Badges Of Fury, a crime thriller featuring one hell of a martial arts trio with Jet Li (needs no introduction), Collin Chou (The Matrix Reloaded, Flashpoint) and Wu Jing (SPL / Kill Zone) in the lead roles. When a spate of eerie murders erupts across HK two troublemaking cops are assigned to the case. Young maverick WANG and grizzled vet HUANG who is fed up with his reckless younger partner always landing them in hot water. Reaching a dead end after discovering all the victims were former boyfriends of aspiring starlet LIU, the detectives must play a deadly game. One of them must go undercover as Liu’s lover to lure the killer out. Li, Chou and Wu are three of the finest screen fighters in the world and with Kung Fu Hustle and Crouching Tiger vet Po Chu Chui in the producer’s chair here’s betting they’re put to good use.
The fights are mostly spectacular with Jet Li not showing any signs of aging. It’s a shame it’s let down by such appalling CGI/visual effects at some points. Martial arts movies don’t need special effects to be awesome, just human skill. It’s not like Jet Li or Wen Zhang can’t fight; they both have several scenes where they do some breathtaking fighting moves. It should be noted though that Jet is in a bit of a smaller role; he still has plenty to do but the main character is played by Wen Zhang. He actually gets pretty annoying rather fast because he’s such an idiot and you’re almost counting the seconds until Jet comes and saves the day. It references the Police Story movies and a few others too which does get tedious as self reverential humor is always lame.
Badges Of Fury is unabashedly lowbrow, but even judging the movie by its own standards, the comedic scenes are shoddily set-up and highly repetitive. It’s like watching a lobotomised Charlie Chaplin: cast members slam into windows, doors, buildings and glass panes with the frequency of suicidal fruit flies, their gross buffoonery accentuated by cheesy visual effects. Oh and if you were wondering about the header image of this review: The impeccable casting crew to include the baby face Michelle Chen, boob overloading Ada Liu, and the beautiful and elegant Liu Shi Shi completes the female actress lineup while Jet Li and Wen Zhang are often outshine, they provide that decent support role.
The cameos appearing in the movie are a true gem, down to familiar extras and big names taking on minor rolls, it’s just a box full of surprises and when you are able to identify 90% of them, you know you were once a Hong Kong Entertainment fan. There are possibly two (count ’em!) entertaining fight scenes in Badges Of Fury, and an NG sequence that’s more entertaining than the rest of the movie put together. We’re not recommending Badges Of Fury based on those dubious merits, however… after all, you’d have to have the fortitude of Jet Li to put yourself through torture for mediocrity.