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Rumble in the Bronx

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Rumble in the Bronx
Rumble in the Bronx Hong Kong theatrical poster
Directed byStanley Tong
Written by
  • Edward Tang
  • Fibe Ma
Produced byBarbie Tung
CinematographyJingle Ma
Edited byPeter Cheung
Music by
Paragon Films Ltd.
Distributed byGolden Harvest
New Line Cinema
Release dates
  • 21 January 1995 (1995-01-21) (Hong Kong)
  • 23 February 1996 (1996-02-23) (US)
  • 16 May 1996 (1996-05-16) (Australia)
  • 4 July 1997 (1997-07-04) (United Kingdom)
Running time
  • 106 minutes (HK version)
  • 90 minutes (US version)
CountryHong Kong
  • English[2]
  • Cantonese
BudgetUS$7.5−13 million[3][4]
Box officeUS$76 million
Rumble in the Bronx
Traditional Chinese紅番區
Simplified Chinese红番区
Literal meaningRed Foreigners District[5]

Rumble in the Bronx (Chinese: 紅番區) is a 1995 Hong Kong martial arts comedy film starring Jackie Chan, Anita Mui and Françoise Yip. It was directed by Stanley Tong, with action choreographed by Chan and Tong. Released in Hong Kong in 1995, Rumble in the Bronx had a successful worldwide theatrical run, and brought Chan into the North American mainstream. The film is set in the Bronx area of New York City, but was filmed in and around Vancouver, Canada.[6]


Ma Hon Keung, a Hong Kong cop comes to New York to attend the wedding of his Uncle Bill, who introduces him to his African-American bride-to-be Whitney at his supermarket, which he has sold to Elaine. Uncle Bill's friend Steven Lo loans him a vintage automobile for the wedding. That night, a street gang starts a motorcycle race near Uncle Bill's apartment. They are about to run over his friend's car until Keung jumps down and stops them. He soon starts a rivalry with the gang after driving them away from Elaine's supermarket, which they tried to rob and vandalize. A series of brawls breaks out in which the bikers try to corner Keung and finish him off. After one attack in which the gang members pelt glass bottles at him, Keung returns home badly injured. His neighbor Nancy, a lingerie dancer/associate of the bikers and her younger brother Danny, a Chinese-American paraplegic who's taken a liking to Keung, take care of him and clean his wounds.

When a gang member named Angelo gets involved in an illegal diamond deal gone bad and steals the diamonds, the small-time gangsters become the victims of a larger and more effective crime syndicate led by a man named White Tiger. While running away with the diamonds, Angelo hides them in a cushion which is unknowingly used by Keung for Danny's wheelchair. Keung befriends Nancy and while visiting her at the seedy club she works at, advises her to stay away from crime. When the gangsters see this, they chase Keung and Nancy. After failing to confront Keung, the bikers trash Elaine's supermarket, during which two of Angelo's men are captured by White Tiger's men, who turn up at the supermarket in search of Angelo. Angelo's colleagues are unaware of his diamond heist and one is executed in a tree-shredder; his remains given back to the other gangsters as a warning to return the multimillion-dollar goods. Keung and Nancy go to the bikers' headquarters after the latest supermarket attack, and Keung defeats them in another brawl.

Keung agrees to help the biker leader Tony, where he convinces the street gangsters to reform and brings the big-time criminals to justice. The syndicate and Keung discover the diamonds in Danny's wheelchair. The handover is botched after Nancy and Tony are held hostage by the syndicate and the diamonds are lost after they use a tow truck to destroy Elaine's supermarket. White Tiger's men hijack a hovercraft and are pursued by Keung and the New York Police Department in the Hudson River. The hovercraft ends up running through the streets, causing much damage to property. Keung ends the chase by stealing a six-foot, jagged-sword from a museum, clamping it onto the window of a Lamborghini Countach and driving into the hovercraft, shredding the rubber skirt and crashing the vehicle. After shooting one of the syndicate men non-fatally to force them to reveal White Tiger's location, Keung drives the repaired hovercraft to a golf course where White Tiger is playing with subordinates. Keung runs them over, leaving White Tiger naked on the ground.


