Flash Point (film)
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Hong Kong film poster
|Mandarin||Dǎo Huǒ Xián|
|Cantonese||Dou6 Fo2 Sin3|
|Directed by||Wilson Yip|
|Produced by||Nansun Shi
|Written by||Szeto Kam-Yuen
|Music by||Chan Kwong-Wing|
|Editing by||Cheung Ka-Fai|
|Distributed by||Mandarin Films Distribution Co. Ltd.|
|Running time||88 minutes|
Flash Point, also titled City Without Mercy, is a 2007 Hong Kong action and thriller film directed by Wilson Yip, starring Donnie Yen, Louis Koo, Collin Chou, Xing Yu, Lui Leung-wai and Fan Bingbing. Yen was also the action choreographer and a producer for the film. In this film, Yen plays a police sergeant who plants his partner (Louis Koo) as a mole in a pursuit against a triad led by three Vietnamese brothers (Collin Chou, Lui Leung-wai, and Xing Yu).
Flash Point was repeatedly hailed as a prequel to the 2005 film SPL: Sha Po Lang, which was Wilson Yip and Donnie Yen's first feature-film collaboration as director and star respectively. Yen denied the SPL prequel reports, claiming that Flash Point was a completely original film. Principal photography began in Hong Kong from November 2006 to March 2007. For his conception of Flash Point's major fight sequences, Yen relied on the use of mixed martial arts, working alongside an international group of martial artists. His work as a choreographer won him "Best Action Choreography" awards at the 27th Hong Kong Film Awards and the 2008 Golden Horse Film Awards. Flash Point was released in Hong Kong on 9 August 2007. It was a box office hit during its two month theatrical run in China, despite receiving mixed reviews. It had also premiered at the "Midnight Madness" program of the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival. Flash Point was later given a limited theatrical release in North America on 14 March 2008, before being released on DVD by The Weinstein Company as part of Dragon Dynasty's collection of films.
PlotSet in pre-1997, before the return of Hong Kong to the People's Republic of China, the film opens with brothers Archer, Tony and Tiger discussing a drug deal with Sam, a rival gang leader. Ma Jun, a serious criminal investigations detective (who has been reprimanded for frequently inflicting injury on suspects), along with his team, raids the nightclub for investigation, and winds up fighting against his partner, Wilson, who has been planted as a mole.
The three brothers are later confronted by Sam and his gang, who are impatient over receiving the drugs from the brothers' native Vietnam, but they are kept at bay with violence and intimidation. The brothers later threaten the elder leaders of their gang, when they attempt to intervene. Tiger is later assigned to kill Sam in his car, but the plan fails when Wilson intervenes. While in hospital, Sam agrees to testify in court against the three brothers. On the night of their mother's birthday, the brothers plan to recover their drug money, but as the heist is being performed, Archer is arrested by Hong Kong police, while Tony and Tiger discover that Wilson is a mole and attempt to get rid of him.
While in court, Archer is forced to turn in all of his travel documents, in hope that he will not flee from Hong Kong before his hearing. Tiger and Tony brutally murder Sam along with several other witnesses and crime figures crucial to the police investigation. After their first plan to kill Wilson fails, Tony and Tiger disguise themselves as janitors to sneak into the hospital where he is being protected by police. Ma and Tiger both end up being in the same elevator and Tiger attempts to kill Wilson with a silenced pistol once he appears, but Ma is aware of him and at the last moment engages him in a fierce struggle. After being disarmed, Tiger attempts to escape, but Ma gives chase until he corners him at an outdoor restaurant. Tiger uses a little girl as a hostage and then severely injures her by throwing her through the air onto the concrete, even after Ma has dropped his gun. Ma furiously engages him in combat and proceeds to beat him to death in front of the crowd. Tony, having kidnapped Wilson's (pregnant) girlfriend, Judy, threatens to kill her, if Wilson, now a sole witness, testifies in court. During the court hearing, Wilson refuses to testify, and the case is dismissed for lack of evidence. Wilson later attempts to rescue Judy, but is captured by Tony and his gang. Once Archer walks free, Ma holds him captive, and calls his brother, Tony, for an exchange of hostages, leading to a confrontation in a Chinese village. Ma singlehandedly takes on the remaining gangsters, engages in a gruelling fight with Tony and strangles him to unconsciousness in order to finally arrest him.