The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (Canada)

Hard Boiled

Directed by John Woo

Hosted by John Woo, director and writer.



John Woo


Barry Wong


Chow Yun-Fat, Tony Leung, Therese Mo, Philip Kwok, Anthony Wong

Hong Kong 1992 126 mins OV Cantonese Subtitles : English

“Woo, a natural filmmaker with an eye for arresting images, is also one of the premier orchestrators of large-scale mayhem ever to fill a screen”

This movie is presented as part of the John Woo's Career Achievement Award

A cheerful teahouse in Hong Kong is the scene of a sudden eruption of violence when Inspector "Tequila" Yuen pounces on an illicit gun deal taking place there. His partner doesn’t survive the melée, and Tequila’s propensity for letting hot lead do the talking earns him the ire of his boss. Meanwhile, triad killer Alan is slowly infiltrating the operation of criminal arms dealer Wong—who doesn’t know that Alan is in fact an undercover cop. Tequila and Alan cross paths soon enough, clashing at first but, when the bad guys close in and the path to Wong’s arm cache is revealed, standing back to back—because these two sure as hell won’t stand down.

Heroes of Hong Kong screens Chow Yun-Fat and Tony Leung Chiu-Wai ascend to worldwide stardom, under the masterful direction of the great John Woo, in the 1992 classic HARD BOILED. It’s the pinnacle of Woo’s arc of “heroic bloodshed” gangster movies, for which the phrases “bullet ballet” and “gun fu” were coined. In fact, HARD BOILED set the high bar for action thrillers, and in the 30 years since its release, it remains all but unrivalled and entirely unsurpassed. Alongside Chow and Leung, the cast includes Anthony Wong, perfectly diabolical as the archvillain, and Shaw Brothers kung-fu icons Lo Meng and Philip Kwok, there to remind us where the valorous ethos of HARD BOILED comes from. Fantasia is proud to welcome John Woo—whose work, as much much as anyone’s, inspired the very founding of the festival—and to honour him with a Career Achievement Award this year. We invite you all to join us as his action masterpiece explodes across the big screen once again! – Rupert Bottenberg