Fulltime Killer Commentary

DVD cover

Commentary done between myself (Neil Koch, aka gweilo845) and "Mighty Peking Man" (afulltimekiller) from City on Fire on 2/9/02

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When you see the speaker icon, click on it to hear some sounds.

gweilo845: So you don't have the DVD for this?

afulltimekiller: I do, but a friend has my copy. I get it back tomorrow.

gweilo845: Ah... I was just going to say that this is really good for a HK DVD.

afulltimekiller: What a cool DVD case. It's almost as good as that "thong" shot of Kelly Lin.

gweilo845: Nothing is as good as that. Nothing.

afulltimekiller: I caught that, put it on pause, and zoomed in.


One of the true joys of the DVD medium for dirty-minded inebriates like us is the ability to save shots like this for *ahem* posterity.


What I had to tell MPM during this commentary.

gweilo845: Like Booger in "Revenge of the Nerds"!

afulltimekiller: You lost me. I haven't seen that flick since... since it came out on video.

gweilo845: It's one of the all-time classic lines: "We've got bush, we've got bush!"


Booger, a working-class hero and a real man's man.


One of the greatest movie quotes ever.

gweilo845: Anyway, have you seen Takashi Sorimachi in anything else?

afulltimekiller: Nope. Never. I want to though. That guy is cooler than that other Japanese guy... what's his face... Japanese guy from "Chungking Express". Help me out.

gweilo845: Takeshi Kaneshiro. I just saw him in "Dr. Wai" with Jet Li. What a crappy movie! Getting back to FTK, we have our first film reference here with "Terminator 2". They even use similar sound effects.


Candygram for Mongo!

afulltimekiller: Yeah. I like when Tok fires that shotgun while staring right at his target in the cell. Classic shit!

gweilo845: I'm not a real big Andy Lau fan, but he is fucking cool in this movie. He should do all his movies with Johnnie To. And the next movie reference goes to "El Mariachi". Also a bit of "Dragon Inn".

afulltimekiller: Nah. Lau Ching-Wan should be in all of Johnnie To's movies. He should have played Simon's part.

gweilo845: What did you think about the use of English in the movie? It seems strange when Andy and Lam Suet are speaking English to each other.

Lam Suet

Hennigan's makes any occasion special. Enjoyed by sleazy crime bosses all over the world.


Just another typical day in the high class world of murder for hire.

gweilo845: And we have another movie reference with "Le Samourai".

afulltimekiller: Nice catch on the references man. I didn't mind the English, aren't most of them dubbed anyway? The only English that bothered me was Simon Yam's. He's cool but seems almost un-cool when he speaks with his squeaky voice.

gweilo845: I don't think they are dubbed. Andy still has a lot of a Cantonese accent in his voice. The next movie reference is "Chungking Express".

afulltimekiller: Like I said in my review, people shouldn't be too critical towards this movie. FTK is simply a dedication to all the men like us, who enjoy these types of film. Hence, all the references.

gweilo845: I agree. It's just an action movie. People take Johnnie To too seriously I think. They forget that he still makes "pop" films. Like other directors, he is a film fan and he wants to pass on some of his like on to his audience.

afulltimekiller: Sorry for the change of subject, but you gotta agree with me on this... there is something seriously dirty, sexy, and bad about Kelly Lin. I think she'd give me a run for my money in bed. She's dirty. And I love it.


Chicks with glasses rule, because if you can get them to take them off, you will look a lot better to the lady because they won't be able to see you.


Even OJ Simpson agrees that Kelly is one hot babe.

gweilo845: Oh yeah! Anyway, now we have the obvious "Point Break" reference. I think it's just ballsy. The poster is even in the video shop!

afulltimekiller: What a movie to reference. Patrick Swayze is just wrong in so many ways. I think it's cool though to reference an almost forgotten action movie.

gweilo845: I think it might be a subtle "fuck you" to Hollywood trying to do HK stuff. Keanu is in "Point Break"... it's almost saying "this is supposed to be your action star?" Kind of subversive.

afulltimekiller: Yeah, you may be right. Kinda attacking "Matrix", eh?

Kelly and Andy

"So do you like gladiator movies?"


My own attempt of a pick-up line on Kelly. Obviously it did not work.

afulltimekiller: What do you think of the music? I think it's all catchy stuff. It's beautiful and goes well with the film. Especially "Where My Heart Belongs".

gweilo845: I'm not a big fan of the songs, but the score is excellent. To's movies always have great musical scores.

afulltimekiller: The guy who did the soundtrack for this film also did Ringo Lam's "Replicant". Just a little footnote there.

gweilo845: What is the movie they are watching in the theatre?

afulltimekiller: First, "The Mission" trailer, then they are watching "Where A Good Man Goes", which are both Johnnie To films. Neil, do I actually know something you don't? Or were you testing me?

gweilo845: Actually, I haven't seen "Good Man" so you have got me there. I think the way they both talk in Japanese is also kind of a parody, because Japanese films are thought of as really cool in HK.

