Young and Dangerous: The Prequel- -
Showcasing the earlier years of Chan Ho Nam (Nicholas Tse) and Chicken (Sam Lee), this prequel tells of their time during their willingness to follow Hung Hing's "Uncle Bee". The film co-stars Shu Qi and Daniel Wu.
The first three Young and Dangerousmovies were big hits with Hong Kong youngsters. Their chaotic stories reflected an uncertainty about the 1997 handover, as well as showing – in a dramatically enhanced form – the life of the territory’s teenage gangsters.
However, by parts four and five of the series, the magic had worn off. This Prequel was a valiant and partially successful attempt to recapture the initial appeal of the series. The film takes us back to 1989, a time when Ho-nam and his chums were naughty schoolboys whose rebellious instincts forced them off down the wrong path in life. As with the earlier movies, they’re not presented as evil lads, but misunderstood loners who stray into a life of crime because society rejects them. Of course, once there, these rebels without a cause rather seem to like the blood and guts of mob life – a theme for which the series has been criticised back in Hong Kong. The Prequel received the adults-only Category III rating in Hong Kong, where the authorities are justifiably worried about glamorising triad life. Reportedly, scenes were cut for distribution in other parts of Asia for the same reason.
Richard James Havis
Thanks to Far East Film Festival