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Archive - 7th Five Flavours Film Festival

Fulltime Killer

Chuen jik sat sau
Hong Kong 2001, 102’
subtitles: Polish and English
director: Johnnie To, Wai Ka-fai
screenplay: Wai Ka-fai, Joey O’Bryan
cinematography: Cheng Siu-keung
editing: David M. Richardson
music: Guy Zerafa, Alex Khaskin
cast: Andy Lau, Takashi Sorimachi, Kelly Lin, Simon Yam
language: Japanese, Cantonese, Mandarin, English
colouration: colour

Film description

The most international of Johnnie To's films – the action throws the characters all over East Asia. The Japanese, O, is the best assassin on the continent. Disciplined and elusive, he eliminates targets without leaving any traces or witnesses. One day he meets Lok, an enthusiast of action cinema. He challenges O, hoping to take over the master’s place in the world of contract killers, along with the beautiful Taiwanese, Chin. Only one of them can survive their final encounter.

Directed at the pan-Asian audience, with multilingual dialogues, "Fulltime Killer" is woven with allusions to classic action cinema, with a mandatory gunfight in the heart of the concrete Hong Kong. To plays with story-telling, changing the narrators and using disquieting clashes of strong emotions. Brutal and lyrical, original and full of clichés, limited by modest budget, and yet made on a spectacular scale - "Fulltime Killer" is a proud heir of the best traditions of the Hong Kong cinema.

Marcin Krasnowolski

Johnnie To

Director, screenwriter, producer (born 1955), author of films belonging to many genres and styles, best known as the master of action cinema. Awarded at numerous festivals, a cult artist and a role model for filmmakers like Quentin Tarantino, appreciated for combining sharp social observations with dynamic image and unconventional narration.

Selected filmography:

1980 Bik seoi hon saan dyut meng gam / The Enigmatic Case
1989 Ah-long dik gu si / All About Ah-long
1995 Mou mei san taam / Loving You
1998 Bohater nie umiera nigdy / Chan sam ying hung / A Hero Never Dies
2001 Chuen jik sat sau / Fulltime Killer
2003 Daai zek lou / Running on Karma
2005 Wybór mafii / Hak se wui / Election
2007 Psychodetektyw / San taam / Mad Detective
2012 Kartel / Du zhan / Drug War

Wai Ka-fai

Writer, director, producer. Best known for his frequent collaborations with Johnnie To, with whom he formed Milkyway Image film studio.


1996 Woh ping faan dim / Peace Hotel
1997 Jat go zi tau di daan sang / Too Many Ways To Be Number One
2001 Chuen jik sat sau / Fulltime Killer
2003 Daai zek lou / Running on Karma
2006 Jui oi nui yun kau muk kong / The Shopaholics
2007 Psychodetektyw / San taam / Mad Detective
2009 Joi sun ho / Written By

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