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重裝警察 (2001)
Hit Team

Reviewed by: Libretio
Date: 10/17/2005
Summary: Low budget action-drama, tinged with melancholy

HIT TEAM (2001)

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Sound format: Dolby Digital

Members of an elite police squad investigate a series of raids on an underground Triad bank, carried out by rogue officers to fund medical treatment for a colleague (Chin Kar-lok) who was injured in the line of duty.

Minor league crime drama, toplined by rising star Daniel Wu as the team leader torn between devotion to duty and compassion for his quarry's altruistic motives. Unfortunately, Wu is much too young for the role, and he allows himself to be upstaged by co-star Alex To (SKYLINE CRUISERS) as the wayward cop prepared to sacrifice everything for his beloved friend (veteran actor/director Chin). Action specialist Dante Lam (JIANG HU: THE TRIAD ZONE, THE TWINS EFFECT, etc.) overcomes the limitations of a meager budget to fashion a series of dynamic set-pieces, though he relies heavily on the combined efforts of cinematographer Tony Cheung and editor Chan Kei-hop to shape the material accordingly. Like so many HK movies before it, HIT TEAM is tinged with melancholy, as good men are forced to sublimate their law-abiding instincts for the greater good, regardless of the consequences, and the movie is strengthened considerably by this emotional undercurrent.

Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 06/12/2005
Summary: quite ambitious but flawed

Daniel Wu stars as the head of Hit Team, an elite force within the SDU hierarchy that investigates crimes committed with heavy, high calibur automatic weapons . His group is assigned to a robbery of an 'underground bank', a triad money 'clearinghouse'.

After seeing Dante Lam's Jiang Hu - The Triad Zone last year, I was really looking forward to this new work. Jiang Hu was well crafted and had great performances from Tony Leung and Sandra Ng. Lam's new film is a return to the subject matter of some of his earlier work with producer Gordan Chan [Option Zero].

The screenplay by Clarence Lee and Jack Ng from a story by the director is quite ambitious but is, sadly, flawed by trying to hard. The story is about two groups of cops, Hit Team and another group, best friends who compete as the the Royal HK Police rugby squad. This second group is splintered when one of them [Chin Kar Lok] is wounded and paralised on an undercover assignment. As a result of false information from a cowardly superior, he is fired from the force. The friends feel the injustice of his plight and determine to commit crimes to pay the millions of dollars needed for his recovery.

Meanwhile, the members of Hit Team are having some issues themselves, some on the job and some off of the job. The screenwriters include a lot of melodramtic scenes to define the characters and their motivations. The script cuts between the two groups, ultimately bringing them together for the final act.

The real strength of Hit Team is in the casting. All the performances are top notch. Special kudos go out to a couple of the supporting actors, Tony Ho and Joe Lee. Tony Ho is young, energetic actor who has been in a number of films [Erotic Nightmare, Sexy and Dangerous 2] recently. He is outstanding here as a troubled SDU member. Joe Lee who made a big impression as the coldblooded killer in Bullets Over Summer scores again as a nasty, double-crossing triad bodyguard.

Copyright 2001 John Crawford. All rights reserved.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: Jackal
Date: 11/29/2004
Summary: It is Great action film

"Hit Team" is a stern police story. The Plot resembles to "Rock" (1996) with Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage. Good cops Vs Ex-good cops. Daniel Wu is Cool. Action episodes make very thrilling. It is Great action film.

Reviewed by: mehaul
Date: 02/04/2003

Well-acted police drama. The strong loyal-themed plot is reminiscent of classic Woo. Daniel Wu and Alex To's fine performances make you forget the thin predictable plot. 7.5/10

Reviewed by: S.A. Winters
Date: 11/15/2002
Summary: The Hit Team go all out to help a fellow officer

One thing I love about reviewing these movies is no matter how thin the plot, how obvious the story line, or how wooden the dialogue, we watch because they are still so damn enjoyable! I liken Hit Team to The Tigers: Srong central characters with a good moral center forced into an amoral situation. At least with the Hit Team, they are robbing to help a fellow brother who was hurt in the line of duty. However, insurance won't pay for the one doctor in Switzerland that can heal him ( don't you love it!)
Of course there are a crack team of investigators trying to figure out who is pulling off these high tech robberies ( DUH?)
Anyway, the movie has some great action set pieces, and I'm always a sucker for the over sentimental "help our brother" story line. The dvd I bought has some good special features. A making of, and some interviews ( no subtitles though)

Reviewed by: Inner Strength
Date: 05/20/2002
Summary: Entertaining if nothing else.

