IMDb > A Better Tomorrow (1986)
Ying hung boon sik
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A Better Tomorrow (1986) More at IMDbPro »Ying hung boon sik (original title)

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Overview

User Rating:
7.6/10   13,972 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Hing-Ka Chan (written by) &
Suk-Wah Leung (written by) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for A Better Tomorrow on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
2 August 1986 (Hong Kong) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The movie that began it all......... See more »
Plot:
A reforming ex-gangster tries to reconcile with his estranged policeman brother, but the ties to his former gang are difficult to break. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
4 wins & 12 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(96 articles)
Obsessed (2013) Movie Review
 (From Beyond Hollywood. 13 October 2014, 8:45 AM, PDT)

RZA joins Anna Kendrick, Sam Rockwell in 'Mr. Right'
 (From EW.com - Inside Movies. 6 October 2014, 6:49 PM, PDT)

Wu-Tang Clan's 'A Better Tomorrow' finally gets a release date
 (From Hitfix. 3 October 2014, 3:46 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
.....and the rest is history See more (85 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)
Lung Ti ... Sung Tse-Ho (as Ti Lung)

Yun-Fat Chow ... Mark (as Chow Yun Fat)
Leslie Cheung ... Sung Tse-Kit
Emily Chu ... Jackie
Waise Lee ... Shing (as Lee Chi Hung)
Feng Tien ... Father Sung

John Woo ... Inspector Wu
Yanzi Shi ... Mr. Yiu

Kenneth Tsang ... Ken
Fui-On Shing ... Shing's right hand man
Hsieh Wang ... Mr. Wang (as Hap Wong)
Chi Fai Chan ... 'Little' Wang
Ming Leung ... Uncle Chan
Hing-Yin Kam ... Mr. Mok
Pierre Tremblay ... Interpol Officer

Hark Tsui ... Music Judge (as Tsui Hark)
Shung Fung Lau ... Taiwanese Triad
Wei Ho Tu ... Taiwanese Triad
Yung-sheng Pan ... Taiwanese Triad
Seng-Kwong Chang ... Taiwanese Triad
Foo-wai Lam ... Taiwanese Triad

Stephen Chow ... Taiwanese Triad
Hsin Nan Hung ... Triad Member
Hsi-chun Yang ... Triad Member in Parking Lot
Wai Tong Wong ... Shing's Gangster
Te-wei Chu ... Shing's Gangster
Ming-Wai Chan ... Shing's Gangster
Wing-Hon Cheung ... Shing's Gangster
Wai Cheung Mak ... Brawl Extra
Han-yuan Ma ... Brawl Extra
Gregory Snegoff ... Sung Tse-Ho (voice: English version)
Patrick Leung
Kwok Leung Cheung

Directed by
John Woo 
 
Writing credits
Hing-Ka Chan (written by) (as Chan Hing Kai) &
Suk-Wah Leung (written by) (as Leung Suk Wah) &
John Woo (written by)

Produced by
Hark Tsui .... producer (as Tsui Hark)
John Woo .... producer
 
Original Music by
Joseph Koo 
Ka-Fai Koo 
 
Cinematography by
Wing-hang Wong 
 
Film Editing by
Ma Kam 
David Wu 
 
Production Design by
Chi Leung Lui 
 
Art Direction by
Bennie Lui 
 
Costume Design by
Gam-Jan Yeung 
 
Production Management
Kuo-chung Chou .... production manager (as Tony Chow)
Yu-Kin Ng .... production manager
Ga-Man Wan .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Cylon Or .... action director
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Kim-Kit Wai .... lighting director
 
Editorial Department
Simon Broderick .... colorist
 
Other crew
Wing-Tuen Chow .... script supervisor
Hark Tsui .... presenter (as Tsui Hark)
Wei Tung .... action director
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Ying hung boon sik" - Hong Kong (original title)
"Rapid Fire" - Philippines (English title)
"The Essence of Heroes" - Hong Kong (English title) (literal title)
See more »
Runtime:
95 min
Country:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The movie is actually a remake of a 1967 Cantonese film called Ying xiong ben se (1967) (Story of a Discharged Prisoner). Hark Tsui had been toying with the idea since his days in the TV business, but because of an overwhelming workload, had to pass the directorial reigns to John Woo.See more »
Goofs:
Audio/visual unsynchronized: The cello playing at the "audition" (c.11 minutes) is inaccurately mimed.See more »
Quotes:
Ken:[as United Taxi Co. co-workers who are introduced to Ho] What are you doing? Trying to win favors? Get back to work!See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Replacement Killers (1998)See more »
Soundtrack:
Birdy's FlightSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
19 out of 21 people found the following review useful.
.....and the rest is history, 12 April 2003
Author: bob the moo from United Kingdom

Mark and Ho are gangsters for a major syndicate. Ho's brother Kit is unaware of his brother's lifestyle and himself is an ambitious police officer. However when Ho is betrayed by the bosses he is sent to jail and his father murdered, leaving Kit marked within the force and bitter towards Ho. Mark takes revenge on those who set up Ho but suffers severe damage to his leg as a result. When Ho comes out of prison Mark is reduced to cleaning up for new boss Shing. Ho and Mark resolve to move on, but Shing has other ideas and also plans to deal with Kit to stop him investigating. With the police and mob closing in Ho, Mark and Kit are forced to take a stand.

As part of my build up to see Bullet Proof Monk I have been watching some of Mr Chow's HK action movies again – just to remind me how good an actor he is when he is used well. A Better Tomorrow was Chow's big break through from television to movies and also the film that kick started John Woo's career after a couple of commercial failures. The plot is nicely overwrought and has a strong focus on the male relationship of friends and brothers. Honour plays strong in all scenes and it is actually quite involving despite the focus on gun play and action.

The action is good but dated. This is to be expected after about 20 years but it does still stand up well. The action is pretty over the top but also well choreographed to appear even more exciting than it is. Happily the plot stands up by itself and the film has a lot less action than later Woo films The Killer and Hard Boiled. I really got into the lives and destinies of the men involved and the strength of feeling and, perhaps, debts of honour, between them was palatable.

The strong characters are greatly helped by strong actors in all the leads. Chow is particularly good as he has to play two very different stages of his character and does them both very well (although the supercool part must have come easier to him). Ti Lung is clearly the lead here and does good work even if he is a little too righteous and moral to be a gangster. Leslie Cheung is good after a slow start required by his character. Lee Waise plays a good villain and only the female characters are as weak as they often are in these films.

Overall this film is regarded as a classic and responsible for the birth of the genre and certainly the genesis of many Hollywood action movies of today (how many multiplex goers who marvelled over the lobby shootout in the Matrix have even heard of this film?). It has dated a little bit but the action is still as outrageous as ever and still as exciting, despite a slight feeling of seeing it bigger somewhere else. The film's main strength to me is simply the male characters' relationships within the plot – they get me involved in the film and make the action even more dramatic.

Was the above review useful to you?
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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for A Better Tomorrow (1986)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
The year is 1986: Mark vs Marion 'Cobra' Cobretti HrundiVB
Mark's junk food at the beginning paololita
7.5 really? egonz011-1
Where can I get the soundtrack? jimiisthething
Stunt Man Bloodbath donovanarchmontierth
I wish they did number 4!!! paololita
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