Fox Hunter

An excellent performance from Jade Leung in a film that does not quite match  her effort, but is nevertheless intense, violent and nearly non-stop.
Jade plays a HK cop who goes without permission into the Mainland to take her revenge on a criminal madman who forced her to commit a terrible act in an incredibly harrowing scene. She unfortunately has to take Jordan Chan along with her to locate this person and his performance was irritating almost beyond my endurance. I would prefer a dentist drill to one more of his whines.
But Jade is mesmerizing in her resolve to bring this guy down even with all the odds against her.  Yu Rong Guang is in the cast as a Mainland cop, but for some reason has no action scenes. There is a lot of action in this film - some of it very good. One of Jade's better films.
 

My rating for this film: 8.5


Reviewed by YTSL

To anyone who has seen more than just those Hong Kong action movies which star Chow Yun Fat and Jackie Chan (and maybe even then), it will soon become plainly obvious that the East Asian cinematic world does not lack for female warriors, and that they come in many varieties.  Among others are:  The often cross-dressing swordswomen and God-like creations essayed by the incomparable Brigitte Lin Ching-Hsia in too many films to individually cite here; the kungfu mamas like the two -- played by Josephine Siao and Sibelle Hu -- in "Fong Sai Yuk"; the cool assassins, including those portrayed by Pat(ricia) Ha in "On the Run" and Wu Chien-Lien in "Beyond Hypothermia"; the kind of scarily butch cop that Yeung Pan Pan was in "Princess Madam"; plus the graceful fighters who come in the form of trained dancers like "Supercop" herself (the fact that her "Project S" is being (re)released in the U.S.A. as "Supercop 2" says it all, really!), Michelle Yeoh, along with Moon Lee and Cynthia Khan.

Then there is the star of FOX HUNTER.  It is without any exaggeration that I opine that Jade Leung looks to be an incredibly intense and feisty little bundle of human being.  In this 1995 production, she plays a policewoman named Miss Yeung (is this a tribute to Michelle Yeoh and Cynthia Khan -- the Cantonese versions of whose names this is?  Or is it just that it is similar to Leung?!) who has thrice been unable to pass the test that will allow her to carry and handle firearms.  But do not be deceived.  This is an individual who can look fierce and tough even when she's pursuing someone on a BICYCLE rather than a horse-powered vehicle!  And well capable of doing such as crashing through a wooden fence at will and without any adverse consequences to any part of her!!
Another notable trait is what appears to be her masochism.  In FOX HUNTER, as well as the one other Jade Leung showcase which I've previously viewed ("Black Cat"), she -- and the reader should recognize that Hong Kong movie fights infamously involve "full contact" -- takes (much more than gives out) the kind of pounding that, IMHO, many might not believe they would witness on screen. And I have not even detailed the psychological trauma and stress that her character undergoes in this movie which appears to be a cross between a crime drama and a (woman's) revenge flick..

It is possible that Jade Leung's FOX HUNTER character is supposed to have some weaknesses (or, at least, feelings of uncertainty about her abilities and aims).  There are certainly some lines that she utters in the film -- which looks to be longer on action than it is on conversation -- that seems to indicate that this may be so.  However, the actress generally has such a single-minded look about her that such becomes fairly difficult for the (re)viewer to believe.  It may also be the case that Miss Yeung's strong nature and resolve is especially pronounced when compared to her companion for much of the movie:  A pimp named Chan Hong (portrayed by Jordan Chan) who very audibly wails and whines in scenes when the woman is often noticeably silent as well as stoic.

Perhaps I was suitably amused by the turnaround from Hollywood conventions here of the brave soul belonging to a female and the somewhat panicky -- if not thoroughly cowardly -- character being a man but I didn't find either Jordan Chan's performance or character to be annoying at all.  In fact, I thought that Chan was able to give a loud individual some subtlety and sensitivity (this is particularly so with regards to the depiction of Chan Hong's interactions with his aged parents).  Indeed, I really appreciated that the further the film goes on, the greater is the development and complexity of the character.  In any case, it seems that without his presence (and that of the Mainland Chinese police, whose captain comes in the form of Yu Rong Guang), the movie would have been way too short since the determined female protagonist would have so much more quickly and easily accomplished her mission!

From what I have been given to understand, Jade Leung has not been in too many good productions and many of the makers of examples of the "girls with guns" genre have in recent years essentially relocated -- with not the best of results -- to the Philippines.  On the face of this admirable effort, which itself was surely not a high budget affair (witness the choice of bicycles and buses for (relatively) high speed chases rather than four-wheel drives and other kinds of expensive cars!), these are unfortunate "developments" indeed.

 

My rating for this film:  8.