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Breaking News (Dai si gein) (2004)

  Directed by: Johnny To
Written by: Chan Hing-Kai, Tin-Shing Yip
Starring: Kelly Chen, Nick Cheung, Richie Ren
Links: Breaking News on the IMDb, Official site
Genre: Drama

This movie gets: 8.00 (1 rating) Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

"Cops and Robbers via the media" - a review by timchuma

A bust gone wrong by hot head Inspector Cheung leads to a public-relations disaster for the Hong Kong police. Head of Police PR, Rebecca Fong is determined to improve the police's image and leads a police operation against the criminals where they also hope to control the media coverage of the operation.

Cheung doesn't have much respect for this and is running his own operation with his own group of men. When they finally come across the gang in an apartment complex, they are fired upon and chase them into the building without waiting for backup.

Ms Fong cracks it that Cheung is not following procedure, but she goes ahead with the operation anyway and they arrive in numbers. What is different about it is that every officer is wearing a pinhole camera and the footage is edited and released to the media to show their side of the story.

After an incursion by the PTU leads two of the gang members to seek refuge in an apartment, the police show their successful raid. The gang members have other ideas and manage to take photos with their phone camera of what really happened. They leak them to the media by getting the kid of the tenant to upload them to a website (they don't mention the name.)

This game of media cat and mouse between the police and gang members continues while Cheung and his officers are tracking them down the old-fashioned way. Much gunplay ensues with Cheung and Ms Fong chasing off after the gang on foot.

I can see why this movie was included for official selection at Cannes. The addition of the police stage-managing their operation takes a normal police-guns-crime story that had been done to death in the 90s and adds an original twist to it in the age of reality TV 24/7.

The actors playing the main characters perform very well, but I liked the minor role of Yip (the owner of the apartment where the gang hides) and his two kids. The young boy is funny when he goes on about not wanting to help criminals. Also, when a man with a gun tells you not to do you homework, I would think it was a good excuse.

timchuma gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Fri 27 Aug 2004

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