18. SO MUCH DEATH: The R.I.P. section has been very active this year so today watch a movie with a high body count.
307 people get killed in this movie.
It’s like John Woo looked at the most violent gun culture movies of the U.S. and was like, I can do this so much better.
After getting criticized for making films that glamorized gangsters, Woo wanted to make a Dirty Harry style film to make the police look heroic. He was on his way out of Hong Kong to Hollywood, so this was his final statement on Hong Kong action.
And oh man, this movie never fails to delight.
Inspector “Tequila” Yuen (Chow Yun-Fat) loses his partner and decides to play judge, jury and executioner, forgetting due process and blowing the murderer away. He gets kicked off the force.
Killing machine Alan (Tony Leung) is wiping out all of the gangs in the city and nearly shoots Tequila, saving his life because, well, Alan is also a cop.
Johnny Wong (Alan Wong) is the gangster boss running guns out of a hospital.
Really, you just put all of these characters against one another, throw in a few thousand bullets and sit back and enjoy what comes next.
This is a movie that has Chow Yun-Fat catch on fire and a baby pisses it out. The first time I saw it, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and kept rewinding it. And it gets so audacious by the end, as shopping carts filled with guns are used to decimate bad guys and Western attention spans.
Critics loved The Killer in the U.S. more, but this is a movie made to watch with other people, all shouting and screaming as the action just keeps getting more intense. In fact, I’d say this is my favorite action movie of all time, one that sets a bar that has never been matched since.
I love this so much I accidentally reviewed it twice.