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The Corruptor

VHS Tape
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

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Nick Chen (Chow Yun-Fat) is not your average New York cop. Working in Chinatown has its multifarious cultural nuances and its fair share of ubiquitous enticement, both of which are reflected in detective Chen's weary face. He had to get into bed with the highest echleons of the Chinese Mafia as a way of augmenting his own career, while maintaining a semblance of control over the dime-a-dozen hoods who proliferate on this turf. To make matters worse, he now has to break in rookie detective Danny Wallace (Mark Wahlberg), who has asked to be assigned to the Chinatown division. Apparently Wallace is infatuated with all things Chinese, or is suffering from "Yellow Fever," as his fellow colleagues would have us believe. Chen, not one to suffer fools gladly, takes young Wallace under his protective wing, oft-warning the shady powers of the neighborhood not to sink Danny into their sordid pool of corruption. But before he knows it, both he and Wallace are caught in a deadly ring of double-crosses, shady-dealings, murders, and car chases. And all of this under the suspicious eye of Internal Affairs.

Part Serpico and part Hard Boiled, this film seems at first to be a major departure from director James Foley's previous work. However, Foley has frequently revealed a keen eye and understanding for emotionally complex relationships, especially between teacher and pupil (Glengarry Glen Ross) or father and son (At Close Range). This movie is no different. In fact, Foley's meticulous attention to the relationship between the wise, morally burdened Chen, and the naïve, innocent Wallace morphs this otherwise tedious plot into a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Hats off to Chow Yun-Fat and Mark Wahlberg, whose sympathetic chemistry creates an authentic and deeply personal connection, a factor that proves crucial to the film's poignant, disturbing finale. --Jeremy Storey

