Prequel about the formation of the supercool badass who is MARK. Chow Yun-fat is an ordinary civilian until he meets Anita Mui in Saigon and she teaches him to shoot – but why’d they name her Kit when that’s Leslie Cheung’s character name in part one?
Mark tries to do straight business deals in a corrupt, turbulent country with his cousin Mun (Tony 2), keeps getting rescued by Anita. The plan is to close Mark’s uncle’s shop and move him to Hong Kong, but customs fucks up their shit so bad that the uncle (Sek Kin of Enter the Dragon) has a heart attack. Anita saves them yet again and they make it to HK halfway through the movie, but Mark and Mun both love the girl, so they return to Vietnam at the same time her long-lost mentor/bf Ho appears. A circle of vendettas ensues, everyone killing everyone else. You can sing “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” to the theme song. The fun music montages are the bad-80s aspect of an otherwise cool movie, Tsui taking over the series while John Woo renamed his own Vietnam-set pseudo-prequel Bullet in the Head.
Royals Maggie Cheung and Kenny Bee (Shanghai Blues) are in trouble, pursued through the bamboo forest by enemies sent by throne-stealer The 14th Prince, until whale(!) warrior Andy Lau helps them out. They visit the Lord of Lanling for advice and pick up his daughter Anita “Moony” Mui. But the wicked prince (Kelvin Wong of Supercop the same year) has a spy in Maggie Cheung, who attacks our heroes in a black disguise. Things settle down, Andy goes home and the 13th Prince is set to marry Moony, when baddies attack Andy’s village and murder babies, and Maggie double-crosses 14th and he kills her in front of the others. This is all too much violence to stand, so Andy’s orca Sea-Wayne whups 14th’s fuckin’ face, then the tomb of the ancestors smooshes his head in. Almost everyone dies, but Andy and his whale are okay, so there really should’ve been a sequel.
So many Chinese traditions I didn’t know, like virgin boob-sweat tea.
Blunt ghost movie, no tiptoeing around – very good, sharp and funny with some wicked dialogue.
I tried to discover Johnnie To’s early frontiers with A Hero Never Dies, but succeeded with this one – it’s a Tsui Hark-style HK movie, with the horrible comedy and dialogue and crazy action crystallizing into weird perfection.
Opens with a couple agreeing to buy a neglected, secluded house, the deal interrupted by the supercop husband leaping out a window to catch a thief stealing the realtor’s car. He is Damian Lau (just off the Royal Tramp movies), and doesn’t realize his wife Anita Mui (star of Rouge) is the masked superhero known as Wonder Woman, who’s investigating a wave of babynappings, orchestrated by an Evil Master with growling henchman Anthony Wong.
Meanwhile, friendly bounty hunter Maggie Cheung gets a killer introduction jumping her motorcycle over a cop barricade. And Invisible Woman Michelle Yeoh is… wait, she’s working for the bad guys helping steal the babies, and a baby is killed during the first big fight… this trio isn’t so heroic. But Michelle is sad about her inventor boyfriend dying, and she realizes she’s Anita’s long-lost sister, then they all team up to take down the master.
As a train explodes through a building, a dynamite-tossing Motor Maggie leads the fight vs. flying-guillotine-armed Anthony Wong on a landmine-rigged street. There’s too much awesome, looney tunes shit happening to keep close track of plot details, but Anthony must have survived since he returns in the sequel.
The Visible Woman:
Anthony, before his face gets messed up by the Trio: