Full Contact

Full Contact stands out as director Ringo Lam's most visually-impressive film

Director Ringo Lam on Full Contact
"In Full Contact,I tried to make a film that was not so realistic.
I remember I started shooting in Bangkok and during the shooting,I found lots of arguing between the crew members.And everybody complained about each other. I was thinking that we are now out working in Bangkok, we're supposed to be working together in harmony,helping each other to get the job done.Everything was the opposite: those who used to be friends were now complaning about each other. This is what inspired me to put the focus on the theme of betrayal and friends betraying friends in that movie.Where was the loyalty to each other? So it just came about like that. Just at the moment when I feel something very strong that attaches my heart,then I put it in."
(Taken from Hong Kong Film Magazine #4)

My views onFull Contact
Full Contact is to director Ringo Lam what Hard Boiled is to director John Woo,both are great as action films but has little to offer besides that. In Full Contact, director Ringo Lam sets up probably the biggest "screen-duel" in Hong Kong bloodshed history when Chow Yun Fat goes up against another great actor in his own rights,Simon Yam. The story is Full Contact is really nothing much but what the audiences gets to see is an amazing showdown between these two actors. I always like action films with great screen duel which is something director John Woo don't do too often except the recent Face/Off where Hollywood heavyweights John Travolta and Nicolas Cage goes head-to-head. In Full Contact,both Chow Yun Fat and Simon Yam "ignites" the screen with their extraordinary screen presence that really helps set Full Contact apart from your average Hong Kong action flick. Many complain that most of the characters in Full Contact are stereotyped and I agree but the three main lead actors(Chow Yun Fat,Simon Yam & Anthony Wong) are good enough to make you overlook the other weak characters.
Director Ringo Lam pushes the maximum button on Full Contact as the film is filled with non-stop action set-pieces and bloodshed, and also quite heavy on sexual content. Those who find the blood and gore in Prison On Fire a little too much to take should stay away from Full Contact,as the action sequences may not be as realistic but they are no less gorier. As for the sexual content, though there is no nudity,there are several suggestive sexual scenes. Visually,Full Contact stands out as one of Ringo Lam most impressive work. Every set pieces are beautifully-lit with colorful background, especially the final action sequence which was nicely-lit under a firey background. Highlights include the infamous disco shoot-out where Chow and Yam trade bullets in the most unbelieveable way that would even make director John Woo green with envy.

Special note:many have complain that the theatrical release of Full Contact feels cut and I must confirm that it is. Director Ringo Lam had to cut several of the scenes to avoid a Category III label, as a result some of the scenes don't match like the fight in the ice factory where Chow jabbed a thug with his butterfly knife. So far,I have yet to view an uncut version of Full Contact but I heard that there is an uncut bootleg copy flooding around which I generally won't advised you to get. The UK version of Full Contact supposely contains the "eye-ball eating" scene but the butterfly knife-play is unfortunately cut.The latest I heard is that the DVD version of Full Contact released by Media Asia (not the Tai Seng one) contains the cut scenes but I need verification on that. Anyone who has this please contact me at yeowh@pl.jaring.my

click here to return to reviews

click here to return to main page