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      City Under Siege

      2010 1h 46m Sci-Fi Mystery & Thriller Action List
      Reviews 17% Audience Score 250+ Ratings A circus clown is finally able to master the lethal Flying Dagger technique after he is turned into a mutant with super-human strength. Read More Read Less

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      Audience Member 2011 frist time i si and now 1/13/2020 Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/09/23 Full Review Audience Member Awesome fight scenes, teary moments, a hot guy. Only real problem is the movie is too long. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 01/16/23 Full Review Audience Member I noticed 'Funimation' in the early credits, and sure enough, some of the voices used for dubbing are veterans from anime titles, North American dubbed versions. One line summary: Fairly good as action-comedy; Funimation did not do well on the dub. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ The film opens in a Japanese prison camp in Maylaysia, 1945. The Japanese experiment with chemistry to artificially produce a super soldier class so as to turn the tide in World War II. This fails and the bad stuff seems to be lost. In the present, Sunny is a buffoon in a traveling circus troupe, the Thundering Daggers. He fails at knife throwing, and does better as a clown. One night he goes with fellow troupe members to check whether a small group has found some gold. Sunny's fellow circus members knock out the gold hunters. Sunny falls down in the middle of the fight. When he gets his bearings, they recruit him for doing all the dangerous steps first. The find a bit of gold, but also release the chemicals that the Japanese experimented with. The thieves hop a boat for Hong Kong. Sunny falls into a fishing boat; he gets very hungry, eats some of the catch, and grows quite fat. The crew discover him and throw him overboard while out at sea near Hong Kong. In return for changing her tire, Sunny gets a ride home with Angel, who is a star reporter on CSS News on television. The mutated thieves stage a violent, showy, and very public attack. Two expert researchers (Suen Ho and Tai) are brought in by the police. Angel loses her job because her producer found a younger woman to sleep with. Sunny regains his usual shape the next morning. His Uncle Tak thinks Sunny is trouble. The Malaysian police blame the thieves in the troupe; Tak gets most of his possessions appropriated in recompense. Sunny goes to straighten all this out with the police. By chance he meets Angel outside the police station where a robber is holding a policewoman hostage. Sunny throws a stick through glass, then through the robber's hand. Sunny is lionized, and Angel helps him get away from the crowds. The mutated thieves see Sunny on TV, and are really angry, since Sunny recovered his normal shape, whereas they stay messed up. In fact, they are moving to a second stage. The attack soon enough, and Sunny is both quite skilled at fighting them, but sometimes also quite bad since he is unfamiliar with his mutant powers. The two researchers intervene. They also have usual abilities, but perhaps not enough to match the thieves. Sunny and the researchers eventually prevail. Sunny becomes the hero, and then a media star with Angel's help. The 'researchers' are just using Sunny as bait. More confrontations are to come, especially since the lead mutant wants to drink Sunny's blood to return to normal. In a major confrontation, Tai is killed. Sunny convinces Suen Ho to train him. Meanwhile, the mutants continue to evolve and unleash a reign of terror across the defenseless city. Angel has no idea whether Sunny is alive or dead. Who will win the final confrontation? Will Sunny find himself before the city is burned down? Will Sunny and Angel become more than business partners? -------Scores------- Cinematography: 8/10 Almost always good-looking and well-shot. Sound: 5/10 The incidental music was reasonable for increasing tension. Unfortunately, in the dubbed version I watched, the translation was terrible. The subtitles did not match the spoken dubs most of the time. The sound of the voice was disinformation. Acting: 6/10 I liked the performances of the two principals, Aaron Kwok and Qi Shu in this film. However, compared to his performance in the glorious Floating City, Kwok was using less than 10% of his craft. It was like watching a master chef conducting a wienie roast. I did not believe the acting of much of the supporting cast. Hearing the dubs by anime voice actors made this much worse. Screenplay: 5/10 As an action comedy, this should have been quite good. However, the war between the subtitles and the dubbed text was a major detriment. The director's intentions were much harder to see when the voice said one thing while the subtitle said something contrary or even contradictory. When my sons were younger, I watched many hours of anime with them; this was usually the North American version of the anime. I recognize some of the anime voice actors used in this live action film. This added another layer of dissonance. SFX: 6/10 Mixed bag here. Some FX are well done and fit well with the fight choreography. Others look just plain stupid. There is also the recurrent matter of explosions that seem to have no cause at all. I found those the most annoying. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 01/13/23 Full Review Audience Member Mutants and flying daggers collide in this action dramedy. It's ridiculous and too long, but it's quite entertaining. Impressive cast and commitment to concept. "Seeing Wu Jing and Zhang Jingchu athletically take on mutants while stabbing them here and there with needles is fun stuff" A silly popcorn movie made for 3-D. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/21/23 Full Review Audience Member Jackie Chan style X-men like tale. Should have been better... Rated 2 out of 5 stars 01/23/23 Full Review Audience Member <i>"People may get lost sometimes, and even lose the ego."</i><p> I'm a fan of Benny Chan. He's made some really enjoybale action films in the past, such as <i>New Police Story</i> and <i>Invisible Target</i>. His latest offering, <i>City Under Siege</i>, sees him taking on the sci-fi genre. All I can say is <i>"I'm disapointed."</i> This is a nightmare of a movie. <u>SUMMARY:</u><p> Sunny (Aaron Kwok) is a professional clown who dreams of being a star dagger thrower and generally acts like a complete idiot. Sunny is an optimistic, childish and totally daft dope who's routinely ridiculed by the circus' other performers, an evil bunch led by Cheung (Collin Chou). One night, Sunny and Cheung's band of evil circus performers happen across a buried lab in Malaysia (which was used by the Japanese in World War II for experimenting with a strange gas to turn people into super strong mutants with a predilection for violence) and bust it open thinking that it contains gold. They manage to find capsules that do contain gold, but soon consume some of the gas, and go through mutation soon after. All the mutants end up back in Hong Kong, with Cheung's gang pillaging and ravaging, while Sunny becomes a star after saving someone from a criminal. He attracts the eye of TV Reporter Angel (Shu Qi). <u>REVIEW:</u><p> Benny Chan is an awful writer. I still don't know why he continues to write the scripts for his films. He is an appalling screenwriter. Like many action films nowadays, <i>City Under Siege</i> has the dumbest storyline ever. All this dribble about mutants and Japanese soldiers is terrible. There's some silly use of "flying daggers", which isn't well suited to this kind of genre. In terms of character, the film goes for the amusing kind. The hero of the film, Sunny, is a numb skull. He's dumb and weak. To the audience, he's supposed to be the underdog that we love. Well, I didn't love him. I found him annoying. The villain here, Cheung, is your basic baddie. He's evil, he's scary looking, and he's a criminal. It's a shame that he had to have a little bit of humour, with a few lines that aren't funny at all. <i>City Under Siege</i> does follow a rather typical plot line. It's the basic kung-fu movie type of storyline - hero gets strong, hero fights with bad guy, bad guy wins, hero trains with a badass, hero defeats bad guy with new found power. I had a problem with this due to the fact that the film isn't a kung fu movie. It doesn't have the right to fit into the catergory. It's way too silly! Aaron Kwok's performance is way too over-the-top, and it seems that he was directed to do that by Chan. Gosh, he makes the character of Sunny annoying. He's not very charming at all. Shu Qi does a solid job as Sunny's love interest, though I found her very unlikeable. The best thing about <i>City Under Siege</i> is Wu Jing and Zhang Jingchu. They play a couple who capture mutants. The two of them are asked to protect Sunny and Angel from the mutants that are after him. The great thing is that they have chemistry. Wu and Zhang are a great couple, working really well together. Their performances were definitely the best of the film. Collin Chou has heaps of fun as the villain, though it is a shame that he was dubbed - I'm pretty sure he can speak Cantonese. It's a shame that there was so little action in this, as Chan would always direct films with a whole heap of action. Unlike his other films, Chan uses way too much CGI in this. There's so many special effects on-screen that it soon begins to hurt your eyeballs. Daggers being thrown, trucks flying through midair, and glass exploding - all this is created by the effects. It doesn't work, and Chan has been famous for always doing action with a realistic edge. Here, it's missing. The action itself is average. Sure, it's shot well, but it's boring. Wu Jing is still a lot of fun to watch as he kicks ass. The pacing is a bit off, as well is the running time of the film. It's way too long for a film of its type. I thought this was going to be good. Chan is a good director, and the look of the poster was brilliant. I guess I was judging a book by its cover. <i>City Under Siege</i> is terrible - that's all it is. Wu Jing and Zhang Jingchu may give it some points, but overall, it's not a film I can recommend. Even to a Benny Chan fan. I hope he never touches the Sci-Fi genre again. <div style="width:500px;"><a href="http://www.flixster.com/photos/city-under-siege-13810131"><img src="http://content9.flixster.com/photo/13/81/01/13810131_ori.jpg" border="0"/></a><div style="text-align:center;font-size:10px;"> Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Read all reviews
      City Under Siege

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis A circus clown is finally able to master the lethal Flying Dagger technique after he is turned into a mutant with super-human strength.
      Director
      Benny Chan Chi-Shun
      Producer
      Benny Chan Chi-Shun
      Screenwriter
      Benny Chan Chi-Shun, Chi-man Ling
      Production Co
      Universe Entertainment, Beijing Enlight Pictures
      Genre
      Sci-Fi, Mystery & Thriller, Action
      Original Language
      Chinese
      Release Date (DVD)
      Jul 1, 2012
      Runtime
      1h 46m