  • Jackie Chan as Ma Hon Keung (T: 馬漢強, S: 马汉强, P: Mǎ Hànqiáng)
  • Anita Mui as Elaine
  • Françoise Yip as Nancy
  • Bill Tung as Uncle Bill Ma (T: 馬 驃, S: 马 骠, J: maa5 piu3, P: Mǎ Piào)
  • Marc Akerstream as Tony, leader of the gang
  • Garvin Cross as Angelo
  • Morgan Lam as Danny
  • Kris Lord as White Tiger, the syndicate boss
  • Carrie Cain Sparks as Whitney Ma
  • Elliot Ngok (Yueh Hua) as Walter Wah, the Realtor (T: 華, S: 华) (credited as Elly Leung)
  • Eddy Ko as Prospective market buyer
  • Emil Chau as Ice cream salesman
  • Alex To as Ice cream customer
  • Jordan Lennox as Jordan, a syndicate member with glasses
  • John Sampson as a syndicate member
  • Richard Faraci as a syndicate member with a ponytail who Keung subdues in Danny's apartment
  • Gabriel Ostevic as Gabriel, a syndicate member with a mustache who Keung knocks in the water in the boathouse
  • Terry Howsen as a syndicate member in a black suit
  • Mark Fielding as a syndicate member run over by the hovercraft at the golf course
  • Owen Walstrom as a syndicate member flying into a tree at the golf course
  • Ailen Sit as one of Tony's gang members with a mustache and ponytail, who speaks Cantonese in the supermarket and is the first one who Keung physically confronts
  • Alf Humphreys as a Police Officer
  • Rainbow Ching as Mrs Cheung, worker in supermarket mistaken by Keung as Bill's wife-to-be
  • Richard Epcar as gang member in a ponytail.


Jackie Chan's right foot lands at a bad angle after jumping onto the hoverboat, causing a serious injury that would not heal for the remainder of filming. The shot still made it into the finished movie.

In his autobiography, I am Jackie Chan: My life in Action, Jackie Chan talked about the initial difficulty of filming a movie in Vancouver that is set in New York. The production team initially had to put up fake graffiti during the day and take it all down during the evening, while simultaneously making sure that no mountains made it into the background. However, Chan decided that it was best that the production team focus on the action only without worrying too much about scenery. In his review, Roger Ebert notes that there are mountains in the background, which are not present in the NYC landscape.[7] There is also an NYC helicopter which displays a Canadian civil registration (C-GZPM - A Bell JetRanger).

The original spoken dialogue consisted of all of the actors speaking their native language most of the time. In the completely undubbed soundtrack, available on the Warner Japanese R2 DVD release, Jackie Chan actually speaks his native Cantonese while Françoise Yip and Morgan Lam (the actors playing Nancy and Danny) speak English. All of the original dialogue was intended to be dubbed over in the international and Hong Kong film markets, and New Line Cinema overdubbed and slightly changed the original English dialogue.

During filming, Chan broke his right ankle while performing a stunt. He spent much of the remaining shooting time with one foot in a cast. When it came to the film's climax, the crew colored a sock to resemble the shoe on his good foot, which Chan wore over his cast. His foot still had not completely healed when he went on to shoot his next film, Thunderbolt (filmed the same year, 1994, but released earlier in the U.S.).[8]

The film had a production budget of US$7.5−13 million.[3][4]


The film was the first Chinese film to be simultaneously released in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.[9]

New Line Cinema acquired the film for international distribution and commissioned a new music score and English dub (with participation from Jackie Chan). A scene of Keung's airplane flying into John F. Kennedy International Airport was added to the opening credits. Three scenes were added exclusively for the international version: a shot of the syndicate's car pulling up to the diamond deal, Keung and Nancy escaping from the nightclub after the bikers spot them together, and White Tiger taking a golf shot before a subordinate approaches him with his phone. None of these scenes were in the original Hong Kong release. In comparison to the Hong Kong version, 17 minutes of cuts were made, and the new English dub changed some of the context of the characters' conversations. Keung being a cop and having a girlfriend in Hong Kong is never mentioned. Keung's father being shot by a robber years ago is also not mentioned. In the New Line Cinema edit, Elaine buys the grocery store upon her first meeting with Uncle Bill, but in the Hong Kong version, she decides to buy the market at Bill's wedding.

The new soundtrack replaced Chan's song over the closing credits with the song "Kung Fu" by the band Ash, the lyrics of which mention Jackie Chan, as well as other Asian figures and characters ubiquitous in the west.