Kelly and Andy

Only in a Hong Kong theatre could some guy in a Bill Clinton mask sit and give a running commentary and not get kicked out. The last time I tried that I ended up talking to the concrete outside instead.


The result of my own commentary.

afulltimekiller: Dude, that scene where Kelly goes "hmmm hum" sarcastically to Tok just about kills me.

gweilo845: Another movie reference here. Takashi's setup -- posing as a cheesy reporter -- is from "Day of the Jackal" and the use of classical music while killing is from "High Risk". The shot where Andy caps that guy in the kneecaps is probably one of the coolest ever.

afulltimekiller: Sure is, especially when Andy walks away and takes off his mask. I don't think anyone can do that kind of thing better than him.

gweilo845: Yeah, I have to admit, Andy has the best shit-eating grin. Normally, it annoys me, but in this movie it works. It's all about the director and editor. You know, he normally doesn't like to smile in movies because it shows his wrinkles.


"I'm the king of the world! Oh, er... wrong movie. But I still get more tail than a toilet seat, so there."


Andy drops the knowledge bomb.

afulltimekiller: I didn't know that. I can't believe he is worried about that. Chinese people barely show their age anyway. This movie makes me want to go out and buy a Snoopy set, complete with a display case. That'd be cool.

gweilo845: Well, the teenyboppers are vicious. Ekin Cheng is only like 34 and he is getting crap. And we have the "Leon" reference now.

afulltimekiller: Speaking of "Leon", wonder if Johnnie To and Luc Besson are going to work together on something. I've been hearing this for two years now.

gweilo845: Yeah, that rumor has been going around for a while. Besson should just move over to HK. I would love to see something with the visual style of "The Fifth Element" and a story like "The Mission".

afulltimekiller: Yeah. That'd be cool. What do ya think about the "Mission" remake?

gweilo845: I'm not sure. The original is just about perfect in my book because of the actors. You can replicate a lot of things, but not chemistry between actors.

afulltimekiller: Very true. Have you seen all the Milkyway films?

gweilo845: No. Most of the major ones, but not stuff like "Help!!!". Anyhow, I have a question... why is this movie set in 2003?

afulltimekiller: Is it really? I didn't even know that. Where does it say that?

gweilo845: It's on Andy's mom's grave.

afulltimekiller: Duh! I feel stupid now. Hmmmm, I'm not sure why. I think it's some reference to some film that took place in that same time. Who knows?

gweilo845: I really like the cinematography in here. There's some nice symbolism when Kelly is in the red-lighted apartment and Takashi is in the blue-lighted one, which is another T2 reference.

afulltimekiller: Damn! This film has more references than GAWD!

gweilo845: That's one of the cool things about it. Tarantino wishes his next movie could be this cool.


Quentin Tarantino, giving hope to nebbishy white guys with bad haircuts everywhere that maybe one day they too will be able to bang a hot Hollywood actress.

afulltimekiller: Don't knock Tarantino, man. I have faith in him. He just needs to get off his ass.

gweilo845: Oh, I'm not ripping him. Have you seen him on "Alias"? Get back to directing, jerk!

afulltimekiller: "Alias"? No, I didn't. Did he make a fool of himself? I thought he DID direct that?

gweilo845: No, he's like the main bad guy in it now.

afulltimekiller: Oh God. Hey, here's more proof that the nice girls like the bad boys: Kelly fucks Tok, and O doesn't get any until whenever.

gweilo845: No one turns down Andy!

afulltimekiller: By the way, did you notice the goof the first time when Tok sends O a message through the computer?

gweilo845: No.

afulltimekiller: Well, only a fool like me wold catch this. Tok sends O a message though some kind of chat program that says "You can't run forever". When O gets it, it says "YOU CAN'T RUN FOREVER" in all caps. Like I said, only a guy like me would notice such a trivial thing.

gweilo845: Getting along, now we have a "Warriors" reference with the near-miss in the subway.

afulltimekiller: Ah! Dude, don't even mention "Warriors". What a piece of dog crap that was. I saw parts of it for the first time a while ago. That movie does NOT deserve "cult" status.

gweilo845: It makes me laugh. Like that dude from "The Bloodhound Gang" is gonna be a gangster!

afulltimekiller: I understand it was made in the late 70's or whatever, but it's so... its age shows so much. "Can you diiiiiiiiig it"? Now "Mad Max"... that's a movie.

gweilo845: I think Takashi's character is taken from a Suzuki movie. There's gotta be a reason why he wears those retro clothes.


"I'm calling to report a robbery... someone stole my clothes and I'm forced to wear these Salvation Army rejects."


Yes, I am going to use this sound clip in every one of these commentaries.

afulltimekiller: I'm sure you're right. What about Tok's 80's clothes. There is one scene where he's dressed like Don Johnson from "Miami Vice"!

gweilo845: Yeah. "Fight Club" reference here. Damn! That bit where Andy pokes Lam in the eye... fuck!

afulltimekiller: Lam Suet is the man. Talk about a character actor!

gweilo845: I think he is the Steve Buscemi of Hong Kong. He's like "that one guy".

afulltimekiller: Yeah. Wonder if the poor guy will ever have a lead role in a movie. But I think the moment he does that he'll be no longer loved.

gweilo845: Hey, if I had a guaranteed bit role in every Johnnie To movie, I would be happy. It's steady work! The shootout in Pakistan or wherever is a nod to "Way of the Gun".

afulltimekiller: Yeah, that's what I was thinking. Wonder when Michael Wong will do a Milkyway flick? Think he's set for one?

gweilo845: Didn't he do one of their comedies?

afulltimekiller: Nope, Wong was never in a Milkyway film. Correct me if I'm wrong. Do you think the "big gun" is a reference to "2000AD"?

gweilo845: Probably... and the alley shootout is from a Japanese movie "Non-Stop".

afulltimekiller: That would make a good trivia question: which of the following actors never worked with Johnnie To? I kinda didn't like that fact that O was riding on a dirtbike. He should of been on a Harley or something. It's just more stylistic.

gweilo845: That bit was taken from another movie. I can't place it right now though.

afulltimekiller: But I suppose it was the budget. I don't think they'd want to ruin a $12000 bike compared to a $3000 one.

gweilo845: Wow, I love this part where O wastes his agent.

afulltimekiller: Why the hell do they dub Cherie Ying's voice with that British accent? In the documentary on the DVD, it's obvious her English is broken.

gweilo845: You know, I have no idea. It would make more sense, and help the movie, if her and Simon both spoke Chinese. She might have learned her lines phonetically on the set. The lip synch seems to be perfect.

afulltimekiller: I guess she's making a pretty good name for herself. Looks like fate is on her side, as she got a starring role in a movie taking over for Cecilia Cheung after she got injured doing that car stunt.

gweilo845: Well, she's pretty and can speak a bit of both Chinese and English which is all you need to be a big time actor now, I guess. Damn, I love this bit where O shoots out the fire hose.

afulltimekiller: Yeah. Really good scene there. Simon Yam practically flies at the beginning of this shootout.

gweilo845: Well, in the behind the scenes stuff on the DVD he's getting slapped in the head with the hose! Let's see a US actor do that. Plus, this stuff is shot and edited so well.

afulltimekiller: Yes it is. The only REAL complaint I have about this movie is the fact that Kelly starts to bust caps in everyone!

gweilo845: But this scene where Andy is taking out all the cops from the building is just so beautifully shot and edited you can kind of forgive stuff like that. Hollywood can try to steal all the HK shit it wants, but only HK film crews can put togther a sequence like that.


Now, kids, don't get any ideas about running up to a rooftop and shooting cops after watching this movie.


Andy is disappointed with each miss.

afulltimekiller: Yep. From this point, this is when "Fulltime Killer" becomes "The Simon Yam Character's Story".

gweilo845: Yeah. This is why it only earns a 9 and not 10.


Simon sees the ending for the movie, and then his paycheck compared to what that kid from "American Pie" made.


Simon sees his check for the first time.

afulltimekiller: I read a recent interview that sheds more light on the weird "narration" changes. Johnnie To explained why and said something like how every character in the film had a "different" story to tell.

gweilo845: Well, I get that, but I think using Simon's character was a weak motivation. There's a "The Shining" reference here.

afulltimekiller: Jumping a little forward... could that classical music during O's death be a nod to "Battle Royale" when Mitsuko dies? The same classical music plays. "Shining" reference? Where?

gweilo845: He's writing the same thing over and over. The shot where O and Kelly are driving down the road is a reference to "Breathless".

afulltimekiller: Did you catch the Sukiyaki music? That was a reference to "A Hero Never Dies".

gweilo845: Oh yeah, nice one.

afulltimekiller: Kidding!

gweilo845: Well, who knows with this movie!

afulltimekiller: True. Okay, this whole field thing, is it a reference?

gweilo845: I think it is from "Ran". There is some symbolism at least with the lone tree.

afulltimekiller: Are you familair with that Andre The Giant image that became a symbol all around the world?

gweilo845: Yeah, I think so.

afulltimekiller: Well, it made it in "Fulltime Killer".

gweilo845: Alain Delon reference again with the black suit.

afulltimekiller: Have you seen any Alain Delon movies?

gweilo845: Yeah.

afulltimekiller: Any good?

gweilo845: He's fucking cool, man. Imagine Harvey Keitel or some other hardass actor and then put him in the 1960's.


Alain Delon -- a cool guy even if he is French.

gweilo845: "Metal Slug" reference. One of the best games of all time. "Die Hard" reference here with the music.

afulltimekiller: Yep. Caught that. Could the fireworks thing be a reference to "Police Story 2"?

gweilo845: Hmmm, maybe. Of course, the whole "dream" ending is a nod to "Taxi Driver". Anyway, despite some nagging fanboy problems, FTK is a great movie. The best from HK in 2001 as far as I'm concerned.

afulltimekiller: Yeah. I put it up there with "A Hero Never Dies" and "The Longest Nite". People that dislike FTK are getting the wrong idea. Johnnie To wasn't trying to make HK's answer to Citizen fucking Kane.

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