Arya's In-Flight Asian Film Festival

tripletap

Triple Tap
Director: Tung-Shing Yee
Hong Kong

Triple Tap first starts with a pseudo passing of the torch as Daniel Wu, director Derek Yee's long-time collaborator, breaks the record at a shooting competition, finishing the course with a cool double tap shot. His pride is short-lived, as Louis Koo (who previously had a smaller role in Protégé) waltz through and dominates with a triple tap, solidifying his position as Yee's new leading man. Or is he?

The plot breaks in when Koo accidentally stumbles upon an armed robbery on his drive back to the office. To save a traffic officer's life, he busts out his competition gun and kills all the robbers save for one, with deadly accuracy. This is when Wu steps back into the picture, arresting Koo for unlawful use of a firearm, an unpopular decision since he's hailed as a hero even as he's marched into trial. We can sense a rivalry brewing, but there's no reason yet, as they mutually respect each other and each believe they're doing the right thing. There soon will be, though, as Koo is hiding something that would rock that balance.

What starts out as a very intriguing court room thriller that bravely shoves firearm safety and gun control issues to the forefront of its narrative suddenly switches premise halfway and becomes a most tedious kind of cat-and-mouse thriller. Yee seems to do okay when he wrings out his own small, gritty crime stories like in One Nite in Mongkok and Protégé, but shoots himself in the foot when he goes broad and self-important, as is the case with his last film, the embarrassing Jackie Chan starrer The Shinjuku Incident, as well as here.

Triple Tap then further disappoints by committing the awful sin of lying to the audience. In the film's final moments, it replays the sequence that kickstarts the movie, but it turns out that there are moments that were left out the first time. This isn't just a case of sly misdirection; it's blatantly lying to the audience. Instead of an unreliable narrator, we got an unreliable editor, who assembled the sequence differently to have two different outcomes, just to get a "gotcha" out of the audience. That's not a twist. That's called trolling.

US release unknown.



Feb
05
2011
Arya Ponto • Contributor

As former Editor of JPP, Arya likes to entertain peeps with his thoughts on pop culture, when he's not busy watching Battle Royale for the 200th time. He lives in Brooklyn with a comic book collection that's always the most daunting thing to move with, and writes for Artboiled.com.

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