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John Woo Collection DVD 2-Pack: The Killer/ Hard Boiled (1990)

Yun-Fat Chow , Danny Lee , John Woo  |  R |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Yun-Fat Chow, Danny Lee, Sally Yeh, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Kong Chu
  • Directors: John Woo
  • Writers: Barry Wong, John Woo, Gordon Chan
  • Producers: Amy Chin, Hark Tsui, Linda Kuk, Terence Chang
  • Format: Color, Letterboxed, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Fox Lorber Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: October 3, 2000
  • Run Time: 236 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004W459
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #205,737 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "John Woo Collection DVD 2-Pack: The Killer/ Hard Boiled" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

The Killer
John Woo's 1989 Hong Kong action classic, a stylish, bullet-riddled elegy to friendship under fire, firmly established him as the maestro of mayhem. Superstar Chow Yun-fat, Asia's king of cool, plays the most charming hit man ever (and yes, he only takes contracts on those who deserve it), but when one of his killings leaves an innocent nightclub singer (Sally Yeh) blinded, he dedicates his life to giving her back her sight. Danny Lee is the cop on his tail, but the two adversaries become unlikely comrades when the mob decides to cancel its debt to Chow by taking him out, leading to a beautifully filmed and incredibly violent confrontation. Woo places the showdown in a church and punctuates the acrobatic gunfight with images of religious icons, flying doves, and burning candles. An ode to Jean-Pierre Melville's existential gangster classic Le Samourai, Woo's delirious mix of melodrama and stylized action recalls the balletic bloodletting of Sam Peckinpah, the elegant camerawork of Martin Scorsese, and the operatic, larger-than-life grandeur of Sergio Leone. Woo's love of American musicals (and his own background as a dance instructor) adds a touch of grace to the fluid choreography of the action scenes. In terms of sheer action, Woo topped himself a few years later with Hard-Boiled, his Hong Kong swan song, but most critics still rate The Killer as his masterpiece. --Sean Axmaker

Masterful Hong Kong action director John Woo (The Killer, Face/Off) turns in this exciting and pyrotechnic tale of warring gangsters and shifting loyalties. Chow Yun-fat (The Replacement Killers) plays a take-no-prisoners cop on the trail of the triad, the Hong Kong Mafia, when his partner is killed during a gun battle. His guilt propels him into an all-out war against the gang, including an up-and-coming soldier in the mob (Tony Leung) who turns out to be an undercover cop. The two men must come to terms with their allegiance to the force and their loyalty to each other as they try to take down the gangsters. A stunning feast of hyperbolic action sequences (including a climactic sequence in an entire hospital taken hostage), Hard-Boiled is a rare treat for fans of the action genre, with sequences as thrilling and intense as any ever committed to film. --Robert Lane

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why are these in DVD Mono?? October 17, 2000
I don't understand this at all. While I know that these are the greatest action movies made so far on film, the sound transfer is mono.
It won't deter the action, or your appreciation of John Woo's genius. But if you do want the DVD Dolby 5.1, surround sound versions, you need to find the MEI AH Laser Company copies of these films.
There is no commentary, just the film itself. But the video transfer has the same quality.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Double Dynamite! February 19, 2001
Verified Purchase
This is an excellent, affordable deuce of John Woo classics. They are an interesting pair, showing different facets of John Woo's directorial style. While primarily known for his action, I find John Woo more compelling for his ability to weave a good story and compelling characters into action scenes. This is what separates his movies from the American equivalent.
"The Killer" is a story driven, personal, Shakespearian epic of honor and loyalty. Chow Yun Fat and Danny Lee are flip sides of a coin, one a cop, the other a paid killer, who find themselves drawn into an unavoidable admiration for each other. The violence in this film is poetic rather than gratuitous. The ending is personal and the deaths are meaningful. I find this to be the superior film.
"Hard Boiled" is the counterbalance to "The Killer." It is sheer, over the top violence. Shotguns fire the famous "John Woo Bullets" that explode upon impact. Sub machine guns never run out of ammo. In this film, Chow Yun Fat is the hard boiled policeman and Tony Leung Chiu Wai is an undercover agent that may have gone too far. Like "The Killer," these two dangerous characters gain a grudging respect for each other. Unlike the "The Killer," "Hard Boiled" finds it's big finish in a Hollywood style extravaganza of blood and bullets on a major scale.
Again, this is a really great package with interesting commentary and a few features. Who knew that John Woo's films are influenced by the American musical? I recommend "A Better Tomorrow" to follow up this great set.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heavenly Combination September 12, 2000
If you have heard much talk about Woo's movies, but you have yet to experience any for yourself, then these two movies are *BY FAR* the best examples of his work you could wish for.
For the uninitiated, John Woo's movies always bear the same credentials, and these two are no exception: Non-Stop, masterfully realized action, and a terrible script that could have fallen from Satan's very backside:
DIALOGUE TAKEN FROM HARD BOILED -"It's a paper Crane. I make one every time I kill somebody. What do you think, should I make you one?" -"No Thanks." - etc etc.
What his Movies lack in script-polish and the like, they more than make up for in the dream-like directing, and astoundingly intense cinematography.
The Killer's bizarre, and often surreal action sequences, will leave you begging for more of the same, yet, if you're new to Woo's wonderous blend of traditional storyline coupled with truly jaw-dropping action sequences, you may doubt his credentials somewhat. From the opening scene in the Yun Fat's hideaway Church, to the terrible Mickey Mouse gags, right through to the bizarre combination of Japanese love songs playing along to some rather gruesome gunfights; The Killer is a must-own. It's a fine example of Woo's work prior to Hard Boiled, which is a good thing, because...
Hard Boiled is simply the Action fans' Action movie. It doesn't get any better than this. From the moment the opening credits begin, you know the guy holding the Tequila (being "slammed" in close-up)is hard as nails. The action simply doesn't stop. Ever. And it's the kind of action that keeps you rooted to your seat.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard Boiled is worth it alone. December 18, 2004
"Give a man a gun and he is a hero. Give him two and he is God"

