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Righting Wrongs



Yuen Biao prepares to right some wrongs

AKA: Above the Law  
Chinese: 執法先鋒  
Year: 1986
Director: Corey Yuen Kwai
Action: Corey Yuen Kwai, Mang Hoi, Yuen Biao, Hsu Hsia, Ju Wai-Kwong
Cast: Yuen Biao, Cynthia Rothrock, Melvin Wong Kam-Sum, Corey Yuen Kwai, Roy Chiao, Wu Ma, Karen Shephard, Peter Cunningham, Tai Bo, James Tien Chun, Chung Fat, Peter Lai Bei-Tak, Lau Siu-Ming, Fan Siu-Wong
The Skinny: Yuen Biao is at his best in this dark, violent and remarkable action drama directed by Corey Yuen.
 
Review
by Kozo:

Exceptional - even brilliant - action make this eighties HK actioner a minor masterpiece. Yuen Biao stars as a righteous barrister who finds his case thrown out of court when his witness (and family, INCLUDING THE KIDS) gets offed in an obvious attempt to shut them up. Frustrated, he takes the law into his own hands and goes after the perpetrators.

Would it were that easy to play Punisher; he finds himself the quarry of a gweilo policewoman (Cynthia Rothrock) and her slob partner (Corey Yuen). However, it turns out that Yuenís not the only guy that disregards the law - the police sergeant (Melvin Wong) does too, and heís a nasty piece of work. By the time Cynthia catches on to who the real bad guy is, it may be too late, as the blood of innocents and all pretense of actual justice are thrown completely out the window.

The plot is paper thin, serving as nothing more than a thematic framework in which Corey Yuen weaves a supremely dark story punctuated by uncompromisingly sudden violence. This is the sort of film thatís so mired in its pessimism that it has no compunctions about killing off important characters. Sure, the dialogue and symbolism is cheesy; in one moment of thematic overkill, a random passerby steps on a law book that has already had holes shot through it. However, that's only a small caveat in an otherwise exhilarating and remarkable genre picture. (Kozo 1998)

 
Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Joy Sales
16x9 Anamorphic Widescreen
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Dolby Digital 5.1 / DTS 5.1
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles
*Also Available on Blu-ray Disc
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image courtesy of Universe Laser & Video Co., Ltd.

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