September 12, 2003
Following in the footsteps of the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon comes this latest wirework offering from China. Veteran director Corey Yuen is in charge of this film starring Kzhao Wei, Karen Mok, and Shu Qi. Director Yuen also took care of the martial-arts choreography for the film. His choreography work has also appeared in Lethal Weapon 4, Kiss of the Dragon, and Romeo Must Die. There was a Name the Movie contest and the winner was Virtual Twilight. However, it appears that the studio has decided to make the title So Close.
The story is about two sisters (Shu and Zhao) who take on an unresolved family vendetta. After they kill a wealthy Shanghai computer magnate, they are pursued by a beautiful and ambitious young undercover Hong Kong detective (Mok). According to the official plot synopsis, "A battle of wits and force ensues in this action-packed, hi-octane (sic) tale of technological wizardry."
Co-star Zhao Wei was discovered at Beijing's prestigious Film Academy, just like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon star Zhang Ziyi. Since her discovery, she has been kept very busy with a variety of acting roles. She has been in the comedy Shaolin Soccer (known in the United States as Kung-Fu Soccer), Jeff Lau's Chinese Odyssey 2002, and just finished working on Chinese director He Ping's Heroes of Heaven and Earth. Sounds like we may be seeing quite a bit more of her in the future.
It is yet to be seen how much marketing money Columbia Pictures will put behind this movie. Hopefully, they have learned from the recent success and popularity of Chinese cinema and the many films we have seen with martial-arts wirework. I think they would be pleasantly surprised by the support they would get from American audiences. (Marty Doskins/BOP)