Movie Review – SPL (Sha Po Lang) – Awesome Fights!


Hong Kong Police Detective Chan has devoted his career to putting the notorious triad boss Wong Po behind bars. While escorting a witness with damning evidence of Wong Po’s wrong doing to court, the police van is rammed at high speed by a car driven by the ruthless assassin Jack. The wreck kills the witness and his wife, but spares the witness’ young daughter. Detective Chan is left with a piece of glass in the back of his head. When the glass is removed, doctors notice a tumor in Detective Chan’s brain. He doesn’t have long to live making Detective Chan all the more determined to bring down Wong Po.

Plenty have people have mentioned this movie, especially after I watched Dragon Tiger Gate (Loong Fu Moon) and found it fairly I see what they were talking about.

Donnie Yen can create amazing fight sequences and this movie is one hell of a testament to that.

It’s a fairly typical gangster vs cops HK movie, it’s dark and quickly paced and it’s not only about action, it’s also about consequences of your actions..

Sammo Hung plays an evil, sinister, crazed but cool mafia boss and he plays it amazingly well, no hint of humour or lovable Sammo there.

The fighting is spectacular, and some is not even choreographed, they were just told to go for it and it really shows!

Especially the fight in the alley between Donnie and Jacky Wu Jing, wow, amazing! During the making of the movie, Donnie actually broke 3 batons on Wu-jings head filming that sequence.

There’s a good mix of traditional martial arts and some UFC style grappling/ju-jitsu.

The finale between Donnie and Sammo is nothing short of spectacular.

Donny vs Sammo

If you haven’t watched this movie, I highly recommend it.

It’s fast paced, gripping and the action is fantastic.

SPL feels one of the olden time HK movies, when they used to be good, you know like A Better Tomorrow and that era, when HK movies were still explosive, gripping and exciting. The way this movie is put together is raw, the fight scenes aren’t slick, they are Ong Bak/Tom Yum Goong style bone-cruching, face cracking, blood splattering, like the guys on screen are really actually trying to kill each other.

I give it a face busting 8/10.




You can subscribe via e-mail to get my posts in your Inbox, or stalk me on numerous other platforms.

, , , , , , , , ,

11 Responses to Movie Review – SPL (Sha Po Lang) – Awesome Fights!

  1. Mossie`Ol Chin March 27, 2007 at 11:56 am #

    yes to everything you said and yes, Dragon Tiger Gate was really crap!!! and my take:

  2. whatalulu March 27, 2007 at 1:23 pm #

    SPL was like the best-est! after that, my “donnie yen…sigh…”ing was revived.
    did you watch the dvd copy? i saw it in the cinema when it was first released. later i bought the dvd, and to my disappointment, the ending was changed.
    what were the changes?
    think of the significance of samo hung’s wife and baby sitting in the car on the road below the building, and the ending where simon yam is standing alone facing the sea.

  3. jericho March 27, 2007 at 8:19 pm #

    U might want to check out “Fatal Contact” with Wu Jing as the main star. At least in this movie he is not a mute…..hehe

    Wu Jing was a Wushu champion and a former member of Beijing Wushu team where Jet Li is also a former member.

    Hope one day there might be a movie with Jet Li and Wu Jing fighting it out. 🙂

  4. Franco March 28, 2007 at 4:03 am #


    Came accross your blog while doing a bit of BlogExplosion Surfing. Just
    wanted to compliment you on your blog. Good job.



  5. James March 28, 2007 at 10:19 am #

    It’s a great movie. I think the ending was one of the most interesting I have ever seen.

  6. Z March 28, 2007 at 11:01 am #

    It never fails to amaze me how Sammo Hung can break moves like THAT with that tree trunk body of his.

    And Donnie Yen, hello hottie!!

  7. JJ March 28, 2007 at 12:47 pm #

    There is another good one came after SPL called “Dark Fist” (direct translation) by Wu Jing. Same action and excitement.

  8. Rev. Qelqoth March 28, 2007 at 9:48 pm #

    This looks like one worth watching!

  9. iamyuanwu April 4, 2007 at 4:20 pm #

    Sammo and Jackie Chan trained under the same master when they were young. Therefore the super-duper kung-fu moves.

  10. ShaolinTiger April 5, 2007 at 1:31 pm #

    Mossie`Ol Chin: Glad you agree!

    whatalulu: I was losing hope in Donnie too, really glad I watched this and got some renewed faith in HK movies. The cut end version is the Mainland China version, I watched the full version with the Karma twist.

    jericho: Sounds interesting, Wu-jing was awesome in SPL.

    Franco: Thanks Franco 🙂

    James: Yup, I was glad to see something different too.

    Z: I have to agree, wow he can move helluva fast for a fattie.

    JJ: Will try and look for that too.

    Rev. Qelqoth: It is, don’t miss out!

Keep up with me on Social Media by following me below - Thanks so much!