#3. 21-Story Skyscraper Slide from Who Am I?
This is another film written and directed by Jackie himself. Maybe you can blame the following two sentences on the chunks of his brain that fell out during his Project A skull injury, but here goes: In Who Am I? Jackie Chan plays a character named both "Jackie Chan" and "Who Am I?" He loses his memory after special forces attack a meteor, and he joins an African tribe and a rally car race before stopping an international space weapon smuggling operation staffed entirely by kickboxers. So crumple up that screenplay you're working on, awesome 8-year-olds. Jackie Chan already made it.
Although "story" seems like such an inadequate word for it, the story of Who Am I? culminates with Jackie in a fistfight at the top of a Rotterdam skyscraper. He drops an important disk off the roof and knows his only chance at getting it back is sliding 21 stories down the side of the building. When Jackie Chan, the actor, saw the leap that his character, Jackie Chan, was supposed to make, he had two words to say. The first one was "SHIT." Obviously. The second one was "YES," but it took him two weeks to say it. That's how long the world's most derangedly brave man took to work up the nerve to do this stunt.
Why Was It Unnecessary?
This was an unassisted free fall down a skyscraper. In 1997, there were any number of safety harnesses or camera tricks that could have been used to create the effect of a man sliding off a building. Well, safety harnesses and camera tricks are how cowards applicate their tampons. That being said, would it really have been cheating if someone had put a crash pad or two in the place Jackie was very, very likely to tumble off to his doom? And speaking of tumbling, he spent the entire fall doing unneeded somersaults and twists. He even stood up and scampered on his feet for a bit. Maybe he thought a semi-controlled slide down a skyscraper was too dull? Maybe he saw the Grim Reaper on the way down and had to dodge him? I honestly don't know, but it must take a team of groundskeepers three days to shave the entire surface area of Jackie Chan's balls.
You crazy, crazy fucker.
#2. Rolling Over a Circular Saw from Mr. Nice Guy
In Mr. Nice Guy, Jackie Chan plays a martial artist named Jackie, because at this point in his career, he figures you're not paying attention to the parts between the fights and the stunts. Plus with all the drugs, kicking, and sassy female reporting in Mr. Nice Guy, a main character named Jackie helps remind viewers that it's not a Jean-Claude Van Damme film.
Are you positive? I sure feel like I'm in a Jean-Claude Van Damme film.
The grand finale of the movie involves Jackie driving over a drug dealer's house in a 120-ton dump truck, but the most memorable stunt takes place on a 24-inch table saw.
Jackie is fighting a construction site full of men and finds himself being fed crotch-first into a real, whirring circular saw -- and that's not even the unnecessary part. That comes moments later with this:
Why Was It Unnecessary?
He barrel rolled over a fucking sawing table saw. By now you know enough about Jackie Chan to know that turning it off or replacing it with a fake blade was not an option, but why roll in that direction in the first place? Let's examine the scenario:
Try to make the decision from Jackie Chan's perspective. On your right are three already defeated enemies and one tiny man who has proven to be no match for you over the course of many unanswered face punches. On your left is the spinning saw blade that was recently screaming against your nuts. OK, it looks like you're about to go left, so let me remind you that if you choose that direction, you'll at best land in a splintery pile of debris and at worst be chewed into liquid. You're still doing it!? Fine, but at this point, it feels like you're mocking Death for the sheer sport of it.
I talk about Jackie Chan's balls, but you have to admire the henchman who still charges in after all his co-workers have been kicked to sleep.
#1. Hot Pepper Fistfight from Project A Part II
By far the most needlessly painful stunt in Jackie's career happened during Project A Part II. He was losing a fistfight, so he evened the odds by chewing up hot peppers and spitting the juice onto his knuckles. You probably already know what I'm about to say, but the goddamn hot peppers were real. Jackie Chan is so unnecessarily Method that he pays his father's palm a dowry before asking his own hand to masturbate.
Why Was It Unnecessary?
Judging by this, it looks like it might be easier for an actor to pretend he's been hit in the eye with hot peppers when he hasn't actually been hit in the eye with hot peppers.
For more of his articles on martial arts masters, see 7 Superpowers That Steven Seagal Actually Believes He Has or 5 Self-Defense Books for Women (Who Want to Lose a Fight).