When a film is not one of the best I have ever seen, excels in its presentation, when it has potential and does not take advantage of that high aspect, or when it is just plain good, I look for a scapegoat someone to blame for not making this movie better then it could have been. So far this year I have seen "Varsity Blues" take a slope to mediocre, "8MM" get bashed from greatness by its sloppy director, and "Cruel Intentions" loose all hopes of being great with its preposterous ending. Well in "The Corruptor" I put most of the blame on the writer and a minor proportion goes to Mark Wahlberg for acting like he is oblivious to how bad a situation is. Again this movie could have been a "Face/Off" but these aspects of silly predicaments and some pointless dialogue prevented this from actually being above good. For this is not "The Replacement Killers" which was insipid and hollow, even though the action scenes were plenty. This is a film with a ambiguous plot and complex characters, nothing is what it seems. Sure one can contradict by saying weve seen this buddy cop movie before, but this is Chinatown and sure the relationship between new cop partners has not changed, there is a twist in this one. What I loved about it is how it never let you sleep, the action was fierce, fast and booming, it flashed from one scene to the next in a spectacular zoom, a thrill a minute high octane action thriller, then it got deep into business of the evil and corruption that goes on in Chinatown in New York. Chow Yun - Fat was actually given the chance to act here, he was talking jumping and not acting like a god damn robot, as he did in "The Replacement Killers", the chemistry between Wahlberg and Yun - fat worked as well, unlike it did with Mira Sorvino in his debut film. What was also interesting was the subplots between Whalberg and his father Sean Wallace (Brian Cox), a ex crooked cop who is in a large debt, and Chow Yun - Fats relationship with a hooker who he actually feels for named May. For a high testosterone film it is shrewd and witty, very entertaining and fun, the film actually dwells at the problem of corruption before it does the solution, it doesnt bewilder you into a point where you have no idea what is going on, although Chows speaking scenes are just a tad hard to understand, but he did improve since last year.
Nick Chen (Chow Yun - Fat) is working the 5-0 in the New York police force, he is trying to bust up all the Asian gang units, one in particular are called The Faukeneise, they blow up buildings, kill tourists and basically cause large quantities of trouble, which cause his force loads of work, well you do the math. Now Chen is not exactly the epidomy of integrity and honesty, there are times when he turns his head the other way, a nice and kind corrupt cop. The first action scene of the film is reminiscent to "The Killer" which has Chow making all his gun tricks and prevailing the battle, it is still great to watch him do that after all his films, the spark is still there. Daniel Wallace (Mark Wahlberg) is a white cop who is brought into Chens unit, the explosion which killed a few tourists upset the chief and the state, so they say a white cop in the Asian unit will make them happy , hence Danny. The basic plot is to bring down these Faukenese, there are like missions which these boys must complete in order to reach the big chief of the gang, these Faukenese bring in slaves from China, these slaves need to work up their debts as hookers, once they get tired of that and refuse to go on their body is found in a dumpster. Chen and Danny later form a bond and a deep trust and relationship with each other, of course they have their disputes at first but they certainly are later on setteled, it is good chemistry that keeps this movie alive, well that and all the impressive action sequences. There is one in particular that will blow you away, a fifteen minute car chase through Chinatown filled with innocent casualties and several gun shots, it is truly one of the best action scenes ever filmed. I do not want to get deep into the plot, for I am one of those critics who leave in up to the reader to go see the film, over all this one is a piece of very enjoyable entertainment, but not mindless, the plot gets a little complex but it is still understandable. If you are a fan of action movies with brains then this flick is for you, I am not praising it because a few of the situations were a little silly and unbelievable. I am sure though you guys will enjoy it.
On a side note, "Cruel Intentions" was a good film, very good as a matter of fact, it is just that the ending to me was disappointing, just didnt want to discourage you guys.
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