SO CLOSE begins as an excellent example of what a martial arts action film should be. It’s full of slick moves, quick cuts, and nasty surprises for hapless victims who smile smugly until the tables are irrevocably turned on them. As satisfying as all that is, writer Jeff Lau has added another dimension to director Cory Yuen’s action mix and come up with a film as complex as the fight choreography and just as satisfying.
I don’t want to give you the wrong idea. There is no stinting on imaginative ways to wreak mayhem, as evidenced by the first set piece in which a couture-clad angel, a self-styled computer angel to be exact, decked out in white right down to her high heels that redefine the concept of spike, takes out a tycoon who got where he is in very bad ways. It’s clever, it’s quick, it defies gravity, and the bad guy sees it coming just long enough to regret it as our angel, Lynn (Qi Shu), makes her daring escape with the help of sister Sue (Vicki Zhao), who’s back at a sort of mission control that lets her manipulate pretty much anything that plugs into the grid.
But our angel and her sister aren’t do-gooders. No, they’re assassins for hire, and
The characters are written with a believable emotional life, even if the backstory of murdered parents and lost friends totters on the edge of melodrama. The interaction of Shu and Zhao has the ebb and flow of sibling tensions with parrying that is almost as interesting as the martial arts displays, what with the arguments being over older sister Lynn not allowing Sue to take on a hit job herself rather than something as mundane as letting her borrow the car. And the jealously resulting from