Stranger Things, Ready Player One and J.J. All of Abrams’ work is something to go through, and that also applies outside of Hollywood these days. At a time when the decline of theatrical admissions, particularly in Hong Kong, forces producers to be creative, it is not surprising that someone (in this case the producer-actor Eric Tsang and the veteran action choreographer and acrobat Chin Ka) -lok) dust off one of the most popular SAR franchises exploit a vein of deep nostalgia. Anyone who discovers the new Hong Kong wave of the late 80’s and 90’s will recognize the names on the title, and will recognize Golden Job for what it is: shameless nostalgic shamelessness.
In the mid-1990s, the divisive and popular series of sexy trios Young & Dangerous produced six films in four years (this was at the end of the frenetic production environment in Hong Kong), not including a truck laden with spin-offs , and launched several races despite accusations that movies glorified gangsters, crime and street violence. Regardless of their (suspicious) or quality (median) motifs, the film that brings together the main cast of Y & D for Golden Job more dependent on the chase, pyrotechnic and loaded with shots could be a guilty pleasure for a certain group demographic. And holding on to their hats when Tsang, Chin and songwriter Chan Kwong-wing are going to kill when they resurrect Cantopop they hit “Yau Ching Seuih Yuht” (“Years of Friendship”) from the previous films. Success in the home will depend entirely on how anxious Hongkongers feel, which means that they could do respectable business; familiarity with ownership and fondness for the cast, both regionally and abroad, could also lead to modest success in those places.
In a new unrelated adventure that is almost indecipherable, Lion (Ekin Cheng, still possessing her magnificent braids), grumpy Crater (Jordan Chan, Trivisa), tech geek Mouse (Jerry Lamb) and ace wheelman Calm (director) Chin) make up a brotherhood of ex-special forces types (maybe?) that gets tired of being hired for questionable clients (at the beginning of the film a grim pharmaceutical monster) and decide to do something of Robin Hood on their own, guided by the figure paternal Papa (Tsang). Also part of the gang is the insecure Bill, and because he is played by Michael Tse, Pedro Pascal himself from Hong Kong, we know that he will break badly at some point to become the brothers’ main nemesis.
His last concert is a job stealing a truck full of life-saving drugs to give to the girlfriend of Lion’s Medecins Sans Frontieres in Africa (seriously). The work naturally goes awry when the gang discovers that the truck is full of gold bars belonging to The Agency (really, that’s their name) and Bill betrays them. The shooting begins, everyone runs through the streets of Budapest and Lion ends up in a Hungarian prison. He is received by Calm years later when he is released, and the search for revenge against Bill, now a crime lord in Montenegro (!), Begins.
Golden Job is outlandish AF, with more than a few involuntarily hilarious moments, which does not mean it lacks entertainment value. Nostalgia is comforting because we know what to expect, and everyone reaches their expected brands here. Cheng is great and handsome; Lamb is charming geek (although the crazy hacker skillz is a modern addition); Tse is appropriately nervous and bitter; and Chan, always the best actor in the group, manages to infuse a certain degree of humanity into Crater. It’s the crazy mix of genres and the Hollywood glitter that separates the film from its roots in Y & D. Golden Job begins with what appears to be an Ocean’s Eleven-ish heist, moves forward with a large dose of fast action Fast and Furious , and ends with the elitist military shoot-em-up of almost any movie starring The Rock. He also has a pinch of Mamma Mia! If you include the sunny European work holidays, the cast can enjoy them.
The technical specifications are good, and Chin does his typically solid work with fight choreography (much of the cast) and car stunts, and some familiar faces in cameos (original series and director of Hell Affairs Andrew Lau) and small parts (veteran Japanese the heavy Yasuaki Kurata as a gentle neighbor who manipulates the sack and causes looting) is distracted from the strangest nonsense of the movie (therefore, both slithering over the hoods of the cars, an unfortunate disguise like a Hasid) and the heavy procedures of testosterone. Dr. Chow from Charmaine Sheh and Lulu from Zhang Yamei (Papa’s daughter) are indoor plants that go through female characters.
Former mercenaries gather to plan an epic robbery: increase a truckload of drugs held by a foreign intelligence agency. But when they discover that the truck is full of stolen gold, they realize that they.have been betrayed by one of their own.
Initial release: September 28, 2018 (USA)
Director: Chin Ka-lok
Music composed by: wing of Chan Kwong