Invisible Target

"OK"

Invisible Target Review


Although I'm not totally sure why the Hong Kong film industry seems to have fallen into an irreversible funk, I'm starting to develop a theory after watching Invisible Target: There are no more new ideas. It's all been done. This action-heavy police drama is helmed and co-written by the venerable Benny Chan, who has several memorable Hong Kong flicks to his credit, but this time around it's just one more toss of a very familiar salad. All the elements are there -- the armored car heist, the rooftop chase, the grenade-filled duffle bag, the hijacked school bus full of cute kids, the appalling HKPD body count, the rogue cops -- but what's the twist?

To add some psychodrama, Chan gives each of his three lead cops a different motive for chasing the bad guy. Chan (Nicholas Tse) is mad because his fiancée was killed when the bad guys blew up the armored car. Carson (Shawn Yue) is mad because the bad guys humiliated him. Wai (played by Jaycee Chan, Jackie Chan's son) is mad because the bad guys kidnapped his brother, who was also a cop, and probably killed him. Of the three, Chan and Carson are rule breakers who can't stand authority, while Wai is by the books all the way.

The main bad guy, Tien (Jacky Wu), is also in a foul mood because the armored car money was stolen from him, so away we go, with Tien chasing the money and the three cops chasing Tien and his goons. Cue the car chase. Cue the gun fights. Cue the kung fu. Cue the insanely dangerous rooftop chase. To their credit, the entire cast works extremely hard, as Hong Kong casts always do, stepping in to do their own stunts and suffering through them multiple times, as the entertaining making-of featurette aptly shows. A-list American stars would never put up with being dangled by a wire while being hit by a double-decker bus or enduring a fist fight while standing in a flaming pool of gasoline, but these guys live for it. (If I ever have lunch with Nicholas Tse, I'll ask him two questions:1) What does it feel like to be thrown through not one, not two, not three, but four plate glass windows? And 2) How did it feel to be cuckolded by fellow Hong Kong star Edison Chen?)

All roads in Invisible Target eventually lead back to police headquarters, where a final bloody showdown results in the deaths of countless cops and the near total destruction of the skyscraper, thanks to that duffle bag full of grenades. When the smoke clears, the survivors lick their wounds, congratulate each other on surviving, and live to fight another day in another movie.

There has to be a way to put some new spin on these very old tropes. Do we need to commission the Coen brothers and send them over there to breathe new life into the genre? (Actually, that's kind of a nifty idea.) At their best, Hong Kong actioners are totally fun thrill rides. At their worst, they're boring as hell. Let's find a fresh way to keep those cops busy.

Aka Naam yi boon sik.

Need invisible water!



Invisible Target

Facts and Figures

Run time: 129 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 19th July 2007

Distributed by: Genius Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

IMDB: 6.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Benny Chan

Producer: Benny Chan, Cary Cheng

Starring: as Detective Chan Chun, Shawn Yue as Inspector Carson Fong Yik Wei, Wu Jing as Tien Yeng Seng, as Officer Wai King Ho, as Ronin Tien Yeng-Yee, as Ho Wing Keung, Lam Suet as Loan Shark Cheng

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.