Box office[edit]

In Hong Kong, Rumble in the Bronx broke the box office record, earning HK$56,911,136, making it the highest-grossing film in Hong Kong up until then.[10] In China, within ten days of release, the film grossed CN¥100 million (US$15 million) from 10 million tickets sold at CN¥10 each.[11][12] It set a record in Guangzhou, with CN¥3 million grossed in the city.[13] It became the highest-grossing imported film in China up until then,[14] grossing CN¥110 million (US$16.11 million).[12] It was the year's eighth highest-grossing film in Taiwan, earning NT$53,787,720.[15] In Japan, the film earned ¥635 million at the box office.[16] In South Korea, it was the highest-grossing film of the year, selling 941,433 tickets and earning US$5.08 million.[17]

Box office performance
Market Year Gross revenue (est.) Ticket sales
Local currency US dollars
Hong Kong 1995 HK$56,911,136 $7,356,820 1,200,000 [10][18]
China 1995 CN¥110 million $16,110,000 11,000,000 [12][11]
Taiwan 1995 NT$53,787,720 $2,060,705 295,892 [15][19]
Japan 1995 ¥635,000,000 $6,751,000 510,000 [16][20]
South Korea 1995 Un­known $5,080,000 941,433 [17]
North America 1996 US$32,392,047 $32,392,047 7,361,000 [1][21]
Germany 1996 1,816,000 $2,306,000 349,325 [22][23]
Italy 1996 €270,000 $343,000 58,773 [5][23]
Switzerland 1996 €173,000 $220,000 20,571
Sweden 1996 €132,000 $168,000 18,556
Belgium 1996 €69,000 $88,000 13,505
Denmark 1996 €19,000 $24,000 3,162
Czech Republic 1996 €1,100 $1,397 1,222
Spain 1996 €318,000 $361,000 96,309
1997 €9,330 $10,580 2,744
United Kingdom 1997 £801,290 $1,312,000 130,583 [24][better source needed][5]
Hungary 1997 €76,000 $86,000 54,116 [5]
Romania 1997 €20,000 $86,000 40,709
1998 €36,000 $40,000 40,535
1999 €8 $9 11
France 1998 €1,086,000 $1,232,000 204,894 [25]
Total US$76,028,558 22,343,340
Inflation adjusted (2021) US$154,476,114 [26]

The film was Chan's mainstream breakthrough in North America. When the film made its North American premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January 1996, the film drew overwhelmingly positive reactions from large crowds cheering loudly, comparable to a sold-out concert.[27] It eventually got a wide release in February 1996. Opening on 1,736 North American screens, it was number one at the box office in its opening weekend, grossing US$9,858,380 ($5,678 per screen). It became one of the year's top 20 highest-grossing R-rated films, finishing its North American run with $32,392,047[1] (equivalent to $69 million adjusted for inflation in 2021).[21] In the United Kingdom, the film sold 130,583 tickets[5] and grossed £801,290.[24][better source needed] In France and Germany, the film sold 493,756 tickets.[28] In other European countries, the film sold 460,254 tickets.[5]

It became Chan's biggest ever hit up until then,[29] with a worldwide box office gross of US$76 million[30] (equivalent to over $154 million adjusted for inflation in 2021).[26] It was the most profitable film of 1996, with its US box office alone earning over 6 times its $13 million budget.[4]

Critical response[edit]

When released in North America, Rumble in the Bronx received generally positive reviews, with most critics happy that a Jackie Chan film was finally getting a wide theatrical release in North America.[31][32][33] On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an 80% approval rating based on reviews from 55 critics, with an average rating of 6.5/10.[34] Most critics praised the action, stunts, and Chan's charm, but found the plot and acting to be lacking.

Roger Ebert gave the film a positive review, rating it 3 out of 4 stars.[35] His review for the Chicago Sun-Times stated:

Any attempt to defend this movie on rational grounds is futile. Don't tell me about the plot and the dialogue. Don't dwell on the acting. The whole point is Jackie Chan – and, like Astaire and Rogers, he does what he does better than anybody. There is a physical confidence, a grace, an elegance to the way he moves. There is humor to the choreography of the fights (which are never too gruesome). He's having fun. If we allow ourselves to get in the right frame of mind, so are we.[35]

Nate Jones in The Daily Utah Chronicle rated the film 3+12 stars. He described Chan as "the biggest action hero in the world" like a cross between Bruce Lee, Bruce Willis, Charlie Chaplin, and Harrison Ford, and said Chan "has brought the Kung-Fu action picture" genre "roaring back to life" in American pop culture. He praised the action choreography as "a masterfully seamless wave, proving that acting and fighting can coexist, if they're in the hands of a virtuoso." However, he criticized the English dubbing.[36]

In a 1995 review for the Hong Kong Film Critics Society, Stephen Teo panned the film as "at best, an average Jackie Chan picture." He noted that despite the final hovercraft set piece, the action "is offset by the comedy underpinnings of the thin plot."[37]

The film was featured in a 2015 video essay by Every Frame A Painting, calling attention to the fact that the movie was shot in Vancouver despite being set in the Bronx, where no mountain ranges are visible.[38]

Awards and nominations[edit]


In the United Kingdom, the film was watched by 1.1 million viewers on BBC1 in 2008, making it the year's most-watched foreign-language film on BBC.[39] It was later watched by 1.2 million UK viewers on BBC1 in 2009, making it the year's most-watched foreign-language film on UK television.[40] In 2011, it was again the year's most-watched foreign-language film on UK television with 900,000 viewers on BBC1.[41] Combined, the film drew at least 3.2 million UK television viewership on BBC1 between 2008 and 2011.

