7.5/10
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A Better Tomorrow (1986)

Ying hung boon sik (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Crime, Drama | 2 August 1986 (Hong Kong)
A reforming ex-gangster tries to reconcile with his estranged policeman brother, but the ties to his former gang are difficult to break.

Director:

John Woo

Writers:

Hing-Ka Chan (as Chan Hing Kai), Suk-Wah Leung (as Leung Suk Wah) | 1 more credit »
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6 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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 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 Pierre Tremblay ... Interpol Officer
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Storyline

This story is the tale of two brothers: one a successful counterfeiter and the younger a fledgling graduate of the HK police academy. The plot revolves around the split when the younger brother learns the other is a criminal and the efforts of the criminal brother to reform. Along the way are plenty of heists, double-crosses, and shoot outs. Written by Victor R. Volkman <sysop@hal9k.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The movie that began it all......... See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Hong Kong

Language:

Cantonese | Mandarin | English

Release Date:

2 August 1986 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

A Better Tomorrow See more »

Filming Locations:

Hong Kong, China See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,999,517
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono | Dolby (5.1 Surround Sound)| DTS (DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1) (Blu-ray release)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film also contains "Birdy's Theme" (from the film Birdy (1984)) by Peter Gabriel incorporated into the soundtrack. See more »

Goofs

The cello playing at the "audition" (c.11 minutes) is inaccurately mimed. See more »

Quotes

Jackie: It's all your fault! You embarrassed me before I went on stage! You can't help in any way!
Tse-Kit Sung: You don't even have confidence in yourself. How can I help? They didn't say you failed. You don't know if it's hopeless.
[takes Jackie's violin case]
Jackie: Give that back to me!
[Jackie grabs the case and smashes it into a music judge's car window]
Jackie: Now, it's really hopeless!
See more »

Alternate Versions

2 DVD versions released, one with original music and the other with substantial changes to music soundtrack. See more »


Soundtracks

Love of the Past Years
Composed by Joseph Koo
Lyrics by James Wong
Performed by Leslie Cheung
See more »

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User Reviews

Mr Chow has achieved what no one else could: He looked cool in the 80's
19 August 2002 | by the_saint_107See all my reviews

When this film was made in the 1980's Hong Kong cinema was dominated by wushu films and bizarre swordplay movies involving people flying around and other acid flashback inducing scenarios. John Woo was a young director who had done a string of martial arts films, comedies, and musicals. In 1981 he split from Golden harvest and joined Cinema city, after a couple of comedies, He directed the modern day action film "Sunset Warrior" and it was held on the shelf and not released. After the failure of "Sunset Warrior" he was sent to Taiwan and directed another two comedies. Returning to Hong Kong, Woo had always wanted to make a modern day gangster film. Teaming up with friend and producer Tsui Hark, they made a film that would inspire countless films for years to come. Casting Chow Yun Fat who was mainly a television actor as one lead, an old school Kung Fu actor in another and a singer in the third lead role, it was a risky venture which paid off. The script is great featuring lines such as "Do you believe in God?" "sure i'm one, you are, a god is someone who controls their own destiny". There is strong characterisation of the characters, aided on by perfect performances from the actors, The action choreography was excellent and inspired virtually every film made involving guns ever since. It makes you realise that the only thing "the matrix" didn't take from this film and it's sequels is the plot. This is one of my favourite films of all time, and if everyone in the world saw this, I guarantee that the sales of matchsticks and toothpicks would soar.


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