View Full Version : Johnnie To's Drug War

Ian Jane
11-12-2012, 06:03 PM
All Hail City On Fire (http://www.cityonfire.com/johnny-to-and-wai-ka-fai-to-shoot-drug-war-in-mainland-china/) for breaking this news.

"THE MOVIE: Chinesefilms.cn has reported that Johnnie To and Wai Ka-Fai are teaming up again for a new a gangster film titled Drug War (Du Zhan), which will be shot in Mainland China. The last time Johnnie To shot a movie in the mainland was over 30 years ago during the production of his first film, 1980′s The Life-taking Golds."

More To is generally a good thing in my opinion.


Not really sure what's going on in the trailer but it looks violent and slick and cool.

Ian Jane
12-10-2012, 01:59 PM
Coketastic Poster!


Ian Jane
02-13-2013, 01:40 PM
Well Go USA have done the right thing and picked this up for US distribution after the Berlin screening that just took place. Confirmed by Variety (http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118066170/?cmpid=RSS|News|FilmNews).

There's gotta be at least one or two other Johnnie To fans kinda maybe sorta excited by this?

Ian Jane
02-15-2013, 05:48 PM
Another rad to the bone brand new poster image for this.


Paul L
02-15-2013, 06:11 PM
I'm really looking forward to this.

Ian Jane
03-14-2013, 04:31 PM
New trailer online here (http://www.filmsmasharchives.com/musicvideo.php?vid=fb74b6e85) with English subs!

Paul L
03-15-2013, 04:11 PM
Looking good so far :) When's this out in China?

Ian Jane
03-15-2013, 04:18 PM
IMDB says April 18th in HK but who knows!

Paul L
03-15-2013, 04:28 PM
Not long, then :) Guess there's no chance of an official release over here, so this'll be an import for me.

Ian Jane
04-18-2013, 10:35 AM
Extremely positive review for the movie here (http://twitchfilm.com/2013/04/review-drug-war-supplies-high-octane-entertainment.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TwitchEverything+%28Twitch%29 ). I can't wait to see this. Hurry up, Well Go!

Ian Jane
06-28-2013, 11:06 AM
Fancy new one sheet.


Barry M
07-01-2013, 11:49 AM
I picked up the Media Asia R3 dvd on Saturday at Pacific Mall, watched it this morning to celebrate Canada Day.

Good stuff, straight-ahead storyline is driven by great tension-ratcheting score (almost as strong as THE MISSION). The establishing scenes move fast, but the payoff is always the next step in the process rather than any release in tension. By the end, the big shootout's been earned. Great lead in Honglei Sun, and Louis Koo pulls enough sympathy out of his harder role that the movie achieves the feel of a Warner Bros. gangster epic. (Working under censorship requirements mean crime must be shown not to pay, but I think that may have allowed them to keep the violence satisfying. Is SARFT the new Production Code?)

I'll probably go see this theatrically, too.

Ian Jane
07-11-2013, 08:31 AM
Theatrical dates so far are:

7/26 - New York City (IFC Center)
8/2 - Los Angeles (Sundance Sunset Cinemas)
8/9 - Chicago, Seattle, and CANADA (Toronto/Vancouver/Montreal)!
8/16 - Denver, Portland, Philadelphia, and more!
8/23 - Austin!

Barry M
07-11-2013, 01:18 PM
This weekend, Johnnie To is doing stuff at TIFF in Toronto, including a screening of DRUG WAR, an "In Conversation" thing, and screenings of ELECTION & ELECTION 2.

DRUG WAR, Sunday July 14, 9:00

Conversation + ELECTIONS, Saturday July 13, 4:00 onwards...

Ian Jane
07-18-2013, 10:12 AM
US Blu-ray cover art (not surprisingly, it looks more or less like the poster - unless they change it up).

Release date slated for 10/15/13. (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DSQV1I8/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00DSQV1I8&linkCode=as2&tag=cognitrespon-20)

No word on extras or specs yet.


Paul L
07-18-2013, 06:18 PM
I watched this at the weekend. It's slightly propagandistic but very potent stuff. I loved the ending. Nicely-shot too.

07-18-2013, 09:41 PM
I have to admit I haven't been the biggest admirer of Johnny To in the past. I've been let down one to many times by films like PTU, FULL TIME KILLER & VENGEANCE...all 3 oversold and underachieved IMO but DRUG WAR goes down as one of his better films & I'm interested in picking up the US blu ray if I can get it on the cheap.

Ian Jane
07-19-2013, 09:04 AM
I'm with you on PTU but I loved Fulltime Killer and Vengeance both.

The Silly Swede
12-28-2013, 03:32 PM
I saw this the other night. It was pretty good, though I felt it was a bit overhyped around these parts. I felt it was a solid cop movie with beleviable plot and characters, but that is also all it was. No big action setpieces and no real dazzling plot. Solid but overhyped is my verdict.

Ian Jane
04-19-2018, 10:28 AM
This is getting a Korean remake!


Ian Jane
06-05-2018, 05:19 PM
Well Go has picked up the SK remake, and City On Fire has very good things to say about it.



06-05-2018, 09:02 PM
I'm definitely going to check this out when it comes out at my local CGV. I've enjoyed his previous films like LIKE A VIRGIN and SILENCED. Got both on blu ray. Wish the political revenge thriller, 26 YEARS was available on blu ray as that was a great flick and was written by Lee Hae-young. Interestingly, he was recently outed as part of Korea's #metoo movement but he rebuffed all the claims from women by coming out of the closet. That's one way to wiggle out of it.:biggrin:

06-11-2018, 05:59 PM
So I went last night to check out this remake of DRUG WAR and I actually enjoyed it more than the HK version. I think it was the cast that did it for me. Choi Jin-woong was great as the hard headed detective on a mission to bring down a drug lord and Ryu Jun-yeol as the mysterious low level drug handler turned informant. The mute siblings who cook the drugs (the original were brothers but it added something to the mix to have one of them be a gal here) were scene stealers as well. But the biggest scene stealer was Kim Joo-hyuk (sadly his last role as he was killed in an auto accident late last year) as a Chinese-Korean boss & his doped up gal pal played to the hilt by actress, Jin Seo-yeon. Imagine a whacked out Tony Montana mixed with a bit of the Alfred Molina character from BOOGIE NIGHTS. It was so over the top and verged on parody but I couldn't keep my eyes off those two every time they were onscreen. Also the ending of the Korean version was much more nuanced and solemn than To's version as he was obviously hamstrung by the PRC film board's "moral" code that the baddies always face justice and crime doesn't pay mantra. This is no cheap Korean knockoff remake of a HK movie ala A BETTER TOMORROW -- far from it. Recommended!