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Johnnie To’s Drug War

It isn’t shocking that Johnnie To would make an intense, stylish, and smart gangster movie. The Hong Kong auteur has been doing that for about 25 years. What’s amazing is that this story takes place in China, where movies are epic or wacky but rarely gritty, dangerous, or even cool. As often is the case in To’s movies, Louis Koo plays a character who doesn’t say much or show much but has a dark undercurrent that is subtly and superbly played. As a busted meth manufacturer, he is forced to become a mole for China’s drug squad in conjunction with undercover cop played with conviction by Sun Honglei. Is Koo’s character really helping the cops? Who is really in control?...

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Johnnie To’s Drug War

It isn’t shocking that Johnnie To would make an intense, stylish, and smart gangster movie. The Hong Kong auteur has been doing that for about 25 years. What’s amazing is that this story takes place in China, where movies are epic or wacky but rarely gritty, dangerous, or even cool. As often is the case in To’s movies, Louis Koo plays a character who doesn’t say much or show much but has a dark undercurrent that is subtly and superbly played. As a busted meth manufacturer, he is forced to become a mole for China’s drug squad in conjunction with undercover cop played with conviction by Sun Honglei. Is Koo’s character really helping the cops? Who is really in control?...

Continue reading