review by Neo

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Thanks and Good Bye! You will be solely missed...
Life Express is an inspirational, true life story depicting the touching moments near death experiences of children suffering from blood cancer and the will power of doctor’s spirit and to what extent they will go to save a life. How even prisoners can have a heart and that even in the bleakness of times, there is always and still hope in this world. It also depicts the final hour of people before death and death may be touching experience, the journey ahead is should not be seen as the end, but as a place far away, where you can achieve your ambitions there. Blacky Ko final film is one that is not so much about the plot, but about touching the audience heart and the role he play here, no matter how small, does a good job as a reflection of his trademark film career, daredevil car stunt, a prisoner with a heart, love for children and more importantly Blacky has left behind a lasting legacy.

Although starring two of Taiwan hottest stars, Richie Ren and Ruby Lin, both are not the central focus of the movie, with an unknown eight year old kid and his mum as the central focus of the film. Blackie Ko's final film tells the story of a dedicated doctor (Ren) who, accompanied by his girlfriend (Lin), races across Taiwan and China to deliver bone marrow to a cancer patient in Beijing. Filmed in early 2002, the movie has been sitting on a shelf for more than two years. (Official synopsis follows) This is a touching and thrilling story that reflects the deep sentiments between the two straits, Mainland China and Taiwan, which indicates that life reigns top priority, particularly amongst people who runs the same origin of blood.

On hearing that the film has been shelved for two years, I am personally somewhat surprise in a mixed way. Say it is luck, or unfortunate what ever you call it, if I have watched this film even before Blacky’s death, the movie may well be just another movie, but as this is Ko’s final film, Ko’s death does adds an extra layer to the film emotional depth. The performance of the blood cancer kid is natural while not in the same league as the kid in last year’s Lost in Time, this kid is cute and funny and mature in a way that makes the audience sympathies with him. As to the big names, Richie Ren and Ruby Lin, not much can be say except the fact that they have an outstanding chemistry together, hopefully I will see more films with the two starring together in the near future. Lin is pretty and Ren is an easygoing doctor, together they combine well and adds presence to the emotional storyline and also a sense of relieve for the audience. Out of all, the highlight performance is without doubt the director himself – Blackie Ko. He starts off having this triad and bad guy look, but as he looks into his heart, he is exactly like the guy in Jet Li’s My Father is a Hero – a sympathetic villain with a heart! Geez, that face will be solely missed!

Overall, Life Express, is a film that goes beyond what a normal saving lives film will be like and goes a step beyond the message about blood cancer it attempts to deliver, as Blacky takes the film to the next level. The emotional depth is without enhanced by Blacky’s presence and as I say before it is a movie that does well to sum up his career. As a movie career, Blacky has never star by himself, and this film is a good representation of his long distinguish career. From the moment, I watched Blacky in My Father is a Hero, his face is the one I will always remember him for as the bad guy with a heart of gold. Whatever the case is, Blacky Ko has left behind a huge body of work and his final one enables Blacky to successfully leave behind a lasting legacy. As I remember a quote, ‘it doesn’t matter if you die tday or tomorrow, but what’s important is the legacy that you leave behind.’ Once again, thanks Blackie and may you rest in peace and go to a place far away that will allow you to achieve all your ambitions. Good bye, Blackie, thanks for everything!

I rate it 8.5/10

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Product Title : Life Express
Artist Name(s) : Richie Ren | Ruby Lin| Blacky Ko|
Language : Cantonese | Mandarin |
Duration : 94 minutes
Reviewed by Neo (Andrew) - June 2004