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Review In the Line of Duty 4 a.k.a. Wong ga si je IV: Jik gik jing yan (1989): Good but lesser than the first two in the series!

genre: martial arts, action, girls with guns







Many believe this film to be the best if not the best of the franchise. I don't share this opinion. Let me explain why.

This fourth part in the In the Line of Duty film series is rather a odd beast. It feels and plays out like a girls with guns film except the girl in this film, Cynthia Khan, almost plays second fiddle to Donnie Yen who very creatively is named Donny. Cynthia is not kicking ass as much as she is supposed to. Don't worry though. Donnie Yen and  Yuen Yat Chor (brother of director Yuen Woo-Ping) got that covered. Yet here lies the problem. In the first two of film series you had Michelle Yeoh stealing the show and in one of them even got assistance from Cynthia Rothrock. Most of the action scenes involving them are incredibly memorable. The fights and action scenes in this flick are good for sure but lack that special element to make them stand out. This could and should have been Cynthia Khan's show. Granted you can tell that she is not as proficient as Michelle Yeoh to pull off fights and stunts of her own. Still they could have remedied this by having her rely on guns more than her skills as a fighter. 

Surprisingly the story is very serviceable and coherent. Not that it's original or compelling but they do add tension to the action. The acting is also quite decent except I still am completely confused about Michael Wong. I still don't know what to make of him. I mean compared to his brother Russel Wong he pales in comparison. Russel is far more talented than he is and yet it's Michael who is more successful than him. Why? Sure he is dependable. But would it hurt for him to give his characters some quirks or flavour? He is often so average. In any case his role in this film is rather predictable especially since he has been doing the same role for years and years.

This fourth entry is good and enjoyable but unfortunately not that memorable. 




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