This month, Louis Koo 古天乐 has dominated the theatres with three Chinese movies, League of Gods 封神传奇, Line Walker 使徒行者 and Call of Heroes 危城. Successive release of these movies together may be coincidental but it is definitely reflective of Koo’s highly appraised professionalism and acting.
In League of Gods, Koo played a loyal general to Daji (played by Fan BingBing 范冰冰) and later transformed into an intimidating warrior who risked his all against the protagonists. Despite dominance of excessive visual effects, Koo exhibited great acting to portray the firmness of a commanding general.
In his second movie, Line Walker, Koo starred alongside partner Nick Cheung 张家辉 as elite members of an international triad. Adapted from the 2014 Hong Kong drama of the same title, both are entangled in a web of deceit when the police began to establish links from an unidentifiable undercover police of the codename Blackjack. Yet just as the police closed in to reveal the undercover’s identity, they were puzzled by abrupt appearance of another anonymous individual claiming to be Blackjack too.
Joined by veteran actor Francis Ng 吴镇宇 and actress Charmaine Sheh 佘诗曼, the plot was meticulously written to keep the audience baffled by the unfolding events and the true identity of Blackjack. Personally, I enjoyed the numerous duologues among Koo, Cheung and Ng. These scenes gave me goosebumps as they portrayed their characters beautifully down to the finest details of a faint smile or glance. Rest assured, Koo’s character exhibited traits of great loyalty, chivalry and deep camaraderie with Cheung’s.
On the other hand, in his most recent movie – Call of Heroes, Koo may have just delivered a jaw-dropping performance bound to send shivers down ones’ spines. As a young psychopathic commander, Koo brought out his dark side to depict the character Cao Shaolin and his enjoyment to killing.
Call of Heroes was set in the post-dynasty era in China as warlords rose to power against the government. In particular, warlord General Cao’s son, Cao Shaolin (played by Koo) terrorized citizens with his ruthlessness and addiction to kill. As he began his colonisation into PuCheng, he found himself against an unyielding sheriff Yang Kenan (played by Sean Lau 刘青云) who sought to uphold justice against Cao.
Brace yourself for dazzling fighting stunts as Director Benny Chan teamed up with Sammo Hung 洪金宝 as Stunt Director. Starring Eddie Peng 彭于晏, Wu Jing 吴京 and Yolanda Yuan 袁泉, the action-packed movie enhances the beauty of traditional martial arts fighting with meticulously planned weaponry to develop individuality in each character and impressive coordinated stunts. Equipped with a golden carved gun, Koo’s character had much fewer fighting scenes compared to Lau and Peng. However, his performance was simply breathtaking as every expression or move made was sufficiently powerful to evoke intense feeling of fear and distress. One of the most epic scene included a staged suicide by Cao as proof of his importance to Yang and the citizens of PuCheng.
Take a pick to catch Louis Koo as the good or the bad this August! Line Walker and Call of Heroes are out in theatres.