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家法 (1979)
Law Don

Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 11/20/2002
Summary: More of the same

Alan's done this sort of role quite a few times.There's nothing much new here. Quite a lot of the material is lifted from or inspired by Puzo's The Godfather or dozens of other HK gangster films.

The directors throw in quite a few things to entertain. This includes a fairly impressive support cast, including a modest beginning for an incredibly young Simon Yam. Eddy Ko does his usual great work as the creepy head of a rival gang, and veteran fu star Chu Tit Wo oozes fierce loyalty as Tak. Also, there's plenty of the usual sensationalist crime-soap cliches, including a brief scene with some full frontal nudity, where one of the brothers is filmed for blackmail while having bondage sex with an underage girl. Plenty of scenes where gangster bosses (including Alan) toy with misbehaving underlings before slapping them around, sometimes leading to death. Several gambling scenes in casinos with trickery.

The one unusual feature is a long sequence about a horse race. HK is a society obsessed with gambling, and the way they follow the horses verges on the fanatical. Yet there are only a HK few films which contain such a long scene about horse racing as this one. This is a scene where the race may or may not be fixed, and the result will shame either one gang or the other. One of the best scenes in this film.

This film is not too bad, but certainly no classic.

Reviewer Score: 4

Reviewed by: SOJay
Date: 01/25/2001
Summary: Hong Kong Gangster action before the days of the New Wave

Okay, let me start by saying what Law Don isn't, it's not A Better Tomorrow and it's certainly not Young and Dangerous. Law Don has a lot of what you might expect from a 70's modern setting kung-fu picture (just not as much kung fu).
Alan Tang is great in the central lead and the film is mainly designed to highlight his strengths as an actor and in that sense the film delivers. The story is a less than perfect re-working of the Godfather pictures and Tang is nothing more than a thinly veiled Michael Corleone (Al Pacino in the Godfather) with a HK twist.
The action is plentiful, but nowhere near as stylish as the stuff you'd see in a John Woo classic (in fact the action greatly reminded me of another film from this era called Super Dragon's Dynamo). But, if your looking for something fun and undemanding, give it a try.