PTU: Police Tactical Unit
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Follows a police tactical unit during one dangerous night on the streets of Hong Kong. The tough, single-minded team has until dawn to recover a cop's stolen gun and clean up the accompanying mess, but things take a deadly twist when their mission intersects with a web of gangland crimes.
Top Customer Reviews
The movie follows the events that transpired when a roguish anti-organized crime police officer loses his gun after a confrontation with some young gang members. A roving team of PTU chances upon him. Since he is up for promotion, he asks the PTU not to report the loss of the gun. Despite objections from other officers, the squad leader (Simon Yam) promises to help him find it. These set a chain of events that will lead to major repercussions in the Hong Kong underworld.
The joy of watching PTU is in the intense, dead-pan performance and the chuckles brought by the darkly-humorous situations, even if the movie's plot and resolution is highly reminiscent of Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels with some elements of InterMission (although this came before the Irish movie).
A film about honor, duty, and commitment, PTU is well worth a watch, if not a purchase. It is not a "loud" movie, as compared to stereotypical HK police films. One of the best I've seen in the genre, the somewhat predictable ending notwithstanding.
What prevents me from giving this a perfect score is the VERY cheesy 80s era guitar/synth score. To think this film was made in 2003, Johnnie To could've used a less-grating/irritating musical score that would've accentuate the mood of the film. Normally, I wouldn't mind but the soundtrack was so intrusive and yes, I will say again, very cheesy, you cannot help but not notice it.
Although, not in the level of the first Infernal Affairs, PTU is still a solid addition to one's Asian movie collection.
Synopsis derived from the dvd back cover:
Set against a TsimSha Tsui that never sleeps, a stolen police sidearm triggers a suspenseful chain of events. Tracking down the missing gun before dawn, police inspector Lo (Lam Suet, Dog Bite Dog) gets his car vandalized, then he gets beaten up by street thugs. Suddenly, he is wedged between two gangs on a brink of a bloodbath. While staving off investigations by both the anti-vice squad and homicidal unit embroiled in a turf war. His only lifeline is a maverick team of Police Tactical Unit headed by a cop named Mike Ho (Simon Yam, Exiled) who helps him search for his missing gun.
PTU stands for Police Tactical Unit, the film itself uses a very simple premise. But the film is full of the usual Johnnie To signature. Characters, all threads collide in one night, high contrasting light versus dark. A natural minimalization versus a deep sense of dark humor. The film has a very cool and precise timing in its proceedings that the film is a gritty visual ballet.
The delight of watching To's films is the way the scenes unfold; questions are answered and more questions arise.Read more ›
I do have to agree that the title PTU (Police Tactical Unit) was misleading, since the majority of the police portrayed were what we termed `street' cops, walking their beats, not some special tactical units; throughout the movie, all the uniformed and plain-cloth polices were equipped with revolvers instead of the higher capacity automatics, thus no black-clad, helmeted SWAT members armed with submachine guns or assault rifles with limitless ammunition. Sorry to disappointed on that count.
If viewers were expecting some fast action, butt-kicking, Jet Li or Jackie Chan type action flicks, they would be highly disappointed. Though it could not be categorized as a thinking men's crime movie, it is nonetheless, a thought-provoking one, complete with anticipations of every next encounters... literally, around every corners. The whole movie revolved around events all happened within one fateful evening.
What makes this movie very different than others is the very `novel' and yet unique way that just about every character that came onto the screen had something, some part in the overall scheme of the plot! At the same time, there were a couple of red herrings threw in just to make it more interesting, making the viewers wondered just what parts these characters played only to find out they offered false leads.
This movie does raise the question of what makes a good cop, a by-the-book character or someone who is willing to bend some rules and rough up some baddies to get the job done.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not much to recommend here. I normally like the director Johnny To and have several of his movies, and Simon Yam is great but this is a meandering rather dull police story. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Mr Axolotl
Not an action movie if that is what you are looking for. This is more of a crime or cop drama in the line of Infernal Affairs or Serpico. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Eric Barksdale
In Seoul the cops realise they have a crime wave on their hands when the same modus operandi comes to light in a number of vicious murders and robberies. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Tommy Dooley
i Cant Say That I Hate The Movie For They Did Not Send Me The Right Movie That I Paid For They Sent e A childrens Movie Called ( KIPPER PLAYTIME FROM THE HIT TELEVISION SERIES )... Read morePublished on January 25, 2013 by stoneyloc
I'm sure there are those who were bored with the slower pace of this movie but I loved the movie and have watched it several times! Read morePublished on April 16, 2012 by J Tate
This movie seemed a little on the boring side with a surprise ending worthy of a giggle. More of a drama than an action movie and even then its hard to pin a genre in relation to... Read morePublished on September 23, 2010 by DJE87
kind of slow, reminded me of running scared with paul walker a little not badPublished on September 22, 2008 by Moe Mentum
PTU is, unmistakably, a Johnnie To film. That being said, it is not one of his most accessible films. The first time I watched it I felt a bit underwhelmed when it was over. Read morePublished on September 14, 2008 by Garvinstomp
I have been an avid fan of Asian Cinema for the past 10 years or so and I have collected literally hundreds of movies ranging from martial arts, to war, to cops/crime movies. Read morePublished on June 15, 2008 by Michael