|François||3.25||Obviously not a masterpiece, but a quite solid action thriller|
For those who loves typical HK action cop movies, Heroic Duo is surely not a revival of their wildest dreams. It's rather a post handover actioner, surely lacking the madness of the old action scenes, but with a real story, decent acting, and not big hole. In the 90's, a HK actioner was 90% of fight scenes, and 10% of totally useless dialogs, storyline, acting, music or directing. The balance of recent production is surely different, and Heroic Duo is a very fine example of this new style.
What disappoints a bit is surely the music, especially at the beginning, as well as the editing. Just as with the introduction of Twins Effect, there is a little lack in this domain which makes the action scenes not as efficient as wished. Hopefully, those lacks become less serious with the time being, even if they are clearly below the other aspects.
First interesting aspect, the story, not really deserving an award, but really well written for an action movie. The characters are not too thin, the story manages to mix suspens and action, and there are even some nice dramatic moments at the end. Wow, for an actioner with Leon Lai and Ekin Cheng, it's quite surprising. Benny Chan doesn't really try to steal the show with some slo-mo or eye-candies, and rather delivers a very classic directing. Another interesting aspect is that the cast is really doing fine, especially when you look at the names. Everybody knows that Ekin Cheng and Leon Lai are no action stars, nor great actors. But they are just credible here, with heroic but human characters. At last, Francis has a lot of fun with a less interesting but amusing character.
Then none of the action scenes are really memorable, but they are all very decent, and show the superiority of wires on digital SFX. The chase on the roofs is really impressive when you see that the actors are really jumping from one building to the other, in one shot, no edit, no cut, no SFX. No need to use "Matrix-like-10M$-CGI-effects" to make an action scene breathtaking. Just as the story, the action is human, realistic and efficient.
So even if this Heroic Duo won't be a revolution in HK cinema, it's clearly a well done entertainer, displaying no big lacks or mistakes, relying on a decent storyline and cast and crew. Give it a try.