HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
PTU
Superdeep
Insignificance
Treasure City
Piccadilly
Parallel
Invasión
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
State Funeral
Army of the Dead
Initiation
Redoubt
Dinner in America
Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes
   
 
Newest Articles
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
   
 
  Breaking News Extra! Extra!
Year: 2004
Director: Johnnie To
Stars: Richie Ren, Kelly Chen, Nick Cheung, Siu-Fai Cheung, Shui Hung Hui, Suet Lam, Yong You, Haifeng Ding, Haitao Li, Simon Yam, Maggie Siu
Genre: Action, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Inspector Cheung (Nick Cheung) is sitting with his police partner in their car, watching for signs of life from a nearby apartment because inside are the notorious criminal Yuen (Richie Ren) and his gang, preparing to embark on a robbery. However, when they do emerge, a couple of uniformed cops approach them for their accomplice's bad driving, and they get into an argument as Cheung sits and sweats. Finally it looks as if the cops are moving away, but suddenly the gangsters shoot them dead and a full scale gunfight erupts - what will the media say?

I ask about the media because that's what the film is preoccupied with, that is, how news is represented by them, and how the police in particular come across. One of director Johnnie To's typically stylish thrillers, it was scripted by Hing-Ka Chan and Tin-Shing Yip and its themes and concerns lifted a fairly standard action suspense piece above the norm. Unfortunately, by the time the ending comes around the action has taken over at the expense of the earlier thoughtfulness, but the film was effective enough nonetheless.

In a bit of showing off, that opening sequence, complete with gunfight, is shot all in one go, a continuous item of camerawork that, once you notice what's happening, is undeniably impressive, especially for an action scene. The gun battle spreads into the rest of Hong Kong with Yuen and his allies chased by Cheung and his backup until they all end up at the apartment block where most of the film takes place. Despite being told not to, Cheung follows the bad guys in, and a siege is what follows when the hordes of cops arrive soon after.

But before that we are offered a dialogue with Commissioner Rebecca Fong (Kelly Chen) and her superior, as he is looking for answers about how to calm down the populace and Fong thinks she has the answer: public relations. Not only that, but have the police filming their own footage to give to the media so they can both be on friendly terms with them and go some way to controlling what is and isn't seen. Naturally, when all the lawmen turn up at the apartment block the TV and newspapers aren't far behind; this is a big story after all.

The media don't have one single representative in Breaking News as they did in say, Die Hard, they're more of a faceless, grasping entity that the police are desperate to control. But the accusing fingers continue to point when doctored footage of an assault on the evildoers is sent out to the television producers, which is swiftly contradicted by footage the gang broadcast to them, so that the fight is both over the airwaves and inside the building. Meanwhile, Cheung struggles to contain the situation as Yuen takes a single parent family hostage while Fong is more worried about how they're going to look on the box. As I say, the need to wrap this up in an exciting package somewhat sabotages a provocative angle on a well worn genre, but perhaps the thrills are all you're watching it for, in which case it should satisfy. Music by Ben Cheung and Chi Wing Chung.

Aka: Daai Si Gin.

[Tartan's Region 2 DVD has a trailer and behind the scenes featurette as extras.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3718 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: