When three close friends escape from Hong Kong to war-time Saigon to start a criminal's life, they all go through a harrowing experience which totally shatters their lives and their friendship forever.
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In 1967, on the way to the wedding of a friend a young man is accosted by a local gang member. Later, the three friends administer justice, in the process of which the gang member is killed, so they leave Hong Kong to avoid the police and the gang. They run black market supplies to Saigon and get embroiled in the war, being arrested as Viet Cong, then later captured by the Viet Cong, and find that their friendship is tested to the limits as they try to escape. Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
Was originally planned to be a prequel to A Better Tomorrow (1986) but a falling out between John Woo and producer Hark Tsui prevented this from happening. Woo reworked the script into what it is today, and Tsui made his own prequel, A Better Tomorrow III: Love and Death in Saigon (1989). See more »
When the action moves to Vietnam the movie posters ('Dien Bien Phu', etc.) shown are films that came out well after the Vietnam war was over. See more »
Mr Leong. I think think you're mistaken. When we were in Hong Kong we admired Miss Yen. We like listening to her sing. We were all staring at her just now, as we were wondering... wondering why she had changed so much. She's not pretty any more.
She's lost her innocence. She's not happy any more. I wonder who was responsible for that?
You're criticizing me? Not many people would speak to me like that. Young man, you've got balls. Bring me wine!
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Wow, an amazing film. I've been a big John Woo fan for a few years, and this is the last major film of his I've gotten around to seeing. The action scenes are incredible, as to be expected. Not as much action as The Killer or the record-holding Hard Boiled, but still a lot of exciting stuff. This is also a really moving drama. Jackie Cheung in particular was amazing. Of his three acting nominations that year, this was the leading actor nomination he earned at the Hong Kong Film Awards, and I can't believe he didn't win. The POW sequence was so sad, so tragic, so powerful, so moving. Maybe The Deer Hunter was as moving to me. Maybe.
Anyway, this truly is John Woo's Apocalypse Now. An unforgettable drama, not just because it's a memorable, high quality, and entertaining film, but because of the emotional impact the events have on the characters and it'll have on you. 10/10
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