BULLET IN THE HEAD
DIP HUET GAI TAU
1990, 120 min, Hong Kong, Dir: John Woo

Hailed by many as Woo’s finest and most personal film, BULLET is a thrillingly beautiful and searingly cathartic drama of three friends (Tony Leung, Jacky Cheung and Waise Lee) in 1967 Hong Kong, who are forced to flee after becoming unintentionally embroiled in a gang vendetta. Woo unflinchingly charts their harrowing escape into the fire of the Vietnam inferno, as the trio become targets for black marketeers as well as Viet Cong, and run a gauntlet that will tear apart their friendship in the process.


ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA
WONG FEI HUNG
1991, Golden Harvest, 134 min, Hong Kong, Dir: Tsui Hark

In Tsui Hark’s epic re-imagining of a classical Chinese folk hero, Jet li portrays Wong Fei-hung, a 19th century herbal medicine doctor who also moonlights as the leader of his local militia, training them in traditional martial arts. When the militia protects their village from a brutal gang, Wong gets wrongly blamed for causing the fight. Politics, revolution, and romance all combine across elaborately choreographed fights in a restaurant, at the opera-house, and on a boat to kick off one of the most successful martial arts franchises of all time.


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