Home video[edit]

The majority of DVD versions of the film contain the heavily edited US New Line Cinema cut, with the relevant dubs created for each market. However, other versions exist, which are closer to the original theatrical release.


  • A DVD was produced by Warner Brothers HK for Hong Kong and South Korea. This contains the New Line Cinema version with additional abridged Cantonese and Mandarin soundtracks. It has an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, but includes no English subtitles.
  • Warner Home Video also released a DVD in Japan of the Hong Kong version. This version contains the Hong Kong cut of the film. The dialogue is completely undubbed in a mono 2.0. However, its aspect ratio is cropped to 1.85:1 and contains no English subtitles.
  • In Hong Kong, a VCD containing the Hong Kong version in Cantonese, with newly generated English and Chinese subtitles was also released. It's 2.35:1.
  • A Blu-ray was released in the United States on 6 October 2015.


It appears that a joint-distribution deal was made, with Thakral releasing the film in China, and Chinastar releasing it in Hong Kong. This version contains no credits, not even the film title, but is otherwise the Hong Kong version. There are no English subtitles and the ratio is roughly 2.10:1.


Malaysian distributor Speedy released a VCD. As well as local censorship (for profanity - also featuring a substituted shots of Angelo insulting Keung), it has a slightly different Cantonese/English soundtrack (some characters are dubbed in Cantonese); there are English, Chinese and Malay subtitles languages. It is cropped to approximately 1:85:1 and distorted to 1:56:1.


The film had three separate DVD releases by Taiwanese distributor Funny. Two of these DVDs feature the Taiwanese Mandarin-dubbed version with embedded subtitles. One of these contains a Dolby 5.1 soundtrack only, whilst the other contains both Dolby and DTS soundtracks. The third release is a double-sided disc, featuring the Taiwanese Mandarin dub on one side and the English-dubbed New Line Cinema version on the other. Despite containing a dubbed soundtrack, these DVDs are the only releases to contain English subtitles for a Chinese version. All three are presented in 2.35:1.