This is one of Dante Lams best films I would say, Hit Team is an action film surrounding members from CIB. However, action is the best part of the film, as the story is very thin and uneven, and the main performers don’t really shine in comparison to other films they’ve done (especially Daniel Wu, though Alex To seems a little more suited to his character than Daniel is).

Still, it would seem most people either love it or hate it here, I would be more inclined to agree with those who like it, as it is very entertaining. But like I said, action and entertainment is all Hit Team has to offer, so if you like films like that then this would be a must.

Rating: [3.5/5]

Reviewed by: bastardswordsman
Date: 01/09/2002
Summary: Enjoyed it

It held my interest well enough, until the formulaic action sequence at the end, which is the point at which my interest started to wane. It takes quite a serious angle, but this is wasted by certain parts of film which ask too much in terms of plausability. The whole premise itself is character based and this is an area which is handled well by Dante Lam, he seems to have a knack for portraying strong charaters on film.

Strong performances are provided by Daniel Wu especially in a more mature role as I have been used to seeing (se also PEONY PAVILLION) and I thought one of the buddies was played by Sam Lee Chan Sam's co-star from THE LONGEST SUMMER (Gary Lai Chi Ho perhaps?), but his lack of a credit on this site leaves me doubting, although I am pretty sure -- Additional note: he is called Tony Ho Wan-chiu and does appear in LONGEST SUMMER (cheers Miles Crew).

I would recommend HIT TEAM as an entertaining offering from Dante Lam, more so than the previous, and somewhat related, OPTION ZERO.

Reviewed by: MilesC
Date: 01/09/2002
Summary: Disappointing.

Dante Lam's "Jiang Hu: The Triad Zone" raised my hopes for Hit Team, which I hoped would combine the technical prowess he showed in Option Zero with the ability to develop a story that he seems to have developed since then. Unfortunately, Hit Team is crippled by many of the same problems that Option Zero had.

The way the story and its conflict is structured is inherently flawed, and drags the movie down. There are three groups- the good cops, the rogue cops, and the bad guys. Lam tries to flesh out the characters of both the police "factions," or at least convey the character of the team as a whole. Unfortunately, this is almost impossible to do adequately in a film that runs 85 minutes. There is enough screen-time devoted to character issues to slow the pace significantly, but none of it carries any weight; Daniel Wu's guilt over a colleague's death is barely touched upon, and Alex To's relationship with Ruby Wong doesn't add up to much. The rest of the characters are so underdeveloped that the time might as well not have been wasted on them. The thinness of the characters might've been easier to overlook if the film had pursued its ethical dilemma to a tougher conclusion, but it instead ducks responsibility by glossing over it with a plot device.

All this wasted character development slows the pace down considerably, but even the story itself isn't that riveting. The investigative techniques are bland, and the police come off as ineffectual. The audience already knows everything before the characters do, so there's no discovery or guessing games.

Initially, even the action scenes seem disappointing, appearing rarely and briefly. There isn't a really satisfying shootout until about the 70th minute. At that point, however, the film finishes with two of the most impressive gunfight scenes in a long time, probably topping the impressive work done by Lam's mentor Gordon Chan in last year's 2000 AD. Although there are a few unforgiveable lapses in plausibility, these two scenes are loud and exciting, and probably make the film worth at least one watch for action buffs. It's a crying shame that they're tacked on the end of a movie that is otherwise wasted potential.

UPDATE: What was I talking about? This movie is actually fairly solid. It's true that the character development is so underdone that they might as well have not wasted their time and that the investigative process is presented without much zip, but this is actually a pretty well-made action film with a good premise and, like I mentioned, a couple of great shootouts. While Daniel Wu lacks credibility due to his youth, Alex To does a pretty good job with what he's given, I think, and he looks good in the role. Overall, the movie still has its problems, but is fairly recommendable to fans of this sort of movie.

Reviewed by: Sydneyguy
Date: 08/08/2001
Summary: Ok-ish!!

Well a interesting twist in this movie where it's good guys vs. the good guys doing bad things vs. the bad guys!!
Get it??

The concept seems plausable but could it really happen in real life? Would you risk your life to save your friend when there's a possiability you'll all die in the process??

Daniel Wu gives a stern performance where he's the leader of the HIT TEAM but he seems very young to be a leader.

The action in this is very much "Hollywood" styled with lots of guns and explosions. Making people sound like they are the best of the best in their field, i find is very Hollywood like anyway!!

OVerall, a bit thin on the story line but the concept is reasonable. Watch it for the action or for brotherly love. Nothing more!!


