Reviewed by: wyeeso
Summary: The plot: the dumb vs. the dumber
Reviewer Score: 6
Judging by the title, I guess I was expecting this film to have somewhat like a psychological mind-game plot (and by that I mean the scheme set up by the character) in general. But too bad, I guess some characters are just way too dumb and/or "smart" to expose some real simple plots, while some characters who think that they are real smart for making a flawless plot turns out to have their plans exposed pretty quickly, making this film less amusing to watch.
There're 2 main plots that have taken place in the story. The first main plot is set up by the "intelligent" Wong Kun Ting (played by Simon Yam), who plans to eliminate his god-brothers so he can take over the international weapons trafficking business for himself. In general, Wong's plot is really simple, and it's not really mind-killing, as he's just sending out assassins to kill off his brothers. In the beginning, Wong plots to secretly betray and kill his elder brother Kiu (played by Kenneth Tsang) during an armory trade, but the plot turns out to be a flawed deployment since there's a survivor who later exposes his plot. Likewise, Wong initially tries to set his other brother, Chan Nam (played by Sun Chien), up so Chan can get arrested or killed by the police during an armory trade. Unfortunately, Wong's plot didn't go too well cuz even the simple-minded Chan quickly figures out that it was all Wong's doing. Oh well, I guess Wong's plot will only work on Kiu's daughter, Amy (played by Wan Yin-Hung), who seems to be totally brainless at several critical moments where she could have got rid of Wong sooner.
The second main plot (or operation) is set up by the police who attempts to take down the international weapons trafficking business by sending two double agents, Lily (played by Emily Chu) and Fai (played by Alex Fong) to get close with Wong and Chan. First, both Lily and Fai gain trust from Chan and help him escape from being assassinated. Then, Lily plots to get closer to Wong and his business by revealing Chan's whereabouts to him. From that point on, there's a bit of a mind-game going on between Lily and Wong cuz while Wong is taking a defense, Lily is trying to gain trust from him and not revealing her identity at the same time. Unfortunately and again, Wong already has an idea that she and one of his thugs are undercover.
Well, I guess there's one final plot that's taken place near the end. After Fai suddenly reveals his true identity to Chan, they both plot to rescue Lily from Wong's hands by mixing in with the buyer's gang during an armory trade. I must say this plot is pretty brilliant, yet unrealistic, cuz their plan didn't get exposed sooner until someone finally realizes Lily's gone.
As for the subplots, I'm not too sure if I follow them. For examples, there's a part where Chan is fighting this female assassin (played by To Gwai-Fa) after his girlfriend is killed, then a scene constantly cuts in showing 2 men being killed by some thugs. I've no clue who they are and why they're being killed, and there wasn't any explanation at all. In fact, the film didn't really explain the female assassin was hired by Wong to kill Chan, it's just my assumption. Moreover, the fact that Lily and Fai are long-term lovers is a bit unexpected and unknown until they both suddenly get emotional with each other, as well as the flashback showing they're lovers, near the ending.
Nobody really has an outstanding performance and role. Simon Yam is still playing as an vicious character, which is always convincing. Alex Fong didn't get much of a role as his character is always "hidden" in the story. Sun Chien hardly gives any emotion, but I guess I'm convinced since his character is supposed to be simple-minded.
As for Emily Chu, she's lovely as ever, and her character stands out more given that she has to play the "mind game" with her target to gain trust. There's also one part I think she's done a pretty decent job is when she struggles rather she should continue to take part in the operation or withdraw herself after seeing another double agent get caught before her eyes.
[The Production Crew:]
In most HK action-crime films from the 80s and 90s, it's truly natural for the characters to use their fists rather than guns in a fight. For this film, the martial choreography is fine, but not as entertaining if you compare it with another classic HK action-crime film.
And the director/script writer should probably work on explaining the subplots with some depths, or else the audiences will be easily confused with the story and relationships between characters.
This film has such an epic ending! When Wong and his thugs have their guns pointed at Chan in a little hut, Lily, who has herself wrapped with explosive materials, pops out and threatens everyone to surrender. Being in a critical situation, Wong agrees to surrender. And when he's about to speak out his terms before making a surrender, his Filipino hitman (played by Kong Long) didn't know Lily is armed with explosive materials and shoots her. And then KABOOM! Everyone that's in and close to the hut is dead! Only Fai survives from the battlefield.
[Worth Watching A Second Time?]
Go ahead and watch it once or twice.
Reviewed by: Inner Strength
You can expect 90 minutes of top entertainment in The Plot, with action serving the main purpose of the film.
Simon Yam plays a triad boss in a family run business, who deals in arms. He has a good relationship with his sister, Amy (Suen Kin), until she finds out that her brother killed their father (Kenneth Tsang). Amy soon discovers that her brother is being watched by the police, and asks undercover cop Lilly (Emily Chu) to do all she can to arrest him. Lilly teams up with partner Alex Fong who go after the boss and his criminal friends.
Its a simple enough story, and very entertaining. The action is of highest quality, even though the overall production of the film looks very cheap. The body count of the film is similar to A Better Tomorrow, and there are countless vehicles destroyed in the car chases.
Although Simon Yam is the main character, Alex Fong is the real star who shines in this film. This is probably the last film I ever saw with Emily Bowie Chu too, before she obviously realised that acting wasnt really her forte (though she wasnt that bad an actress).
If you like crime action films, this is a must, especially if you like that 80s style of Hong Kong cinematography. If production values had been higher, and more time spent on actual production side of things, then this could easily get top marks.