The rawness of violence breeds with the beauty of human movement and the result gets showcased in these 5 Chow Yun-Fat movies that redefine action. Chow's quickness, strength and situational awareness is riveting. Double wax the floors tomorrow before you try out the stunts you're about to see.
Like conjoined twins, Woo and Chow take to the screen again in "Hard Boiled." The gunplay in the teahouse action sequence stands up through time as a perfect example of brutal violence dancing with graceful movement. Restaurant items become weapons of convenience as this movie reinterprets action with voraciousness. The fight in the hospital actually has guns being reloaded, which is as rare as a unicorn in Woo films.
"Prison on Fire"
What action lacks in style is made up for in brute, ragged, visual power as prisoners and guards get conflict foisted upon them. With such a large prison population, blood flows and violence erupts over the screen. Tension builds with each corrupt action by the guard known as The Assassin. A redefinition of action occurs in "Prison on Fire" as the prisoners learn how to rise up against their keepers through the peaceful action of non-violence.
"Curse of the Golden Flower"
The bullets get put away for now and the swords come out in "Curse of the Golden Flower." With transcendent fighting sequences, this Chow Yun-Fat movie manages to make swordplay that is stylized and flourished still feel deadly. The combat observes the rule of the conservation of momentum as simple, quick movements convey the skill behind the warrior, leaving you to realize how much skill lies behind each small action. This is a film that finds beauty in the environment, the costumes and the willpower behind the action. The seated sequence in the fight between father and son is breathtaking throughout its entirety.
The slight sound of water dropping onto a switchblade scores one of the best action sequences in "Full Contact" as Chow Yun-Fat rescues his friend from a car window predicament. With a bit of gruesome wrist cutting during the rescue, this is one of the battles that redefine action as not just within punches and kicks but the way the environment can add tension and periods of calm to the battle. "Full Contact" is a great Chow Yun-Fat movie that features more punching than gunning and suffers nothing for the shift in balance.