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Issue #134a HOME E-mail: mail@dighkmovies.com BACK ISSUES November 18th, 2002

Tiger on the Beat II
(1990; Cinema City Co.)

A Masterpiece
Highly Recommended
Very Good
Marginal Recommendation
Not Recommended
Definitely Not Recommended

Cantonese: Lo foo chut gang II
Mandarin: Lao hu chu geng II
English: Tiger on the Beat II

Chow Yun-fat passed on appearing in Lau Kar-leung's follow-up, which has no direct connection to the director's 1988 hit, despite sharing many of the same actors (though only James Wong Jim reprises his character). Lam Yick-lin (Danny Lee Sau-yin) is an agitated HK police officer whose miserable life quickly gets worse after he is forced to take in his muscular cousin, Buffalo (Conan Lee Yuen-ba). An A.B.C. (American Born Chinese), Buffalo has been sent to HK by his relatives, who are desperate that he find a wife. Buffalo gets involved with the lovely thief, "Sweet Dream" (Ellen Chan Ar-lun), who has witnessed a murder. She is wanted by gangster Fai (Gordon Lau Kar-fai) and his men because she stole a ring they need to complete a drug deal with some foreigners. Being a gullible but good-natured person, Buffalo decides to help the girl but, when her constant claims of danger yield no tangible threat, he dismisses her as a crackpot. However, the threat is very real, as Buffalo, Lam and policewoman Maria (Maria Cordero) find out when they are attacked outside a nightclub by Fai's hoods. When a plot concocted by Lam ends up with Sweet Dream being kidnapped, Buffalo leads a valiant (and very ill-advised) one man assault on Fai and his cronies.

The action is constant and quite impressively staged, though the plot contrivances (particularly the way in which no one ever believes Sweet Dream is really in danger) do start to pile up after a while. Chow Yun-fat's charismatic presence is also missed and none of the characters or performances here stand out to the same degree. The best advice is to just sit back and enjoy the impeccably choreographed mayhem, which offers a terrific blend of martial arts and police action elements. Conan Lee was badly injured while jumping from a bridge to a lamp post, a stunt that remains in the film (you'll have no trouble understanding why it caused him to spend several months in hospital). The sequence where he fights barefoot on broken glass is also often cited as a highlight but praise should also be directed to Ellen Chan, who takes a lot of punishment in a physically demanding role. Roy Cheung Yiu-yeung, Norman Tsui Siu-keung, Melvin Wong Kam-sun, Mark Houghton, Phillip Ko Fei, Ridley Tsui Bo-wah, Wilson Tong Wai-shing, and James Ha Chim-see also appear.

Cover art courtesy Universe.

Conan Lee (left) and Danny Lee (right). Image courtesy Universe.

Ellen Chan. Image courtesy Universe.
Universe #5163 (Hong Kong label)

Dolby Digital 2.0

Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks (both post-synched)

Optional Subtitles In English, Chinese (Traditional or Simplified), and Indonesian

8 Chapters Illustrated in the Menu

Letterboxed (1.85:1)

Coded for ALL Regions

NTSC Format

90 Minutes (at 25 frames-per-second)

Contains moderate violence and drug use

DVD menu courtesy Universe.

Australia: R (Very Frequent Violence)
British Columbia: 14 YRS (Frequent Violence)
Great Britain: 15
Hong Kong: II
Ontario: AA (Violence)
Singapore: PG [Passed With Cuts]

Aside from occasional instances of DVNR-induced instability, this is a decent rendering, with bright hues; the sound is fine. Extras consist of Star Files on Lau Kar-leung, Danny Lee, Conan Lee, and Ellen Chan, the theatrical trailer, and trailers for three other Danny Lee police thrillers (RED SHIELD, ROAD WARRIORS, and LAW WITH TWO PHASES).

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