A Better Tomorrow has always been hailed as a milestone in
Hong Kong cinema. This book describes the different responses to
the movie in Hong Kong and later in its reception worldwide, which
paved the way for the promotion of John Woo and Chow Yun-fat to
their current prominence in Hollywood.
Fang examines the different notions of the genre of action cinema
in Asian and Western film industries. She tracks the connections
between ying shung pian, or "hero" movie, the term by which Woo's
film became famous in Hong Kong, and the spectacle of violence
emphasized in the term "heroic bloodshed," the category in which
the film was known in the West. Finally, she concludes with a
discussion of the status of the film and its huge success in the
current globalized industry.
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