"Kick ass! Well, not quite."
Bloody Cops (2001)
Director: Kenneth Lau Hau-Wai
Producer: Kenneth Lau Hau-Wai
Cast: Roy Cheung Yiu-Yeung, Ken Wong Hap-Hei, Michael Tong Man-Lung, Pinky Cheung Man-Chi, Stephanie Che Yuen-Yuen, Law Lan, Chan Shu, Sam Ng Yik-Lung, Cheung Wing-Si, Chan Chui-Ting
Running Time: ?
Plot: See Gwailo's review below.
GWAILO'S REVIEW: Wow, what a cool title. A ripping action yarn, set on the mean streets of Hong Kong, balls to the wall shoot-outs, and HK's finest drenched in sangria. Kick ass! Well, not quite. The title, and Hong Kong's penchant for bullet mayhem might lead you to pick up this rather anemic film, but don't be fooled. Bloody Cops is more drama than action. In fact, action makes up all but a few seconds in this police procedural, low budgeter.
A stylish opening credit sequence, where all the main characters are introduced in slo-mo, intercut with the credits, shows promise of a dark bloodshed flick, but quickly disintegrates into a subtle mystery. Subtlety should be nowhere in sight with a cool title like Bloody Cops. Damn, that's a cool title. The deceased body of a young school teacher is found inside a time capsule that the University plans to bury prior to the handover; actually a neat idea. In come the investigating officers. Their subsequent investigation leads to faculty and family flashbacks, screaming praise for the dead, turning the crime into a puzzle. On top of the case comes familial strife for the hard working head investigator Tam (Roy Cheung), who's thoroughness in his job leads to trouble with the Mrs.. His absence of mind and body causes her to masturbate with the handle of a hair brush. The scene is not exploitative, surprisingly, and lends context to their crumbling marriage. Back at work, Tam is frequenting the town with the deceased's now ex, Cheung (Pinky Cheung). Is he trying to find clues or get in her pants? This is played pretty well, setting the film into an unexpected direction. Gone is the hard boiled investigation in favor of a budding romance. Wait a sec! Didn't Cheung's boyfriend just bite it? And what about Tam's poor wife, taking to using the wrong end of a brush to get the kinks out. Something amiss. The script of course settles it as Tam reveals he never really loved his wife( as if this makes it o.k.) and Cheung's dead beau turns out to be a scumbag, who deserved his destiny, his libido besting him, lending his lovemaking to memorex for blackmail. There are some decent twists toward the end, guns are drawn and the fix is in, but it's nothing you haven't seen before.
Low budget auter, Kenneth Lau (Hong Kong History X,Y), wrote, produced, and directed this leisurely paced, atmospheric, crime drama. With a better script, acting (some is just plain awful), the absence of coincidence to make the film go around, the labored plot device known as flashback, not to mention some god damn spent artillery and buckets of blood, the film could have been something. Alas, these cops never get bloody as the title states and the sluggish pace coupled with the misuse of a great title leave the film deservedly overlooked in the bargain bin. But man, that's a cool title.
GWAILO'S RATING: 3.5/10