Aroview: Master exponent of genre Johnnie To pays homage to spaghetti westerns and the bygone era of John Woo in this energetic, skilfully dispatched action vehicle.
When four hitmen are contracted to kill one of their own, the five ‘exiles’ band together and revolt, turning the tables on their triad employer with bloody panache. Though flavoured in the sights and sounds of Sergio Leone, the film’s character in honour and loyalty is never far removed from the Asian samurai/martial arts staple, and dir. To’s celebration of stylised violence and masculine bonding is well in keeping with the gun operas of Hong Kong cinema’s golden age. More of a comeback than a throwback, it certainly bodes well for future of the ‘bullet ballet’.