Passionate Killing in the Dream (1992)

Posted in Reviews by - October 16, 2022
Passionate Killing in the Dream (1992)

A loose Hong Kong remake of Irvin Kershner’s 1978 thriller, Eyes of Laura Mars, featuring a strong central performance from Michiko Nishiwaki, promoted from her usual high-kicking supporting badass role to something far more substantial. She plays Sha Sha, a tough, independent fashion photographer working in Thailand who keeps having premonitions involving Chit Chit (Gordon Liu with a mullet) breaking into the apartments of young women and killing them. Chit Chit is a former Thai kickboxer with serious mental illness, who – in shades of Peeping Tom – can now be found stalking the streets and nightclubs of Thailand, taking creepy voyeuristic photographs with his handheld camera. When Sha Sha informs the cops of her night terrors, Chit Chit closes in on her. It’s a good job she also appears to be a kung fu expert. This is displayed brilliantly in a spontaneous fight scene at a Thai food stall where Sha Sha is hit on by her boss, a fashion designer who goes by the name of ‘Queen’ (Cynthia Lam). During their conversation, they both beautifully – and brutally – take out an entire gang of hotheaded goons with their flying fists and feet in true ‘girls with guns’ aplomb. Michiko also goes toe-to-toe with Gordon Liu who, for someone who made his name playing mostly celibate and pious monks, certainly makes for a great homicidal maniac. Director and fight choreographer Huang Kuo-chu does well to create an effective, creepy atmosphere in what could have been quite a sleazy Category III affair, elevated by committed performances and at least a serious attempt at building sympathy and suspense.

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Editor and creator of Kung Fu Movie Guide and the host of the Kung Fu Movie Guide Podcast. I live behind a laptop in London, UK.

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