The prequel to the popular character, Laughing Gor (Michael Tse) in the highly rated TVB drama series Emergency Unit. This movie tells the story of Laughing and before he join the police force has a dark background as member of a tried under Chou (Anthony Wong). Chou was the leader of the triad and persuaded Laughing to join the police force as an undercover for the triad to spy on police activities. While in the police academy, Laughing excel but not well enough to be confirm as a police officer. Instead he was recruited to be an undercover agent to spy on some illegal activities. Laughing now maintains the life as a double undercover agent, with crucial information from two sides. But an incident disturbs the balance of the two identities and threatens to blow his cover. With both the triad and police force suspicious of his loyalty, Laughing does not know who he can trust to save him.
User Reviews: Fans of popular Hong Kong drama series, E.U (2009) will remember Laughing, better known as Laughing Gor, the undercover cop, in which the role leads actor Michael Tse to fame in Asia. Now, here comes the movie version on the life of Laughing, which gives the viewers of E.U a better idea on the background of Laughing.
The story begins with the police receiving tips from Laughing on drug smuggling, which ends up with the arrest of Laughing and how he was wanted by both the police and the secret society. One wants him alive, another wants him dead. The arrest was led by Officer Pun (Felix Wong), which mistakes Laughing as a gangster. Pun’s working partner, Officer Sin (Yuen Biao), met with an car accident, which puts him to a coma and unable to identify Laughing is a police.
On the other side of the law, Brother Yat (Anthony Wong), Laughing’s mentor, is protecting Laughing from being killed by gang members under the instruction of his rival, Zatoi (Francis Ng). The 90 minute movie continues with the flashback of the relationship between everyone on how were they related to each other.
Directed by Herman Yau, Turning Point marks the comeback movie of Shaw Brothers Studio from Hong Kong. A movie made under the joint collaboration with Television Broadcasting International (TVBI), the thriller opens with a healthy box office taking on the opening week. However, the movie not only seemed to be half-baked, but the standard is also a far cry from the movies made during their heydays in the 60’s and 70’s, where Shaw Brothers dominated the Hong Kong film industry back then.
Turning Point can be easily related to Infernal Affairs (2002), where Michael’s role of Laughing is a reprise of Yan by Tony Leung Chiu Wai. Apart from the story, the presentation looks very much like a summarized version of a typical TVBI drama series. From the opening credits, editing to the flow of the story, it follows exactly the style TVBI presented their drama series.
The movie focuses on how Laughing made his escape, and try to avoid the killing from the secret society after the opening scene. The process is short, thus it is back by various flashbacks on the past, such as how Laughing ends up a gangster, Brother Yat’s past with the police force, and Laughing’s love life with Karen (Fala Chen), the younger sister of Zatoi. An overdoing of flashbacks has kill the joy of watching the movie, which leads to plenty of confusion.
The only selling point of the movie is the special appearance of Eric Tsang, Ron Ng and Samuel Chan. While Eric’s appearance as the gang leader is a resemblance of his role as Sam in Infernal Affairs, it doesn’t help much to live up the story. Ron and Samuel, on the other hand, makes a minimal appearance at the end of the movie, where their appearance leads to the story in E.U, where both, together with Michael, makes the biggest attraction in the series.
An advice for fans of Shaw Brothers classics: even though the old Shaw Brothers logo was featured in the movie, do not expect to see their opening logo at the start of the film.
There is a long way for Shaw Brothers to go, after disappearing from the Hong Kong film industry for 12 years.