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Roy Chen Chih-Lai is a sick rapist/serial killer with a leg fetish, and cuts off his victims' legs as trophies after he's through with them. One day at a bank robbery shootout, he catches police woman Cheng Hsuen on camera, and chooses her to be his next victim. He begins to stalk her and enter her personal life, even waiting for her inside her home. He notices her sister, Kelly, as well (who is also a cop), and her boyfriend, Ken. After he kidnaps and rapes Kelly, Cheng decides to lure the madman by using herself as bait, and bring justice to the situation. Written by
Ival Lai's (Daughter of Darkness 1-2) Peeping Tom (1997) stars Mark Cheng as sick serial killer rapist Roy Chen Chih-Lai who not only rapes and kills his female victims, cuts off their legs as he seems to have some fetishism towards them. He does this by a handsaw and then gets rid of the rest of the body. Jade Leung (the lead actress in Stephen Shin's Black Cat, 1991) plays police detective Cheng Hsuen who gets during one spectacular shootout on the top of the killer's hunting list. She has also a sister Kelly played by Japanese Miho Nomoto and they both are cops. Michael Tse plays Jade's boyfriend and a police chief so they all are trying to capture this nasty killer on the loose.
This film suffers from things which are hard to take seriously and the script is almost laughably bad at times. HOW on earth the police cannot do anything to get the killer as they know his face and the red glasses he wears and the white van he drives, and as he appears everywhere all the time?! This kind of stupidities make me almost angry when seen on film. Also, the motives of the killer are more than ridiculous as he finally tells them to Jade. This is, in fact, pretty bad film, but as a Hong Kong cinema lover, this is little easier to sit through and watch.
The cinematography tries to be ultra stylish but fails. It is not stylish to keep the camera twisted and moving all the time. Clarence Fok's Naked Killer is stylish film because it doesn't sow these camera techniques everywhere but uses them more restrainedly and in right places to create the crazy atmosphere for the film. Peeping Tom looks occasionally nice and has some distant atmosphere or even suspense, but otherwise never achieves what it tries.
There is one very well done gun play sequence in the beginning and that's about the only really fast moment in this film. It is pretty violent and reminded me of such brutal Hong Kong classics as The Big Heat and Requital. The violence is pretty strong throughout the film, but the leg sawing at the beginning is the goriest part there is and it seems to be there just to grab the viewer's attention for the rest of the film. There's plenty of sex and nudity, too, and one amazingly long and detailed scene in which Kelly masturbates in a shower and that scene is definitely more than explicit! The film isn't too strong compared to other CAT 3 films, but it has enough nasty moments and sleaze elements to achieve the CAT 3 rating.
I can't say this is too great film, but it is much more watchable than some Daughter of Darkness 2, which is horrible example of CAT 3 junk. I give Peeping Tom 4/10 and "recommend" it for Asian buffs only.
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