review by Neo
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Critics panned this movie, fans left disappointed, movie goers ignored it and all in all a boxoffice flop. So what exactly is causing this huge budget Hollywood style – in the lines of Spiderman meets HK’s Black Mask into such a disappointment? Well, the answer is quite simple, Silver is not even a bad movie, it is basely a mindless fun action ride similar to Jet Li’s Cradle 2 the Grave. May be people are expecting too much from HK former action goddess Michelle Yeoh, but I personally will not in my honest opinion pan this movie, because while it is plotless, it is absolutely mindless fun and an easy going ride, unlike some movies like Love is a Many Stupid Thing (2004) and the horrible Black Mask 2: City of Masks. So, my point is, this movie is not good nor bad, but it is exactly what I call – mindless but fun and easy going movie ride. By the way, it is not a bad action movie either, in terms of action direction, it is better than most crap out of HK nowadays. Yes, I agree the slow motion is cheesy and unnecessary but putting that aside, it is a pretty average actioner starring good action star - Yeoh and a popular and rising star in Richie Ren.
Silver Hawk directed by a reasonable director who have made some very good movies, has some very cool shots, but if there is one to blame it is not the director but the producer – Yeoh herself who over uses the slow motion effect to the point of annoying. The story goes like a superhero flick - A female hero, named "Silver Hawk" (Michelle Yeoh), is in Chung King City to help the City remain its order. Nobody knows where she comes from, but everyone admires her bravery and righteousness. The police think "Silver Hawk" interrupts their work, so they send Detective Man-yan (Richie Ren) to investigate some kidnap cases, and find out Man-yan has some relations with this "Silver Hawk"...Yeah, I know there is no plot and I am sure you can tell this.
The children/ childhood subplot is at times funny and interesting, but that’s like an overused technique as well in a superhero flick. As to the performances, Michelle Yeoh really does look good here, and in fact way better than her last year boring effort of The Touch, where I could not even sit through the movie without constantly going to toilet. However, Silver does not make the same mistake, it looks high budget and the action is refreshing to watch especially the wire stunts (visible ones not those invisible ones). Yeoh proves that she can still act sexy and is a much improved actress from her early days and is very similar in some scenes to say like Carina Lau. She is commanding and is an A list screen presence. I still vividly remember her starring alongside Jet Li in one of my favourite movie – Tai Chi Master where she combines well with action and comedy. I know action will never reach to that level again with so much Hollywood influence in nearly all action movies nowadays. In terms to this year action flicks, few can match Silver Hawk and probably the only one better will be the Jackie Chan’s produced, Enter the Phoenix (2004). As to Richie Ren’s performance, this guy is definitely churning out films at a quick rate this year, but I must say he is one of the better actors of the 30s actors. And this performance though not as good as say like Breaking News (2004), it is still a good presence and with a hint of comical touches. Well, all in all, Ren is great to watch and never bored when he is on screen. As to Brandon Chang, who is one of the few who have martial arts training of the new generation where only Daniel Wu does in terms of popstar. Here not only does he not fight, but is trying to be a Chapman To’s type of role. But he seems to act pretty well in his role though there aren’t he can do either, so he is adequate then.
Overall, Silver Hawk, as I say before, is not a movie you should diss, swear about, pan about (as other critics did), because in my honest opinion, I may say Silver Hawk is not a good movie, but at worst it is not as bad as the critic portray it. As far as Hollywood production goes, it is even can be considered as slightly better than average and a huge par above the boring and painful Black Mask 2: City of Masks. At worst, Silver Hawk is a plotless movie but the good thing about it is that it is a fun action ride and very good mindless entertainment. Who expect a superhero story to be about plot when most already knew it? Okay, to my final line now, one last thing, I reckon Silver Hawk no matter how crap its plot is, it is way cooler than Medallion and Black Mask 2 and on the plus side you have fun performances from Michelle Yeoh and Richie Ren. Oh, on a last note, who is that Japanese girl, she is cute! All in all, Silver Hawk is a good way to waste time and quite good mindless fun and one of the better action flick in HK this year.
I rate it 7/10
on this movie on HK Neo Reviews Forum
Product Title : Silver Hawk
Artist Name(s) : Michelle Yeoh| Richie Ren| Brandon Chang| |
Language : Cantonese | Mandarin |
Duration : 98 minutes
Reviewed by Neo (Andrew) - June 2004