Kiss of the Dragon
Entertainment: +2 1/2
Acceptability: -3

Liu Jian (Jet Li) is a Chinese super-agent on a mission to capture an international gangster in France. Liu is highly skilled in the martial arts, weaponry, and--his trademark--acupuncture needles. To accomplish his mission, Liu must cooperate with France's own version of James Bond, Jean-Pierre Richard (Tcheky Karyo). When a sting operation goes awry, Liu realizes Richard is corrupt. He now has to fight to survive as France's top law enforcers close in. His only hope may be midwest-farm-girl-turned-Paris-prostitute Jessica (Bridget Fonda). Jessica is in Richard's inner circle, but only because he keeps her daughter locked away in a Paris orphanage. If Liu can rescue Jessica's daughter, she may help him bring down Richard. Plot development rarely gets in the way of martial arts action which is comical at times, grotesque on occasion, but always spectacular in this action-adventure thriller. Young adults may appreciate the amazing action stunts and driving soundtrack, but older adults will long for more intrigue.

Liu Jian is portrayed as a highly professional agent with a strict moral code. He rebuffs advances from a prostitute and bristles at the suggestion he is gay when revealing he has never been with a prostitute. He shows tremendous kindness to his elderly Chinese caretaker and holds a brief, but non-Christian, religious service when he is killed. He is devoted to doing right, even though everyone around him is steeped in corruption. The major downfall of this film is extreme violence. Extended martial arts action sequences feature innumerable punches, kicks, and head butts. Viewers explicitly see a man blown in half. A prostitute brutally stabs her client repeatedly. The movie's title refers to a horrific method of killing with an acupuncture needle. Prostitutes are shown in revealing clothing, engage in graphic sex motions and other sensual activity. One prostitute snorts powder off a table and another is forcibly injected with heroin. Frequent foul language includes numerous obscenities. Violence, foul language and graphic sexual content put it off limits for discerning viewers.

Preview Reviewer: John Barber
Distributor: 20th Century Fox, 10201 West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035

Crude Language: Many (15) times Mild 1, moderate 14
Obscene Language: Many (29) times F-word 19, s-word 6, other 4
Profanity: Several (6) times Regular 3 (G, J, JC); Exclamatory 3 (OG, OMG 2)
Violence: Many times Severe, often graphic (numerous martial arts fights w/ punches/ kicks/ chops/ head-butts, graphically bloody face, woman stabs man repeatedly, shootings, men burned with hot iron, man graphically explodes, female prostitutes struggle, blood gushes out of mans head)
Sexual Intercourse: Few times (Prostitute with clients graphic motion, no nudity)
Nudity: Few times Female rear (thong underwear); Near Nudity Several times (low-cut tops emphasize cleavage, high cut skirts; woman in underwear)
Homosexual Conduct: : Few times (female prostitutes interact sensually, slang term for homosexual used)
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: Many times (prostitute sensuously interacts with man/ dances suggestively, man looks at porn magazine, prostitute offers free sex, sex offered for food, man suggests child too young to work)
Drug Abuse: Few times (woman snorts powder, prostitute forcibly injected with heroin, man drinking at bar)
Other: Woman vomits in toilet/ urinates in shop doorway, man called gay when sex offer refused, man treats prostitute kindly/ apologizes for slap, man honors elder w/ non-Christian funeral service)
Running Time: 93 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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