Story of the Gun
AKA: The Story of the Gun, Story of a Gun, Lethal Girls 2
Director: Kirk Wong
Stars: Gordon Liu, Yukari Oshima, Mark Cheng, Sophie Crawford
While watching this movie, I was reminded a bit of the recent US film Traffic. Both movies try to go beyond the usual crime drama fare by delving deeper into the characters' lives and motivations. Like Traffic, Story of the Gun becomes too ambitious for its own good, turns into boring/confusing mush and has an ending that leaves little or no resolution, even by HK standards. The plot is split into two stories; the first has Gordon Liu (in a really bad-looking mullet wig -- at least I hope it's a wig, or else I'd sue my barber if I was him) as a HK cop going to the Mainland to investigate a major gunrunning case. The second has Yukari Oshima and Mark Cheng as a pair of Mainland gunrunners who are willing to give up their successful "business" for a chance to move to Hong Kong. As per the usual plot "twists" in these movies, the two stories intertwine during a major arms deal.
There's some sparks of good things in this movie. It was interesting seeing Yukari play a role that is really the polar opposite of most of her other HK roles; she even makes her associates breakfast and has a couple of short love scenes with Cheng. But towards the end of the movie, I felt myself wanting to see the wonderful psycho villain she can be in films like Angel. Most of the other actors give good performances as well, but many of the minor characters (such as a Mainland cop Liu becomes friends with) are woefully underwritten. Worse yet, many of them come and go at the drop of a hat, which makes the scenes they do appear in seem unnecessary.
The action scenes are okay. Kirk Wong isn't normally known for Woo-style pyrotechnics or Yuen Woo-Ping wire-fu, so don't expect any of that here. The highlights action-wise are a couple of decent gunfights and a nice -- but too short -- fight between Yukari and gweilo Sophie Crawford (who plays an Interpol agent assisting Liu, but still goes around wearing workout clothes for some reason). Supposedly, Crawford badly injured her ankle and so the final confrontation between her and Yukari had to be pared down a lot. It's a shame. This movie could have really used a big finish at the end. As such, I can really only marginally recommend it for die-hard Yukari fans only.
Back to Movie Review index