THE FATAL RAID (2019) Reviews of Hong Kong action thriller

 

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The Fatal Raid is a 2019 Hong Kong action thriller about two elite police teams on a secret operation following a dangerous smuggling ring.

Directed by Jacky Lee from a screenplay co-written by Men Wa Choi and Lam Siu Fu. Produced by Yau Wai Hung and Charlie Wing Fung Wong.

The Yes Culture production stars Aaron Boggs, Sin-Hang Chiu, Jeana Ho, Jade Leung (Black Cat), Min Chen Lin, Patrick Tam, Elaine Tang, Michael Tong and Chiu Hoi Yeung.

Review:

Viewers not accustomed to the wild mood swings of Cantonese popular action-cinema may be caught up short by The Fatal Raid’s intrusions of pop tunes, cleavage shots and self-mocking comedy in what is otherwise a largely relentless barrage of ammunition and characters who walk through it with grim determination.

The twin-timeline is a bit confusing; Hong Kong police dignitaries – with the very visible new addition of a group of alluring, young females – are headed to Macao for a conference. But twenty years earlier a police operation against gun-smugglers went awry, killing innocents, gangsters and cops alike. Now a trio of drugged-up young men, plus the elder veterans of the 1998 raid, are intending revenge over unfinished business.

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A final twist revelation of one character’s secret identity answers some questions about why all this had to happen, though possibly not sufficiently for viewers hoping to keep all the characters and their hidden loyalties straight. Action fans may not mind very much, as the gunfire and stunts continue unabated.

A sequel seems portended at the end, as well. Like as not it will involve a number of the nubile women avengers introduced here – law-enforcement personnel who look barely out of the age in which they might be pictured wearing sailor suits as super-powered schoolgirls in some appalling Japanese fantasy thing. Here instead they go undercover in lingerie and evening wear to crush a Triad. So file this one in the “girls with guns” microgenre, ladies and gentlemen, though there are no actual naughty bits.

Charles Cassady Jr., MOVIES and MANIA

Other reviews:

“There are moments of humour and some heartfelt scenes but this is all about the action so it rarely goes more than a few minutes before a set-piece springs it back to life. Overall, The Fatal Raid has some impressive action scenes but it’s let down by the subtitles which made me lose track of what was going on.” The Action Elite

“Ignore the structural and narrative flaws and we are left with a very solid action movie. It’s great to see Jade Leung back and to see potential in some of the younger cast. Whilst it won’t win any awards, it’s a reminder that Hong Kong cinema can still produce decent action, it’s just a shame that it’s let down by the narrative.” Asian Movie Pulse

Cast and characters:

Aaron Boggs … Interpool Agent
Sin-Hang Chiu … Heng
Jeana Ho … Alma
Jade Leung … Jade
Min Chen Lin … Zhi Hen
Patrick Tam … Tam Sir
Elaine Tang … Elaine
Michael Tong … Hei
Chiu Hoi Yeung … JC
Kristy Yeung … Mrs Tam
Hidy Yu … Shella
Man-kit Yuan … Yuen Sir

Technical details:

1 hour 31 minutes
Aspect ratio: 2.35: 1

Original title:

不義之戰 aka Bu yi zhi zhan

Trailer:

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