Reviewed by: resdog781
Date: 07/26/2001
Summary: thumbs down

yet another SDU movie that my dad likes so much, but I didn't really care fore. Unfortunately, I watched this movie and "Time & Tide" in the same week, so I guess this movie had an unfair disadvantage.

This time, a bunch of ex-cops rob an underground triad bank to pay for the treatment of one of their injured friends. Daniel Wu and his Hit Team (read: SDU team) track them down while the mob is searching for the same crew cos...you know. They robbed their secret underground bank.

A bunch of SDU action, and a so-so gunfight in the middle of a traffic jammed freeway managed to keep me awake for most of this movie. But I thought the Hit Team (created to keep the streets clear of illegal firearms) was a little lenient with it's treatment of the ex-cops when they finally caught up with them. I give this one a sideways thumb, teetering in a downward motion.

One more thing: is it just me or does the female Hit Team member look like she could be in some sort of HK film version of "Resident Evil"??

Think about that one, you HK producer types! Save the money you could've spent on 5 horrid Triad/Rave movies and make one big huge SDU/zombie/action/horror movie! :)

Reviewed by: MrBooth
Date: 05/27/2001
Summary: No Jiang Hu, but not bad

HIT TEAM - Disappointing given that it was Dante Lam's follow up to Jiang Hu, though probably a pretty good film in its own right. Some members of the SDU get pissed off when a member of the team is injured in action and the police refuse to pay for treatment (from the one surgeon in Switzerland who can perform the surgery, naturally). They decide to rob some underground bankers to raise the cash. Daniel Wu's Hit Team get involved in the case, and follow a series of blindingly obvious clues to identify the perpetrators, but then has to face the moral dilemma brought about by the motivations they have for what they do. There's some v. stylish sections, and a great sound mix, and some pretty explosive action. Not a lot else though.

Reviewer Score: 5

Reviewed by: xiaoka
Date: 05/26/2001
Summary: Pretty good.

I liked it. A decent, entertaining action movie. The plot is pretty interesting - a close knit group of SWAT officers quit and cross the thin blue line to help raise money for their wounded comrade.

Daniel Wu plays a cop who discovers the identity of the cops turned criminals and is faced with the descision of whether to help them or arrest them.

The action sequences were very well done, the plot was a bit confusing at times, there are a LOT of characters to keep track of (4 'bad cops,' 4 'good cops' a bunch of semi-insignificant mobsters, assorted girlfriends, bosses, etc). Its too hard to develop that many characters...

It almost seems like a lot got cut out of the film, since some of these people, and their associate subplots (namely the girlfriends) get just a minimum of development to the point you wonder 'why is this person even in the film?'

But all in all the film still holds up. The performances were all pretty solid. Maybe a little more resolution at the end would have helped, but I still liked it.

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: TKC
Date: 05/23/2001
Summary: This film hits

I disagree with the other recieves slagging off Hit team. It is a well paced film and is only let down by a hasty ending. The films action is as good as you're likely to see come out of Hong Kong this year and surpasses those in Purple storm. The use of the SDU equipment is refreshing to see and the acting from Daniel Wu and cast is top notch, but Alex To steals the show.

All in all, a fine film and well worth a little investment.

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: Paul Fox
Date: 03/03/2001
Summary: Hit Team A Near Miss

Hit Team longs to be one of those fancy task force films along the lines of First Option. The premise starts off well enough with the once noble cops turning in their badges and going rouge to help a buddy.  The plot device of pitting cop team against cop team becomes rather interesting (unlike other films of this genre, which often feature a team of foreign mercenaries against Hong Kong's finest), but it never really delivers.  By the climax of the film the story has worked it's way back to a very predictable resolution.

The performances are standard. Daniel Wu seems a bit young for his role, and the characters in his unit follow some traditional stereotypes.  The villains are the typical cardboard role gang bosses.  The real performance here is by Alex To as the former cop who is willing to sacrifice himself for his friend. He brings a sense of loyalty to the character that makes the decision to go rogue almost seem credible.

The action sequences are good, but still nothing to write home about.  The cinematography attempts to put the viewer inside the head of a task force member at times, but the result is less that pleasing.  The music is almost non-existent and it seems that most of the budget went into acquiring firearms and hiring the firearms consultant.

By the end of the film the moral pops up and asks was it worth it to help your buddy?  But by this time the audience will more likely be wondering, was it worth it to spend their money for the ticket?

Overall review rating : 2.5 out of 5

Review by Paul Fox

Location:  Fanling Town Center Cinema

Time: Sunday 25  February   2:30pm