egg Shen: Oh, Egg Shen. Bus driver.
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Alternate Versions

There is an alternate version with an added ending scene (found in the directors cut DVD), where after the story is finished, Kurt Russel, in his truck again, finds the 3 punks from the beginning of the movie sitting in their sports car by the docks. He then decidedly drives forward, smashing into their car and throwing it, with them inside, into the sea. This ending was removed from the theatrical version, being donned as "Too vengeful" after test screens. See more »


Soundtracks

Big Trouble in Little China
Written by John Carpenter
Performed by The Coupe de Villes
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User Reviews

This John Carpenter movie has it all!
23 October 1999 | by Ferris-26See all my reviews

If you`ve ever heard of the director John Carpenter, you`ll be familiar with his works (of art), like Hallowe`en, Escape From New York, Assault On Precient 13, The Thing, They Live, and this movie, a mid 80`s classic starring none other than Carpenter`s favourite front man, Kurt Russell. Set in Chinatown, Los Angeles, its a modern day fable of good versus evil, Chinese black magic, the hero storms the castle type affair. Russell plays Jack Burton, a wise cracking long distance truck triver and all American hero, passing through Chinatown on some business. After a card game with old friend Wang Chi (Dennis Dun), Wang (now penniless thanks to Burton`s good fortune) pursuades Jack to drive him to the airport, to pick up his childhood sweetheart, a girl Wang has not seen since they were children. Its here the story begins, as Mao Yin, Wang`s girlfriend, is captured by a mysterious gang. The two form a pact to rescue the girl from the clutches of the evil Lo Pan, former crimelord of Chinatown, a myth who has apparently lived to the age of almost 200, with a little help from some black magic.

Thats it, I`m saying no more, cos I don`t want to spoil it. You`ve probably seen the movie anyway.

Its hard to pick a favourite John Carpenter film, very hard, but this one has it all. Its a great action movie, a great comedy, an original story, great lines, and even a love story, a perfect blend of what big screen entertainment should be. Its strange though, that the ending was left so open, begging for a sequel that was never made.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Cantonese

Release Date:

2 July 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

John Carpenter's Big Trouble in Little China See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,723,211, 6 July 1986

Gross USA:

$11,100,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$11,100,577
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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