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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Let's start with some facts: this film features one of the best actors
in Hong Kong cinema and TV (Francis Ng Chun-Yu) and probably one of the
worst (no, not Michael Wong!!) - Herman Chan - who, rather
unsurprisingly, didn't act in many films after this one. It also looks
very cheaply-produced - most of the budget probably went on Francis
Telling the story of an incompetent bunch of cops who are brought together to improve the Hong Kong Police's crime-solving figures, most of the film suggests that they have no chance of succeeding.
Each of the cops in the ironically-named "magnificent" team have some sort of issue which affects their work - vomiting at the sight of blood, leaving their guns at home to avoid confrontation... well, you get the picture.
But it's not all bad. Francis Ng overacts as usual, but in that crazy way which only he can pull off - at times, he even seems to be trying to emulate the whiny voice of his Ugly Kwan character from the Young and Dangerous series. However, many of the other performances are as wooden as one would expect in a cheaply-produced film such as this.
There is also much more character development than in many films of this kind, which fills the time in between shootouts. There is plenty of comedy, too. And any film which has multiple choppings, two minutes after the title credits end, can't be all bad! There's a fair bit of action elsewhere, too - possibly the best scene could be the one in the restaurant, where a gangster goes completely over-the-top, not only in killing his treacherous associate at point-blank range, but in the shoot-out which follows.
I'm not going to give away the ending, but it's action-packed yet predictable, and the team finally manage to shake off their "All Talk No Show" reputation.
This film may have been described as a "magnificent waste of time" elsewhere, but I disagree - while it may be only one of my many guilty pleasures, it was also money well spent. One which is worth seeking out, but only if available at a low price.
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