This is Jackie Chan's 100th movie and marks a century since the Xinhai revolution in 1911 that forever changed the course of China's sovereign history and shaped it into what it is today as the People's Republic of China.
Produced and directed by Jackie Chan himself, I must admit I did not catch the movie because of the man himself. Instead, I was drawn by the historical events, including the downfall of the Manchurian Qing Dynasty, and felt I could have a piece of my ancestry through this short two hours movie charting the events that occurred back in 1911 and 1912.
Starring a stellar cast including Jackie Chan, Winston Chao, Joan Chen, Li Bingbing, Jackie's son Jaycee Chan, Hu Ge, the movie started with the execution of the legendary revolutionary heroine Qiu Jin, who sacrificed her life to help the suppressed and long suffering commoners stand up against the corrupted Qing empire and feudalistic society.
The revolution, led by the famous Sun Yat-sen, Huang Xing etc staged numerous uprisings to put an end to a long reign of Emperors, who ruled over the land and lived a life of luxury behind forbidden palaces as the commoners tolled and sweated their life away in poverty. Empress Dowager Longyu was coerced by Yuan Shikai and the new government to sign the abdication of the throne of her son Puyi, the last Emperor of China, that reduced them to citizens of the new republic and ended the imperial rule.
This event was a critical milestone in the history of China and the republic would not be what it is today without the few revolutionary leaders who believed in dedicating their entire lives to fight for its people to overcome poverty, inequality etc.
I must admit that we are very fortunate not to have been born during that era where there were rampant wars, uprisings, revolutions etc that resulted in countless deaths of innocent lives. We must count our lucky stars that there is a lot more political stability all over the world and be grateful for what we have in this day and age. Not everyone, especially those from the past, can have a life as good as ours.