Heroes & Villains: Three films starring Jet Li (Eureka Classics) Special Edition Blu-ray
Dr Wai in “The Scripture with No Words”
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Drama
Year Released: 1998, 1996, 1998, 2023 Blu-ray Eureka Video
Runtime: 1h 44m / 1h 31m / 1h 44m
Director(s): Corey Yuen, Siu-Tung Ching, Wei Tung
Writer(s): Sandy Shaw, Jing Wong / Wai-Lun Lam, Cheuk-Hon Szeto / Hing-Ka Chan, Kam Fu Cheng, Vincent Kok
Cast: Jet Li, Anita Mui, Miao Xie / Rosamund Kwan, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Charlie Yeung / Eric Tsang, Simon Yam, Gigi Leung
Where To Watch: available November 20, 2023; pre-order www.eurekavideo.co.uk or www.amazon.co.uk
RAVING REVIEW: Jet Li's foray into a trio of action-packed adventures showcases his remarkable range, from traditional martial arts epics to edge-of-your-seat contemporary thrillers. These films – THE ENFORCER, DR WAI IN THE SCRIPTURE WITH NO WORDS, and HITMAN – weave together drama, action, and humor, offering a multi-dimensional cinematic experience.
In THE ENFORCER, directed by Corey Yuen, we dive into an intense narrative blending family drama with explosive action. Jet Li shines as Kung Wei, an undercover cop infiltrating the depths of Hong Kong's criminal underworld. The film strikes a delicate balance between heart-pounding action sequences and the nuanced portrayal of a father-son relationship. Supporting actors Anita Mui and Miu Tse add depth to the drama with their compelling performances and martial arts expertise. While not Yuen's most acclaimed directorial effort, THE ENFORCER stands out with its classic action storyline and riveting fight scenes.
Shifting gears, DR WAI IN THE SCRIPTURE WITH NO WORDS, directed by Ching Siu-Tung, presents a more lighthearted adventure. Here, Li channels a character reminiscent of iconic adventurers, but the film needs more originality and narrative cohesion. This reflects the fast-paced production environment of Hong Kong's film industry in the 80s and 90s. Despite notable performances by Rosamund Kwan and Charlie Yeung, the film sometimes fumbles, offering a mix of action and humor that only sometimes lands as intended.
Then comes HITMAN, striking a harmonious balance between comedy and action. Li's portrayal of Tai Feng, an aspiring assassin, is gripping and entertaining. Eric Tsang's comedic talent adds a delightful layer to the film, enriching the intense martial arts sequences with light-hearted moments. The movie depicts the secretive assassin world with engaging dialogue and a captivating plot. While less intense than some of Li's other action ventures, HITMAN is a memorable action comedy that spotlights Li's versatility.
Viewed collectively, these films underscore Jet Li's cinematic evolution. Each film's unique tone and narrative style adds a distinct chapter to Li's career. THE ENFORCER stands out for its intense action and emotional family drama blend. DR WAI IN THE SCRIPTURE WITH NO WORDS, despite its playfulness, falls short in Li's filmography, lacking the depth and innovation of the other two films. Conversely, HITMAN combines humor with martial arts, highlighting Li's adaptability across various film genres.
Together, this trio of films celebrates Jet Li's versatility as an actor and reflects the dynamic nature of Hong Kong's action cinema landscape. They span a broad spectrum of storytelling styles, from emotional narratives to light-hearted escapades, all anchored by Li's masterful martial arts skills. This collection stands as a testament to Li's enduring influence in the action genre and offers a window into the adaptability and resilience of Hong Kong cinema.
Limited Edition O Card slipcase featuring new artwork by Sam Gilbey [2000 copies]
All three films are presented in 1080p HD from new restorations across three Blu-ray discs.
Limited edition collectors booklet featuring new essays by Simon Abrams and David Desser [2000 copies]
Disc 1 – THE ENFORCER
1080p presentation of the fully uncut Hong Kong theatrical cut from a new 4K restoration | Original Cantonese mono audio | “Classic” English dubbed audio | Newly translated subtitles | Brand new audio commentary by Mike Leeder & Arne Venema | Archival interview with producer Wong Jing | Archival interview with actor Tse Miu | Archival interview with actor Ken Lo | Deleted Scene | Original Hong Kong trailer
Disc 2 – DR WAI IN THE SCRIPTURE WITH NO WORDS
1080p presentation of the original Hong Kong theatrical cut from a new 2K restoration | Original Cantonese audio available in DTS-HD MA 5.1, stereo and original mono presentations | “Classic” English dubbed audio | Original Alternate “International version” presentation (English and Mandarin audio options) | Newly translated subtitles | Brand new audio commentary by Asian film expert Frank Djeng [International version] | The Smart and The Brave – archival Jet Li featurette | Original Hong Kong trailer
Disc 3 – HITMAN
1080p presentation of the original Hong Kong theatrical cut from a new HD restoration of the original film elements | Alternate “Contract Killer” presentation (Optional English DTS-HD MA 5.1 and stereo audio) | Original Cantonese audio available in DTS-HD MA 5.1 and stereo presentations | English dubbed audio available in both “classic” mono and stereo presentations | Newly translated subtitles | Brand new audio commentary by Mike Leeder & Arne Venema [HK version]| Archival interview with Jet Li | Archival interview with Simon Yam | Archival interview with Keiji Sato | Archival footage from the film’s première | Original Hong Kong trailer and International release trailers
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[photo courtesy of EUREKA VIDEO]