A French chef swears revenge after a violent attack on his daughter's family in Hong Kong, during which her husband and her two children are murdered. To help him find the killers, he hires three local hit-men working for the mafia.
Anthony Chau-Sang Wong
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The film was shown Out of Competition (midnight screening) at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. The film was shown in Grand Theatre Lumiere, the most prestigious theater at Cannes. See more »
When Jet is attacking Long Hair from behind with a machete, he slices his neck but there is no blood on the blade, and Long Hair is not bleeding out from his wound. See more »
From now on, you're welcome in China as tourists. But you can't do business here.
It's our policy.
Mr. Shu is also a gangster. Why can he do business in China?
We made a deal, and he's a patriot.
I can make you a deal. I can be a patriot.
What's your rank in Wo Sing? Not its Chairman?
If I run for Chairman, will you give me what I want?
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It's always nice to fallow the evolution of some characters through the years from films to films. You have the impression to see old friends again after a long separation. But in the triad world of "Election 2", this friends are rather bad and dangerous, and the two years that separate this second opus from the first haven't really improve, nor their friendship, nor the situation. If the first "Election" already was a death fight in order to elect the boss of a important HK triad, this one, setting two years after, is more a complete blood bath, where the most barbarian acts are tolerated. The old triad traditions, that manage to contain the savagery of the characters in the first movie, don't belong to the modern world anymore, for the opening of the Chinese market to the Triads in 1997 completely changes its face.
The characters who manage to survive to the first movie are now about to face a new election, which opposes this time Lok, who wants to be reelected and the young Jimmy, who's quite reluctant to become the new boos, but has to win the election, in order to become a traditional business man in two years. In this second movie, the characters have much more elaborated than in the first one, for they're acting in a tragedy play, with much more powerful actors than them.
Lok isn't the calm and self-control man he once was, he's now obsessed with power and greed. And Jimmy is the classical tragic Corleone character of a gangster movie, who wants to go straight, but only goes deeper and deeper in the evil world of the Triad.
As well as the characters, the political aspect of the movie is also well develops. If the first film mostly deals with ancestral Trial rituals, the second one brings a contemporary point of view on this, and lights the links between HK Triads and Chinese government, which really control them since 1997.
This movie is also more violent than the first, guns appear (whereas they were inexistent in "Election 1"), and a magisterially gore torture scene (with dog and human food...) greatly increase the emotional impact of the movie and underlines the abominations man is able to do in order to archive his need of power.
All this elements makes "Election 2" a entertaining and interesting movie, and elects Jhonny To as one of the most interesting filmmaker of Hong-Kong. But his very classical direction (the movie always looks like a classical 90's HK polar), and storyline (the story of Jimmy is very similar to the Michael Corleone one, with some Melvillle elements, and a soundtrack very similar to the one you can find in Corean Thrillers) makes him a lot less original, than directors like Wong Kar-Wai or Hark Tsui, who is always the godfather of HK cinema.
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