(2006/Magnet DVD/Hong Kong)
C+ Sound: C+ Extras: C Film: B-
have looked only at his later films, I have only been so impressed with the
films of Johnnie To and the more hype I have heard, the less I have been impressed
with the final product. Finally with Exiled (2006) I can see some substance,
narrative richness and story/action integration that justify any reputation.
centers on a man who is a target for execution by a Triad, but while a couple
of men have been sent to kill him, two others have been sent to make sure he
stays alive. Thus a war is in progress,
but there is also good acting here for a change and the action sequences do not
seem thrown in or over-choreographed as most Hong Kong action or gangster films
do. That is why in its 109 minutes, the
film makes compelling viewing, even if it is no classic of either genre. Fortunately, it does more effectively than
anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image has some weak detail and even color
issues, but you can still see the good compositions by Director of Photography
Cheung Siu Keung, H.K.S.C. and know he is one of the reasons To
is having the success he is. The Dolby
Digital 5.1 mix is not bad, but a bit soft and no match for the DTS in the
Tartan DVD releases of To’s films.
Extras include separate behind the scenes and making of pieces.
on To, try these links:
- Nicholas Sheffo