Reviewed by: leepifer
Summary: Nervous film!
I agree that this is not a great film but the mix between classic triad story and outrageous gunfight is just efficient to entertain you and have a good time.
I like Danny Lee "always the same" character:the straight guy who give all to the clan.
David Chiang in a counter-role has charism and we just wait to see him in action...
Many actors give their credit as it is a co-production made for Chang Cheh retreat;he gave all gains to the HK industry.
So there is a real plot about loyalty and confrontation.
As said,the gunfight scenes are exciting and fast,violent and in typical HK way.John Woo gives his style in a pragmatic way and bullets are everywhere!
The interesting point is the role of Stephen Chow.His play of the young nervous but faithful guy shows his acting abilities and he is the "nerve" in the film.While Danny Lee and others try to be worthy,Chow just want to fight!
An honest unoriginal film but worth to see as it is a sort of "sacred union" of HK directors/producers/actors heavyweights!(Woo,Lee,Hark...)
Reviewed by: ElectraWoman
Summary: 7/10-Not Woo's best, but this is a charity film...
I think a lot of people, in canning this film as muddled, also forgot that this was done in a rush. This was a charity film, with everyone working for free, and completed in a flash. Of course, it's not going to be perfect, and of course, there's going to be dodgy moments.
Once you think of the film this way, they did a great job :) I liked how they deconstructed the hero myth, and also I liked how the female characters got more attention than most John Woo films. The end fight in the mansion is quite spectacular, but I thought the intrigues that were set up were too simplistic. Overall, I thought it was entertaining viewing.
Reviewed by: TequilaYuen
Summary: Good John Woo Action, but Patented Characterization Missing
I would really liken this film to the Replacement Killers. Antione Fuqua had a real feel for the Hk style gunfights and editing, but that all has to be backed by good characterizations. This film was much the same way.
Co directed in part by Wu Ma and John Woo (it's obvious Woo didn't write this). The plot concerns itself with the death of a head triad and the internal struggle over who will take over. There are many doublecrosses and scenes ofnervous gangsters. But I really couldn't follow the film well. I have watched it twice now and I still can't remember any characters names and the causes of some of their actions.
Overall, the plot is cofusing- VERY confusing. The gunplay sequences are perfectly filmed and show much of the technical skill he later had perfected in Hard boiled. one big problem in the end is a very unfunny sidekick who makesjokes (mostly slapstick uuuggghhh! ).