Download Formats: M4V, AVI, MTS, MKV, M2TS, 3GP, ASF
original title: Once a Thief
duration: 1h 48min
tags: They only stop to reload.
keywords: art, thief, painting, gunfu, kungfu, martialarts, fistfight, combat, gunfight, dualwield, brutality, gun, bulletballet, bullettime, slowmotionscene, explosion, gunbattle, gunduel, blood, artthief, mon
The movie is dull as dish-water. Featuring insufferable Hong Kong humor (dumb and malicious practical jokes which aren't funny to the ones they happen to, but apparently a barrel of laughs to a Hong Kong audience), and a terrible soundtrack (featuring accordions and such) which is apparently supposed to sound French.
Chow Yun Fat's acting is frankly horrid, and his character is a moronic bastard. He's the main reason that this movie is bordering on the unwatchable. (Not that he hasn't been good in other movies; he certainly has. Especially in Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.)
I watched this movie because I'm a fan of the Once A Thief TV show (1997), which I love. It does everything right - both the comedy and the seriousness -, and happily has nothing whatsoever beyond the name and the fact that it's got three lead characters in it in common with the movie. The characters in the movie are not involved in an organized crime family like the ones in the TV show, and in the TV show they aren't even thieves (well, they were once, but...), so the title doesn't make sense, either, as anything but an attempt to capitalize on the fame of the movie, the wisdom of which is questionable to say the least.
Anyway, I'll spare you my bitterness over John Woo's general suckage and just express my gratitude that he has nothing whatsoever to do with the TV show, despite being credited as executive producer.
3 out of 10. Once A Thief is the first collaboration between John Woo and Chow Yun-Fat after their hugely successful THE KILLER. The movie is about three art thieves that want to still just ONE more picture before they retire. As always it is rather predictable that something very dramatic will happen, but you`ll have to see the movie to find out exactly what. Once a Thief can be called a romantic violence-comedy. The actionscenes are nicely directed, but you won`t be blown away by them as by those in THE KILLER. I don`t like many of the jokes in Once A thief. I think most of them are rather corny and just plain stupid. This is a nice example, where a Hong-kongfilm is TOO weird for a Western audience to really appriciate. But I`m sure that Eastern fans will love it to bits, I didn`t. Worth a look though, and a million times better than the EXTREMELY POOR American re-make from 1996. 7,5/10
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