“Shanghai Noon” is a Western/martial arts film. It’s exactly what you expect. Add in Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson as the lead actors and it becomes even more predictable. The excellent play on words contained in the title is an overture for the comedy that follows. The plot is simple but effective as two opposite men are placed into a situation in which it is natural for them to pair up to save the day. Why not also represent the Buddy-Cop genre as they work together to save the day. Fans of Westerns and martial arts films will enjoy the many tongue-in-cheek nods to these genres. And fear not, they do mispronounce Princess Pei-Pei's name as Pee-Pee, but only once to keep it from getting old. The acting isn’t anything special but it matches the expectation of a comedy. Personally, I prefer “Rush Hour” but “Shanghai Noon” is a nice departure from Jackie Chan’s typical films.
[Pictured: Who doesn't love Jackie Chan? Seriously!]