7.9/10
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233 user 77 critic

The Killer (1989)

Dip huet seung hung (original title)
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1:26 | Trailer

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A disillusioned assassin accepts one last hit in hopes of using his earnings to restore vision to a singer he accidentally blinded, only to be double-crossed by his boss.

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2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Ah Jong (as Chow Yun Fat)
Danny Lee ...
Sally Yeh ...
Kong Chu ...
Fung Sei (as Chu Kong)
...
Sgt. Tsang Yeh (as Tsang Kong)
Fui-On Shing ...
Wong Hoi (as Shing Fui On)
Wing-Cho Yip ...
Wong Dung-Yu
Fan Wei Yee ...
Paul Yau
Barry Wong ...
Chief Insp. Dou / Tu
Parkman Wong ...
Insp. Chan Bok
Siu-Hung Ng ...
A Killer
Yamson Domingo ...
Bodyguard A
Siu Hung Ngan ...
Bodyguard B
Kwong Leung Wong ...
Wong Tong
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Storyline

A violent Hong Kong action film, this is the story of an assassin, Jeffrey Chow (aka Mickey Mouse) who takes one last job so he can retire and care for his girlfriend Jenny. When his employers betray him, he reluctantly joins forces with Inspector Lee (aka Dumbo), the cop who is pursuing him. Together, the new friends face the final confrontation of the gangsters out to kill them. Written by Jeff Hansen <jmh@umich.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One Vicious Hitman. One Fierce Cop. Ten Thousand Bullets. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

September 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Killer  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (2002) (R-rated) | (extended)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Initially, Golden Princess did not want to make the movie, but Yun-Fat Chow (the studio's top star) insisted that it be made. Chow was also instrumental in bringing in Kong Chu. Chu had not performed in a movie since the 1970s and the studio was hesitant to use him, but he and Chow were good friends after having worked on some television shows together. Chow wanted Chu to play the part of Li, but Chu thought he was too old. Director John Woo suggested that they bring in his friend Danny Lee, who at one time wanted to be a cop and had already made a name for himself playing both police officers and gangsters. Chow had previously worked with Lee on a small film in the early 1980s called Zhi fa zhe (1981) (aka "Killers Two") and Ringo Lam's gangster classic City on Fire (1987), and agreed with Woo that he would be a perfect fit for the part of Li. See more »

Goofs

When Jeff goes to the back room in the first gun battle at the bar, a man takes aim at him from behind the bar counter with a shotgun. Jeff turns his attention to another man with a gun, and then looks back to the man behind the bar, who is seen putting the shotgun into firing position once more. See more »

Quotes

Joe (Cantonese)/Jeffrey (English): I thought those I killed deserved to die. Now I believe everbody has the right to live.
See more »

Connections

References Hero and the Terror (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Once In A Lifetime
Performed by Sally Yeh
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
No Competition
30 June 2003 | by (Memphis, TN) – See all my reviews

First of all, I am disgusted by some of these reviews. Modern action has been overrun by special effects and stuntmen with death wishes (not that I'm complaining), but one must consider the time and the place. It's not the world of the Matrix or the Human-Cyborg War (or whatever it's called) in the Terminator, it's Hong Kong in the 1980's with counterfeiting, hostile Chinese syndicates. It doesn't have to be a big budget feature to be great. Clerks by Kevin Smith had a minute budget, but it made Smith famous.

I digress. Woo creates a sensitive and emotionally complex... assassin. To make him reconsider his job as a professional killing machine Jeffrey, the killer, blinds a lounge singer, Jenny. He swears to himself that he will end his career after one last job. Woo introduces us to the concept, like you see in A Better Tomorrow, that you can never leave a Triad even if you try your hardest. With an hour of attempting, Jeff realizes the horrible truth. Rarely does Woo bring in this feeling of absolute futility in his work. After losing his best friend, Jeff has crossed the Rubicon in his attempts and must end his ties to it by ending his everyone's but his own, excluding Jenny and Inspector Lee. Some people dislike the final shootout, but the doves and the Christian symbology adds a touch that drives religious and heroic bloodshed to the minds of the audience. On a personal note, I love it. The last few seconds depict a man, perhaps Lee, playing a harmonica in front of the church for reasons I don't know.


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