Hitman (1998)
Reviewed by: Arshadnm6 on 2005-04-10
Summary: Decent who-dunnit action flick, not going anywhere......
Fu (Jet Li) is a broke, unlucky ex-soldier (making people feel sorry for him) who accidentally joins a low-rent triad (Eric Tsang) to participate in a $100 million dollar manhunt by killing the unknown ‘King of Assassins’ responsible for the murder of a powerful Japanese crime lord. All of the high-classed international criminals, including the crime lord’s grandson are frantically after the reward. Fu seems to be able to apprehend the culprit, but is too nice and good-natured whilst being constantly deceived and delayed by the low-rent triad. Gigi Leung stars as the low-rent triad’s daughter (a proud and righteous lawyer who is constantly humiliated by her father’s profession and on bad terms with him because of this) and takes a love interest in Fu following some misunderstandings in the beginning. Meanwhile, a maverick cop (Simon Yam Tat-Wah) is relentlessly investigating the intentions of the reward seekers (particularly Fu and the low-rent triad).

Jet Li plays a nice guy in this movie and as a result does not even convince anyone of his background as an ex-soldier and neither does Eric Tsang as a triad member due to his childish. Both of them are the main actors and the movie mainly focuses on their tom foolery and misadventures. The movie constantly carries a low-budget feel at certain points which this movie obviously is not viewing the talented actors offered. The length of this movie is correct and does not over-stretch any issues along with the plot which carries a few subplots and some surprising twists. The mood of the movie is quite level-headed and never gets too furious or serious since it is an action-thriller comedy/crime storyline.

The movie was produced by Gordon Chan (writer/director of ‘Beast Cops’) and directed by Stephen Tung Wai (actor in ‘Hard Boiled’) to set-up a triad-style movie. However, the result is never as convincing and the movie never seems to be moving in any particular direction since the love affair between the Gigi Leung and Jet Li dominates most of the central parts of the movie leaving the rough edges to deal with the manhunt. This is intentionally done to give an opportunity for both Jet Li and Eric Tsang (shifting to a slightly serious role as opposed to his previous movies) to shine through with their performance with reasonable effect (as a result this attempts to show audiences of what these actors have to offer).

Overall, this movie has some good points to offer but breaks no barriers in any way. It also is very watch-able but only for the one time.

Overall Rating: 6.9/10
Reviewer Score: 7