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars If all bad cops could be this good! April 30 2004
I loved the confrantation that Danny Wallace had with his dad about the contemplation of what to do about turning in his partner Nick Chen .. I won't spoil the quote you have to take it in context of the scenario of the movie. What an impact it made in my life that what I do in my life will be what I live with. I don't know if I over looked the goings on with Nick Chen because after all he was Yun-Fat Chow or that his over looking Uncle Benny's activities was some how a kindness to help May a lost drug addict and prostitute unable to escape her fate he tries to be more then a cop in her heart. The entire movie was tastefully done, story line excellant, directed in a way to make you laugh, cry, sit at the edge of you chair during those action scenes. Not to mention the sound track subpurbly done. I have had always found Yun-Fat Chow a believable actor in all rolls he portray; this movie he stole my heart (more then in Anna and the King).. the ending must be seen to appreciate how to me he was a good cop, with admiration to the writer in whatever message he wanted to leave you at the end. If you thought Mark Wahlberg was exceptional in this roll you should see him in The Perfect Storm and never thought he would play such a sicko in Fear but had me convinced. Lady's don't judge all men by what goes on in this movie but be wise to it's message of common sense. It always amazes me when an actor can play his/her complete opposite. I look forward to watching more of both of these great actors movies. Don't wait to buy THE CORRUPTOR should it go out of print you will regret it! Well I think so. Thanks for listening - Bye. Would welcome your comments too.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wow! April 13 2004
I was really surprised by how good this movie is. I figured a straight-forward shoot-'em-up and some exotic intrigue was about all it would have going for it. The cover had the usual fatuous nonsense on it: "You can't play by the rules when there aren't any." Why is it 90% of video covers have a reformulation of the same stupid subtitle? Apparently there is some lucky guy out there is employed writing new, yet indistinguishable ways to either deny the existence of Rules/Boundaries/etc. or at least deny their applicability to some beautiful, well-armed people. Good for him.
Anyway, this movie definitely exceeded my expectations. Great direction, but most of all great performances from Chow-Yun Fat and Mark Wahlberg. Wahlberg's relationship with his father was fairly cliched, yet it still came across as believable. The various moral predicaments of the two cops were just as interesting and well-done as the fight scenes. There is one major chase scene, which I found silly after a while, since it gave the impression that there were absolutely no other police cars within ten miles of some maniac with an Uzi blowing away civilians.
But that is a nothing criticism. Really, the only sore spot was the FBI goonish guy, who was both tiresome and one-dimensional in comparison with the other characters. But on the main, an excellent action-thriller. Chow-Yun Fat wasn't limited by John Woo's formula this time around, and his chops definitel show as a result.
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4.0 out of 5 stars everyone has a secret March 27 2002
Format:VHS Tape
They say everyone has a secret. The Corruptor is a prime example of this saying because everyone in Chinatown is hiding something in this movie. Detective Nick Chen, played by international star Chow Yun-Fat, heads the Asian Crime Unit in his precinct. Chen is a decorated hero with many years on the force. He is also in the back pocket of Uncle Benny, the leader of the old-line gang in the city. Because of this he is fighting even harder to take down the Fukienese Dragons, a gang of young Chinese recently arrived to America. Adding to his problems Chen has a new cop in his unit, Mark Wahlberg plays Danny Wallace. Wallace is a rookie with his own secrets including a father who owes the Italian mob a large sum of money.
The Corruptor is fun! Any movie that starts off with an entire storefront exploding and the one "survivor" being gunned down as he comes out the door is bound to grab your attention. Many gunfights and chase scenes later you even realize there is a story here. Mark Wahlberg continues to improve as an actor though it is hard to think of him as anything other than "Marky Mark." Chow Yun-Fat is the main reason to see this movie. He was a star in China for many years before we were lucky enough to catch a glimpse of him. His English has improved immensely from his first American movie, The Replacement Killers, and his charisma is at the level that it always has been. When Chow is on the screen it is hard to watch others and it will definitely be interesting to see him in the remake of The King and I with Jodie Foster.
James Foley directed this movie. It's not for everyone but if movies like Hard-Boiled and The Killer entertained you then check out The Corruptor. It's worth it!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Two great performances in midless crime drama March 22 2002
In The Corruptor, rookie New York cop Danny Wallace gets assigned to the Chinatown section. It soon looks like he is in way over his head. He's the only Caucasian in a formerly all Chinese unit, and his fellow cops don't want him around. This includes his partner, Nick Chen. There is enough crime and violence in a single day in Chinatown to fill an entire season of the TV series Law and Order. Wallace doesn't have long to prove his worth in this sea of criminals and gang lords movie, but reality is utterly disregarded. Midway though The Corruptor, something dawned on me. The action isn't supposed to reflect reality. What has happened over the last two decades is that one of the greatest and purely American genres, the Western, went out of fashion. You couldn't pay the public to see one. Yet the power of the Western as an idea remained, and it reappeared in the form of these modern cops and robbers movies. So, when the bad guys are chased in their vehicles by the good guys, it's no different from when the outlaw gang rode into town. Shots would be fired, and it was up to the citizens to take cover. There were no rights to be read, no one to keep the law officers in line. People dropped like flies in those old Westerns. The differences were that fake blood didn't fly from their bodies, and the sound of the gunfire didn't explode in Dolby digital sound. From now on, I will tell myself that I am watching a 21st Century Western.
Mark Wahlberg and Yun-Fat Chow really do try their best to be professional throughout the movie, although they throw each other some knowing glances that probably have nothing to do with the script.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Chow Yun-Fat film so far, EXCELLENT PLOT
This movie has excellent plot and is not one of those mindless John Woo action films. Acutally, it is the ONLY John Woo films that has a good plot in addition to the usual good... Read more
Published on Feb. 27 2004 by thequickad
5.0 out of 5 stars Mindless Entertainment
This movie was just mindless entertainment. This isn't a bad thing, because it's fun to watch. It's pure action, and the plot isn't very important. Read more
Published on Dec 29 2002 by EJ
4.0 out of 5 stars Honestly, one of Chow Yun Fat's finest acting jobs.
I was really surprised at how good this film was. Chow Yun Fat was absolutely mesmerizing. Both he and Mark Wahlbergh create an unexpected chemistry between their two characters. Read more
Published on Dec 16 2002 by Mark Fojas
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better cop dramas out there
I loved this movie. Way better than the overblown and much-hyped Training Day, this movie has extreme subtlety and plays its hand well. Read more
Published on Oct. 7 2002 by Tarun Nagpal
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad Cop Film
I admit, I'm a little biased. I love cop flicks. This one wasn't too bad. It starts off with a bang, literally. A store in Chinatown blows up and the violence begins. Read more
Published on March 7 2002 by Simon Kwok
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting to watch
The Corruptor is an interesting movie.
However, it has a convoluted storyline that is almost as chaotic as Natural Born Killers yet has not been pulled off in as clean or... Read more
Published on Jan. 7 2002 by Xoandre
The special features on this dvd are great. Someone has worked long and hard to come up with an individual format and it really works, thoroughly enjoyable.
Published on Sept. 8 2001
4.0 out of 5 stars East meets west in an interesting mix of styles
This is a Hong Kong action flick with a distinct taste of the west. The movie starts off with a bombing and small store shoot-out that is right out of John Woo's stylebook but... Read more
Published on July 1 2001 by Howard Robert Marcy
1.0 out of 5 stars Just shooting and shooting and shoo-... BORING!
I only watched the beginning because it was so bad. It had so much bad language and it was just shooting and shooting and shooting and shooting and shooting! Read more
Published on June 26 2001
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