4 Film Favorites[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Rumble in the Bronx (1996)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 29 November 2018.
  2. ^ "Rumble in the Bronx". BBFC. Retrieved 4 October 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Rumble in the Bronx (1996) - Financial Information". The Numbers. Production Budget: $7,500,000
  4. ^ a b c Brownstein, Bill (27 January 1997). "Jackie Chan rules – on ledgers, too: Rumble in the Bronx earned more than 20 times its cost". The Gazette. p. 15. Retrieved 18 April 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Film #184: Hong Faan Kui". Lumiere. Retrieved 9 June 2020.
  6. ^ "JACKIE BE NIMBLE IN 'BRONX' ASIAN STAR 'RUMBLES' IN & GETS FIGHTING CHAN-CE TO CRACK U.S. MARKET". The New York Daily News. Retrieved 20 September 2010. [dead link]
  7. ^ Ebert, Roger (23 February 1996). "Rumble in the Bronx". Chicago Sun-Times – via RogerEbert.com.
  8. ^ Jackie Chan. "Jackie's Aches and Pains: It Only Hurts When I'm Not Laughing". Random House. Retrieved 19 December 2012.[page needed]
  9. ^ "Chinese lines up for Lies". Screen International. 21 April 1995. p. 25.
  10. ^ a b "Golden Harvest". AboutHK.Com. Archived from the original on 7 July 2011. Retrieved 28 January 2011.
  11. ^ a b 宋洪洁 (Sòng Hóngjié) (March 2011). 影响你一生的北大演讲大全集 [A Collection of Peking University Speeches That Influence Your Life] (in Chinese). Beijing Book Co. Inc. p. 233. ISBN 978-7-5429-2813-9. 《红番区》10块钱一张票,10天票房超过一亿。 ["Rumble in the Bronx" cost ¥10 per ticket, and the box office exceeded ¥100 million in 10 days.]
  12. ^ a b c "Beijing Review". Beijing Review. Vol. 52. 2009. p. 23. Retrieved 29 April 2022. But in 1995, Hong Kong superstar Jackie Chan's Rumble in the Bronx lit up movie screens during the Spring Festival, taking in 110 million yuan ($16.11 million).
  13. ^ So, Alvin Y.; Tay, William S. (2012). Handbook of Contemporary China. World Scientific. p. 397. ISBN 978-981-4350-09-9.
  14. ^ Zhang Rui (19 February 2016). "Top grossing Chinese films all through years". China Internet Information Center. Retrieved 2 March 2020.
  15. ^ a b "1995 Taiwan Box Office". National Chengchi University. Archived from the original on 19 February 2001. Retrieved 29 April 2022.
  16. ^ a b "【ジャッキーチェン興行成績】 第12回:日本での興行収入". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). 2012. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  17. ^ a b "【ジャッキーチェン興行成績】 第10回:韓国での興行収入". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). 5 September 2010. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  18. ^ "UIS Statistics". UNESCO Institute for Statistics. UNESCO. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  19. ^ "53,787,720 TWD to USD". fxtop. March 1995. Retrieved 29 April 2022.
  20. ^ "Statistics of Film Industry in Japan". Eiren. Motion Picture Producers Association of Japan (MPPAJ). Retrieved 30 April 2022.
  21. ^ a b "Hong faan kui (Rumble in the Bronx) - United States". JP's Box-Office (in French). Retrieved 18 April 2022.
  22. ^ "Die erfolgreichsten Filme in Deutschland 1996" [The most successful films in Germany 1996]. Inside Kino (in German). Retrieved 29 April 2022.
  23. ^ a b "Cinema market". Cinema, TV and radio in the EU: Statistics on audiovisual services (Data 1980-2002) (2003 ed.). Office for Official Publications of the European Communities. 2003. pp. 31–64 (61). ISBN 92-894-5709-0. ISSN 1725-4515. Retrieved 23 May 2020.
  24. ^ a b "Rumble in the Bronx". 25th Frame. Retrieved 9 June 2020.
  25. ^ "Hong faan kui (Rumble in the Bronx)". JP's Box-Office. Retrieved 29 November 2018.
  26. ^ a b "Hong faan kui (Rumble in the Bronx) - Receipts". JP's Box Office (in French). Retrieved 18 April 2022.
  27. ^ Meyers, Chris (29 February 1996). "Jackie Chan Rumbles in the U.S.A.". The Daily Utah Chronicle. p. 14. Retrieved 18 April 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  28. ^ "Hong faan kui (Rumble in the Bronx) - Germany". JP's Box-Office (in French). Retrieved 29 April 2022.
  29. ^ Klady, Leonard (19 February 1996). "B.O. with a vengeance: $9.1 billion worldwide". Variety. p. 1.
  30. ^ "ジャッキーチェン映画の製作費と全世界興行成績まとめ". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2018.
  31. ^ Turan, Kenneth (23 February 1996). "Rumble' Gives Stunt King a Fighting Chance to Crack the U.S. Market". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 4 January 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2010.
  32. ^ Holden, Stephen (23 February 1996). "FILM REVIEW;Jackie Chan vs. a Gang". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 September 2010.
  33. ^ Wilmington, Michael (23 February 1996). "Jackie Chan Enthralls With Daredevil Stunts In 'Rumble in the Bronx'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 20 September 2010.
  34. ^ "Rumble in the Bronx". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 30 April 2022. Edit this at Wikidata
  35. ^ a b Ebert, Roger (23 February 1996). "Rumble in the Bronx: Review". RogerEbert.com. Archived from the original on 4 January 2016. Retrieved 24 January 2011.
  36. ^ Jones, Nate (29 February 1996). "Rumble in the Bronx". The Daily Utah Chronicle. p. 14. Retrieved 18 April 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  37. ^ Teo, Stephen (1995). "Rumble in the Bronx(紅番區)". 1995 Hong Kong Film Review. Hong Kong Film Critics Society. Archived from the original on 7 September 2022. Retrieved 7 September 2022.
  38. ^ Every Frame a Painting (13 September 2015), Vancouver Never Plays Itself, archived from the original on 11 December 2021, retrieved 14 November 2016
  39. ^ "Statistical Yearbook 09" (PDF). UK Film Council. 2009. p. 95. Retrieved 21 April 2022 – via British Film Institute.
  40. ^ "Statistical Yearbook 10" (PDF). UK Film Council. 2010. p. 91. Retrieved 21 April 2022 – via British Film Institute.
  41. ^ "BFI Statistical Yearbook 2012" (PDF). British Film Institute (BFI). 2012. p. 125. Retrieved 21 April 2022.

External links[edit]