Wong Jing's Mercenaries from Hong Kong (1982) was a late Shaw Brother's attempt to break into the modern action genre that was taking hold in the Hong Kong Cinema in the early 80's. Ti Lung plays a Vietnam vet who's now an 'honourable' mercenary-for-hire taking on an assignment tracking down an assassin who's fled to Cambodia after murdering an industrialist from Hong Kong. He recruits a team for the task which consists of who's who of the Shaw Brother's action stars (Lo Lieh, Johnny Wang Lung Wei, Wong Yue, Chan Wei Man and comedy relief Nat Chan). However once they arrived for the mission nothing is what it seems with the standard plot-twists and turns as we find out who's the traitor among the group...
It's interesting to see Shaw Brother's attempt to move into contemporary action genre from the Kung Fu/ Wuxia staple and this is not a bad effort even if the plot is lifted from the 'Wild Geese' At least in the hands of Ti Lung we see him and his group busting out a few nice Kung Fu moves in a contemporary setting which I can't imagine Richard Burton or Roger Moore doing. Low-brow humor is kept to a minimum for a Wong Jing film other than scenes with Nat Chan and this helps the general flow of the film. The gun play and action is competently done although not at the level of John Woo's films a few years later. All in all an enjoyable early Wong Jing popcorn action movie.
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