Nui sat sau
Mandarin: Nu sha shou
English: Lady Killer
Lily Ho Li-li has the title role in this familiar but entertaining Shaw Brothers
crime thriller. Back on the streets after a stay in prison, gangster Shi Yun-pu
(Chan Shen) demands an extortion payment of HK$500,000 from his former boss,
who runs a major smuggling syndicate. Shi has information that could put the
old man behind bars for eternity and the police would love to get him to spill
the beans but Shi remains defiant, even after an attempt is made on his life.
The syndicate decides that they must silence Shi before it is too late and
that the hit must be carried out by someone with no criminal record. Two years
earlier, cafe manager Ge Tianli (Ho) dispatched a thug who had destroyed the
family business and murdered her father. However, she was seen and recognized
by triad lieutenant Xiaojiang (Chang Pei-shan), who has been blackmailing
the girl ever since. He decides that Tianli would be the perfect killer for
this assignment and claims that he will disappear from her life, if she agrees
to murder Shi. Tianli eliminates the hood but, naturally, Xiaojiang can hardly
be trusted to keep his word.
Co-directed by Matsuo Akinori (under his Chinese
pseudonym Mai Chi-ho) and Kuei Chi-hung, this opens with an undercranked,
demolition derby-style car chase that fails to impress. However, the film
improves steadily from that point, with a number of stylish touches (one murder
takes place in a bowling alley and features some creative lensing) and Tianli's
weapon of assassination is unique (her compact has been modified to fire deadly
steel pins). The plot is strictly by-the-numbers, with the change in gender
the only real innovation. Lily Ho also cannot hold a candle to the regular
stable of SB action heroines but brings a focus and intensity to the role
that largely compensates. The wardrobe and music lend the proceedings an irresistible
retro cool and a sequence where Tianli takes on a trio of killers (including
a bald Bolo Yeung and an acrobatic, knife-wielding goon in a frilly dress
shirt) offers some memorable moments. The ending (obviously dictated by local
censorship rules of the time) is a disappointing compromise, however.
Cover art courtesy Intercontinental.
|Intercontinental #101038 (Hong
Dolby Digital 2.0
Post-synced Mandarin Language
Optional Subtitles in English, Traditional Chinese,
Malaysian, and Indonesian
12 Chapters Illustrated in the Menu With Clips
Enhanced for 16:9 Displays
Coded for Region 3 Only
80 Minutes (at 25 frames-per-second)
Contains moderate violence and brief nudity
DVD menu courtesy
BOARD RATINGS AND CONSUMER ADVICE
Singapore: PG [Passed With Cuts]
The image looks clean and detailed, with some minor
jitter noticeable in a couple of sequences. The audio is left in the original
mono and excessive digital noise reduction has renders the track a bit hollowed
out (the action sometimes sounds like it is unfolding underwater); it is adequate
but not ideal. The standard Celestial extras are provided but, once again,
an original theatrical trailer is not among them.
THE LADY PROFESSIONAL is
available at Poker Industries.
problems printing this review with Netscape?
Go to the File option in the Netscape
Task Bar, click the Page Setup from
the sub-menu and make sure that in the Page Options
listings, the Black Text box is clicked.
This should resolve the "no text" printing problem.
here for more information about The Hong Kong Filmography
© John Charles 2000 - 2003. All Rights Reserved.