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Movie review: Seoul Raider

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Haven't been blogging for a week due to CNY hols. hehe.. anyways, I've managed to catch Seoul Raider over the CNY hols. Here's my take on the movie.

Tony Leung reprises his role from Tokyo Raiders in this sequel, as the cool, stylish and resourceful investigator Lam. In this highly anticipated sequel, Lam teams up with JJ (played by Shu Qi) a sexy thief with her own agenda. The two must find a pair of plates, used to counterfeit US dollar bills. The reward... USD 30 million. However, Lam was outsmarted by Owen (played by Richie Ren), a former employer of the US Embassy, who has scurried off to Korea with the stolen the plates. Thus, the hunt begin to retrieve the plates before it falls in the hands of the Korean Mafia.

In Seoul Raider, director Jingle Ma used the same formula that made Tokyo Raider a phenomenal success. One in particular was the matrix-style action scenes infused with a splash of Latino music. The action scenes in this movie are up to expectation with Tony Leung battling it out with a horde of baddies and as usual he normally wins. With the help of his gadgets and Jackie Chan-styled humour, the action sequences were entertaining and not too tedious to watch. Furthermore, these sequence were nicely choreographed making it really stylish.

The scenery in the movie was quite ok. For some reason, you don't really see much of Seoul besides Lam's three Korean female sidekick. ;D Nevertheless, the scenes of Seoul was sufficient (but not of those beautiful scenery you see in Korean serials) and interestingly, the Olympic stadium which has now turned into the Mafia's hideout in this movie.

Compared to the first movie, the story for Seoul Raider was less confusing, much more straight forward and predictable. There were enough humour and action to keep everyone entertained throughout the simple plot. However, the are quite a few 'holes' in the plot... but you will hardly notice or care due to the fun factor of the movie.

The characters were nicely played by the respective actors. Tony Leung once again was outstanding playing the stylish and wise-cracking Lam. Shi Qi's mysterious character JJ, however is a bit shallow. The writers did not expand more on her character. It's a shame really as her character could have helped reinforced the plot. IMHO, Richie Ren does make a good villian. His intense acting does help give more depth to the character he is playing. Overall, it looks like the cast had a great time making the movie and the tone is not as serious as the first one.

Overall, a fun movie for the festive season. It's entertaining, funny and stylish. Oh yeah... don't forget the three Korean babes as well. :)

Ratings (Scale of 1 to 5, 5 being the highest)

Cast : 3.5
Sound : 3
Picture : 3
Storyline: 3

OVERALL : 3.8
posted by Ivan, 1:10 pm

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