Nothing can quite prepare you for the amount of bullets that are used in this film - all done to an impeccable action style that has still not been beat. If there was ever a Guinness Book of Records for the "Most bullets shot in a film" John Woo's Hard Boiled would be first place for a very long time. It is a terrible shame that this director has only been toned-down by Hollywood. There is not a hope that he would be allowed to do what he has done here with Hong Kong actors to the Hollywood cream of the crop. It seems that it is okay to have a Hong Kong Asian to shoot the hell out of everything but this same action when applied to Western culture would only shock and shame. The same can be said for the star of Hard Boiled - Chow Yun-Fat (Crouch Tiger, Hidden Dragon) who since moving to the West has fired less bullets in all his Hollywood films put together than he does in the first five minutes of this film. Does that really matter? In many ways - Yes it does. Unlike THEIR Hollywood films the gun violence here is not gratuitous. It is artistic and warrented. No one can come away from this film to say that have seen unjustified and unnecessary amounts of actions. It is all integral to the style and plot of this movie. Yes, innocent people do get mowed down in a hail of hot lead and yes the violence is bloody, but is that not what gun violence is? Here you see exactly what guns do to people. Forget Michael Moore's "Bowling for Columbine" - The true message of gun control is right here! The plot is even about the dangers of gun smuggling!

One thing for sure is that there is more gratuitous gun violence in most Hollywood productions than there is here.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars You are gonna be really hard pressed to find 2 better Hong Kong action...
Both movies are brilliantly acted but the Killer has a very good story and is Chow Yun Fat's best role ever and then watch Hard-Boiled after to that to see an even darker movie... Read more
Published on September 13, 2006 by morgoth
5.0 out of 5 stars Bullets, bullets and more bullets!!!!
The only thing I have to say is that this movie is one of the most action pack and non stop shooting,I can easily said that i saw this movie a few times and beleive me i never ever... Read more
Published on August 12, 2004 by P. Molina
5.0 out of 5 stars Great flicks last forever-special effects age!
Must see action films that are timeless.special effects only last a few years than we the public tire of them. Great direction last. Read more
Published on November 16, 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Two influential action classics
I don't understand the other reviewer. The Killer is, with Die Hard, the best and most influential action movie of the 1980s, period. Read more
Published on October 31, 2002 by "jackspritzer"
1.0 out of 5 stars not very good
this movie is plain bad. yes good gun fight but where's the kung fu. Theirs plenty of american made film that are way better in terms of action sequence. Read more
Published on October 13, 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Why Put Two Movies Together?!!!
I love both movies here, but why not release them individually,DVD 2-packs are a pet peeve of mine. Somtimes you just want each film treated with individual respect, and sometimes... Read more
Published on September 12, 2002 by George H. Wells Jr.
Published on March 1, 2002 by Marilyn Keller
5.0 out of 5 stars Both sides of the brain
If there is one thing that can be said about this double set of John Woo is that it represents the two faces of his story telling: action/drama(The Killer) and... Read more
Published on February 24, 2002 by eightpointagenda
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow. 2 greatest action flicks ever made on DVD
If you like action you need to own these. quite simply these are the two greatest action films ever made. nothing arnold made can ever compare to these. Read more
Published on May 5, 2001 by Patrick Bateman
5.0 out of 5 stars Must own for real aciton fans
These movies are both amazin action films. The Killer is about a hitman running from the mob while teaming up w/ a cop. Read more
Published on March 19, 2001 by Tyrone
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