Triad Election (Hak se wui yi wo wai kwai) Reviews
Good performances on everyone and the always sharp direction from To makes this a movie that deserves way more recognition. Also, a third part is a must.
Two years have passed, and a new election is looming. Jimmy Lee (Louis Koo) is the Wo Shing's top earner, giving him the respect and power due to his business savvy and idealism. But deep down, Jimmy just wants to live his life, and move away from the Triad society. But Chinese Intelligence and a few Triad veterans have other plans for Jimmy, believing he is next in line to lead the Wo Shing, despite his protests.
Lok (Simon Yam) returns and seeks an historic second term as Chairman, his cunning and devious mind begins to play politics amongst the groups, and soon engages in war with Jimmy as the fight and blood spills onto the streets of Hong Kong.
This is more bloody, brutal, and it sure does let your imagination run wild as the violence is sure to leave a even the most hardened and desensitized movie goer a little shaken..... the movie does move quicker than the original, but thats due to the fact the the introduction has been told in Election, and Election 2 delves deeper into the emotions and feelings of the central characters and increases the tensions and violence to a new level.
The original cast (minus Tony Leung Ka Fi - tis a shame) return and it feels like old home week - by this point if you really enjoyed Election, it would be like seeing familiar faces and persons again. This movie is essentially Louis Koo's flick, taking the major role, though Simon Yam did take a step back, he played it out well, his screen time mixed with power games and his troubled relationship with his son, while Jimmy tries to balance his business and social life with his newly married wife, while trying to maintain his status and power within the Triad.
Its an all out blood fest, and as they say, only the strong survive. But this one goes far deeper than just criminal politics....
Music score, camera and directing work all top notch, nothing strays from the quality of the first movie.
I guess the only criticism is maybe the movie was a bit too short, it could have been drawn out a bit more, and cold have had more tension and be a bit more gripping like the first. I think the action scenes replaced some of the drama and tension, and that kinda lets it down.
Yes, worth watching!! Winner of Best Film - Hong Kong Film Critics Awards, Official selection in the various prestigious film festivals, and nominations all around.
But other than that, a definite sequel worth watching!!
Triad Election is about the current Triad chairman Lok faces competition from his godsons while at the same time, Jimmy looks to increase his business relations with mainland China. The story is not as complex as the original meaning it's easier to follow and has its own appeal to it. Now my main problem with this movie is that there are too many characters and some of them don't have enough screen time. This is proven by the fact that I was shock that Lok son was actually in this movie and leaves allot to be desire in other story-lines too. What I do liked about the original was it realism and that each character had there own personality, the same is true here. Now while the story of the movie isn't exactly something everyone can get into, it's brilliant take on the Triads.
Unlike most sequels, this movie requires you to watch the original or else you won't know anything about these characters history and at certain scenes you won't know what they're talking about. The cast from the original return and once again deliver another winning performance. If you've seen allot of Johnnie To movie like I have you already what to expect from the cast and have a good idea who they are. Johnnie To is still impressive behind the camera, though not at the same scope as the original, he does great job as always.
Triad Election is a sequel that surpasses the original every way possible. Triad Election is another great drama from director Johnnie To and proves the action genre isn't the only area he can tell a gripping story.
[font=Century Gothic]"Triad Election" builds on the momentum of its predecessor, "Election," and effectively brings off a very strong finish. This time around, the main focus is on power and what it costs, not only to obtain it, but in trying to hold on to it. It is telling that Lok is in danger of his son falling in with a gang, possibly losing him not only figuratively, but literally. And Jimmy learns the very harsh reality that he is not above the fray and that there is always a very high price for success, no matter how legitimate he may appear on the surface. [/font]
After his two years of Chairman Lok (Yam) wants to break tradition and serve a second term. While the elders want to elect Jimmy (Koo) since he has shown he has a good business sense as well as gained respect from many.
Lok the godfather of Jimmy are now in war against each other and will do whatever it takes. Lok wanting to for greed and power, Jimmy doesn't, but is forced to based on a catch-22, even though he wants out to build a future for his family.
To completes his mob epic and looks to have learned from the Godfather by not forcing a trilogy out of it. Set with an amazing musical score and acting, Triad Election draws the saga to a just close with a memorable ending.
Only complaint is for the war being pretty much between the two, I wish they would have focused on what was going on with Lok and his son a little more. I know this movie was more about Jimmy as the end of the first hinted at; just would have made the story little more complete.
The slow burn caper maintains a business-like atmosphere, while its general sense of tranquility is interrupted with sudden bursts of intense violence. Noticeably absent is the trademark two-fisted gun play, sunglasses, and highly stylized action sequences so prevalent in Woo's films. To underplays the spectacle of violence -- he's more interested in the how the escalation reveals the character of the candidates. The majority of "Triad Election" is about the political maneuvering of organized crime, but when the conversations end, make no mistake, the blood flows mightily. "Triad Election" strongly resembles "The Godfather Part II" (1974), but it's resolutely a Chinese story, reaching back to the origins of Hong Kong crime syndicates, and showing how they struggle to keep a foothold in a modernized world. There are great modern crime movies out there -- Michael Mann's "Heat" (1995), Martin Scorsese's "Goodfellas" (1990), and Andrew Lau and Alan Mak's "Infernal Affairs" trilogy. "Triad Election" unquestionably belongs with such illustrious company.