Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hard Boiled (1981)

Forget about Avatar, The Dark Knight and The Matrix. Hard Boiled is THE action film. I could go on listing other action classics, and you are welcome to try yourself, but it's no use. Hard Boiled is so far ahead of anything else that's ever been filmed, in terms of action, it'll make all your favorite action films falter.

Hard Boiled is non-stop action from beginning to end. Violence fly back and forth in a never-ending rain of bullets that only Hong-Kong director John Woo knows how to conjure up. Oh yeah, forget about Face/Off too, even though it was made by the same director.

Hard Boiled is simply da shit!

The script is clever, the music is groovy (in all it's 80s glamour) and the performances by leading actors Chow Yun-Fat and Tony Leung vastly surpasses anything you have ever witnessed in any Hollywood action soup.

The fact that this was made before CGI laid siege on all action films makes it all the better. What you see is real. No green screens and no fake camera gimmickry. There's actually real people doing all that crazy stuff.

Notice how the final scene where the hero kills off bad guys with a baby on his arm (it's on the cover, so no big spoiler) is one single 10 minute shot with no editing. 10 minutes of non-stop action so perfectly choreographed it will literary make your jaw drop.

Although it's a sad fact that the audio is only in mono(!), it also works as a reminder of what simple equipment these guys were working with when they shot this masterwork of a film.


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