Another Donnie Yen, Classic Gangster film
Hassan Howard | Brooklyn, New York United States | 09/26/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For some strange reason, Donnie Yen disappeared off of the Hong Kong movie scene for some time. This is one of the movies that heralded his return. Donnie Yen is one of the most under rated Action movie stars around. Trained by his Mom, Bo Mak Sim, a famous Tai Chi GRANDMASTER, he can move like lightening, and kick with the best. If you are not a HK movie buff, you may not even know who he is. Let's start by saying , he played one of the leads in IRON MONKEY. [If you don't have IRON MONKEY in your HK movie collection, you don't HAVE an HK movie collection]. He was the man with the "Shadowless Kick".There are two stories in this film. First, Donnie play CAT, a strange, former cop, who is obsessed with revenge. I'm not sure of the work he does, the film never explains that. But you will not care. For the action scenes are excellent.The second story is about the policewoman, Carrie, who is played by Annie Wu. Carrie and Cat's paths cross, as she is involved in the investigation of a series of Gangland murders.Let me say this, the opening action scene is worth the price of admission. Donnie Yen is at the top of his form, both in combat style, and film technique. A lot of this is the work of the cinematographer, Wong Kai Fai. There are a lot of combat scenes in this film. This is a modern HK gangster film, NOT a "classical" Shaolin martial arts film. So, you do not see the elaborate fight scenes. Nor are frames "sped up", like in Donnie's other film, "Legend of the Wolf". BUT, you get a serious amount of hard core HK gangster Butt Kicking! Fists, feet, elbows, gun butts, and various objects in the room, all are displayed in real fighting style. Very stylistic, it's not up to the standards of the Master Sifu, John Woo, or Ringo Lam. But you will be quite happy with what you get.There is an apparently, unaccredited appearance by the EXCELLENT action star, Yu Rong Guang. To tell you more would be a serious spoiler. But you know that he and Donnie mixed it up in IRON MONKEY. And if you have seen him in THE BIG BULLET [BUY this movie NOW], you know he can be positively Murderous! So, expect the best.There is supposed to be a "love affair" in the story. For my money, you would need the Psychic Friends Network to find it. But you don't watch this kind of film to see love stories!A few technical details. Sadly, the film comes in Dolby MONO. It's letterbox, with a nice transfer. Even the night scenes are clear, and crisp. Nice for an HK film. In Cantonese, and Mandarin, with English subtitles.Overall, a great HK gangster, action film. I have over 600 HK films, and have watched this one over and over. Look for Donnie's patented, double flying split! Like John Woo's birds, it's in every one of his films. Buy it.Hassan Howard"
Kevin | Vanouver, BC, Canada | 01/03/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I have to admit, this movie is great with a couple of minor flaws.
-Note: Ballistic Kiss is a gun fight movie and not a "martial arts" movie, so if you're expecting Donnie Yen to do the "Shadowless Kick" look somewhere else.The action is great and is so incredibly stylish. The lighting, music, and action complement each other perfectly. Watching the fights is like ballet, except with guns and blood. The flaws are the storyline and the acting by the female lead.Well, you should buy this DVD if you want to see action that stylishly cool and Donnie Yen with really "unique" sunglasses."
A stylish movie.
Kevin | 12/14/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"No one makes gangster films like John Woo did anymore, not even John Woo himself. Ballistic Kiss is another attempt to revive or prolong the genre, and it apparently failed. Like many HK movies in the genre and befitting its title, Ballistic Kiss is over-loaded with bullets but suffers from a thin plot. However, if it did not succeed in becoming a great film, at least it was a good try. The movie is simply STYLISH. It has great visuals, every frame is masterfully shot, scene transitions are smooth, and the sound track is unusually good for a HK movie.Donnie Yen directed, starred in the film, and choreographed for the action scenes. An ambitious filmmaker, he managed to give the film a fresh look. It is during some non-action scenes that his unique vision is manifested. After a bloody battle, the killer dances alone in a dark enclosed room, for a moment, the world around him seems to have disappeared. It is surreal."