Dr. Tong Qian (Zhao Wei) is on shift when a Chief Inspector (Louis Koo) walks into her hospital with injured detainee, Shun (Wallace Chung), staying close by as he anticipates an imminent rescue mission by his accomplices.
As intriguing as this premise is, most of the movie feels like the Chinese adaption of Grey’s Anatomy (2005), and a bad one at that. This is caused by the film’s greatest flaw, which is its utterly dismal dubbing. For synchronicity’s sake, that side of it seems fairly sound. It’s the vocal performances… And they commit one of the most unforgivable sins in movie entertainment. They all sound bored. In effect, making the movie sound boring, which in effect bores you as a viewer. Recall, if you will, the old dinosaur guy from Mrs Doubtfire (1993), who was so boring that the cameraman fell asleep. Remember the way he spoke. Now imagine 30 of him, except they’re all Chinese. I may have misled you here, but it’s nowhere near as funny as you might be thinking right now…
This major misstep only makes it easier to notice the other elements that don’t fit into place. Such as the villain of this piece, Mr. Bullet Head. He never becomes anymore intimidating than a cocky little schoolboy. Annoying, yes, but about as scary as a wet teabag.
What perhaps is most perplexing about the actual story is Dr. Tong Qian’s character arc. An operation she performed resulted in a man’s paralysis. Respectfully, so what? Surgery is life-saving but it comes with many, many risks. Maybe I have been conditioned by too many movies and TV shows, but seen as just about every hero/heroine we’ve ever seen grace our screens deals with coping after the deeply felt loss of a loved one, Qian’s arc just doesn’t feel significant enough to warrant one giving a shit.
Finally, the climactic showdown arrives and it’s just the stylish, action-punch-packin’ payoff that you deserve for enduring such a dull build-up. Having witnessed the ultimately awesome church massacre scene in Kingsman: The Secret Service back in 2014, it’s hard to be impressed by anything that doesn’t go above and beyond that. And it’s the difference in technique that almost takes Three to that level. The main difference is the slow-motion, which I have to say is beautifully done as gunshot wounds bloom like roses left and right. The soundtrack to it is, so unfortunately, fucking irksome. Still, it is an amazing scene.
It’s Grey’s Anatomy with guns…eventually…