So far we have seen duty trump a romance in Roman Holiday and in Adventures in Babysitting, an understanding that the friend zone is not such a bad place. Today, we discuss a movie where I think most people forget the guy does not ride off into the sunset with the girl, but instead chooses his bachelor life and his truck. For those that are not familiar, today we are talking about the John Carpenter film that is the pinnacle of a good bad movie.
Big Trouble in Little China (1986)
Wait.... Jack Burton (Kurt Russell) doesn't get Gracie Law (Kim Cattrall) in the end? Not after the kidnappings, the fighting, the destruction of mystical Chinese magicians? Nope, not even memorable lines such as "Would you stop rubbing your body up against mine, because I can't concentrate when you do that."
You must remember Jack Burton simply offered to go with his friend Wang Chi (Dennis Dun) to pick up Wang's fiancee Miao Yin (Suzee Pai) from the airport. Then the next thing you know, she is kidnapped by the Lords of Death (the incident that gets the attorney Gracie Law - oh yes, put that all together now, involved), Then The Three Storms are bringing mystical thunders, rain, and lightning down on the streets of Chinatown, not to mention top baddie Lo Pan (James Hong) and his evil plans.
Even Jack's truck gets stolen (the nerve!). All because a green-eyed girl is needed to break an ancient curse. Tsk Tsk. Throughout all the over-the-top fight scenes, a lead who refers to himself in the third person, and the rescue of not one, but two dames in distress, you do get one happy ending. The one that started the whole series of events: Wang and Miao.
We should have known Jack Burton was a loner at this point. He might take the kiss, but really his truck is his lady. He even hinted at his past relationships - Like I told my last wife, I says, "Honey, I never drive faster than I can see. Besides that, it's all in the reflexes." - clear sign Gracie might be better off in the department of permanent boyfriend material.
Sometimes the knight in shining armor is just there for the rescue, not the "and they lived happily ever after." Personally I am okay with that, especially in regards to one Jack Burton. Remember to check back next week for the final installment of the series, but in the meantime, remember - the adventure is sometimes more important than love everlasting.