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Who Is Undercover (2014) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version) Blu-ray Region A

Tony Leung Ka Fai (Actor) | Gillian Chung (Actor) | Lin Chi Ling (Actor) | Vivian Woo (Actor)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

The Sino-Japanese War – especially its espionage stories – has provided a wealth of exciting adventures for the big screen. Director Fan Jian Hui brings a compelling story of self-sacrifice in times of war with Who is Undercover, an Agatha Christie-esque mystery set in 1930s Shanghai. Five women (Lin Chiling, Gillian Chung, Meng Ting Yi, Su Jin and Liu Lujia) have been arrested and kept in a prison because one of them is suspected to be "Ace," a core figure in the resistance movement. As the five women are tortured and played against each other for the identity of "Ace," a resistance fighter (Tony Leung Ka Fai) risks his life to rescue the women from captivity.
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Technical Information

Product Title: Who Is Undercover (2014) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version) 王牌 (2014) (Blu-ray) (香港版) 王牌 (2014) (Blu-ray) (香港版) 王牌 (2014) (Blu-ray) (香港版) Who Is Undercover (2014) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version)
Also known as: 誰是卧底之王牌 谁是卧底之王牌
Artist Name(s): Tony Leung Ka Fai (Actor) | Gillian Chung (Actor) | Lin Chi Ling (Actor) | Vivian Woo (Actor) | Christopher Lee (Actor) | Su Jin (Actor) | Meng Ting Yi (Actor) | Kent Cheng (Actor) | Zhao Yang (Actor) 梁 家輝 (Actor) | 鍾欣桐 (Actor) | 林志玲 (Actor) | 鄔君梅 (Actor) | 李 銘順 (Actor) | 蘇 瑾 (Actor) | 蒙亭宜 (Actor) | 鄭則仕 (Actor) | 趙陽 (Actor) 梁 家辉 (Actor) | 锺欣桐 (Actor) | 林志玲 (Actor) | 邬君梅 (Actor) | 李 铭顺 (Actor) | 苏 瑾 (Actor) | 蒙亭宜 (Actor) | 郑则仕 (Actor) | 赵阳 (Actor) 梁家輝 (レオン・カーファイ) (Actor) | 鍾欣桐 (ジリアン・チョン) (Actor) | 林志玲 (リン・チーリン) (Actor) | 鄔君梅(ヴィヴィアン・ウー) (Actor) | 李銘順 (クリストファー・リー) (Actor) | 蘇瑾(スー・ジン) (Actor) | Meng Ting Yi (Actor) | 鄭則仕(ケント・チェン) (Actor) | Zhao Yang (Actor) Tony Leung Ka Fai (Actor) | Gillian Chung (Actor) | Lin Chi Ling (Actor) | Vivian Woo (Actor) | Christopher Lee (Actor) | Su Jin (Actor) | Meng Ting Yi (Actor) | Kent Cheng (Actor) | Zhao Yang (Actor)
Director: Fan Jian Hui 范 建會 范 建会 Fan Jian Hui Fan Jian Hui
Blu-ray Region Code: A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?
Release Date: 2015-05-22
Language: Mandarin
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
Place of Origin: China
Picture Format: [HD] High Definition What is it?
Sound Information: 7.1, Dolby TrueHD
Disc Format(s): Blu-ray, 25 GB - Single Layer
Screen Resolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080 progressive scan)
Video Codecs: AVC (MPEG-4 Part 10)
Rating: IIB
Duration: 92 (mins)
Publisher: CN Entertainment Ltd.
Package Weight: 100 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1039497985

Product Information

The story depicts th ebiggest unsettled case in the Chinese spy war, set in the 1930s, when “White Terror” threatened Shanghai. During a series of investigations on a key Communist Party member code-named “Trump”, Kuomingtang arrests a group of suspects with the help of a confidential informant. Through savage torture on these suspects including an art teacher 9Starred by Chiling Lin), a nightclub owner (starred by Chiling Lin), a nightclub owner (starred by Gillian Chung) and other three ladies, the secret seems to be unveiled soon. However, another tense game also ensues at the same time. The rescue team led by the chief (starred by Tony Leung Ka Fai) fails to protect trump’s identity. Who’s the undercover? Who’s the real Trump? Decades later, when the mystery of lies and alibis, betrayal and loyalty still remains, the art teacher as the only survivor repudiates all the previous depositions and realizes the astonishing truth….
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Who Is Undercover (2014) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version)"

July 27, 2015

This professional review refers to Who Is Undercover (2014) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
"The Sino-Japanese War and the struggle between the Kuomintang government and the communists have long been popular backdrops in Chinese cinema and television, being used to play out nationalism-themed tales of love, heroism and espionage. As its title suggests, Who is Undercover focuses on the latter, being a spy mystery revolving around a group of imprisoned women, one of whom may or may not be a secret communist agent. The film is the first from director Fan Jian Hui, who gathered an impressive collection of top actresses to play the unfortunate ladies in question, namely Lin Chiling, Gillian Chung, Meng Ting Yi, Su Jin and Liu Lujia, with support from popular Hong Kong actor Tony Leung Ka Fai in the lead male role.

The film begins in 1934 in Shanghai, with the Kuomintang government rounding up a group of suspected female rebel agents after an incident in a tea house assumed to have been a communist operation gone wrong. Desperate to try and uncover the identity of the mysterious ‘Joker’ before they have to let the prisoners go, the government secret police set about torturing the women in an effort to make them give up their secrets. Psychological as well as physical torment comes to the fore as the five are played off against each other, and as it gradually becomes clear which of them really are spies it equally becomes obvious that there’s a traitor in their midst. Meanwhile on the outside, a veteran communist resistance leader (Tony Leung Ka Fai) attempts to free the captives while keeping Joker hidden.

The film which immediately comes to mind when watching Who is Undercover is Chen Kuo Fu and Gao Qun Shu’s accomplished 2009 spy drama The Message, to which director Fan Jian Hui clearly owes a considerable debt. Indeed, though not officially a remake, Who is Undercover certainly comes close to The Message, lifting its plot, themes and even some scenes from the earlier film. Thankfully, Fan proves an efficient copycat, and the film moves along briskly and manages to hold the interest despite its lack of originality, with plenty of twists, turns and revelations. For the most part, the film does make for taut and occasionally exciting viewing, Fan successfully keeping the viewer guessing as to the various true identities of the women and milking their confinement for a respectable amount of tension. A welcome edge is added by the fact that the film gets pretty gruesome at times, packing in many graphic torture scenes, including fingernail pulling and other nastiness, as well as some (CGI) blood soaked battles and shootouts.

Things are undermined by an exposition and melodrama heavy final act however, which at times gives the film the air of a Chinese WWII television war soap opera, with the same level of nationalism and cheap tugs at the heartstrings as it builds to what for many will be a muddled conclusion. Thanks to this the film is undeniably uneven, all the more so due to a sketchy set of characters that the viewer never really comes to care about, each having clearly been written and manipulated for narrative rather than emotional impact. While Fan’s workmanlike direction doesn’t really impress, the film’s production values are solid, and he does succeed in getting good performances from his big name cast. Also, his actresses are all on fine form and manage to elevate their characters at least a little, if not quite to the point of believability. There’s something to be said for seeing such a collection of famous faces being put through the wringer, and Lin Chiling and Gillian Chung in particular get plenty of chances to chew the scenery and wail piteously in scenes which are likely to provide a fair amount of unintentional amusement for some viewers.

As a result, despite its various failings and liberal borrowing from The Message, Who is Undercover makes for a fun hour and a half of espionage themed hysteria. Boosted by its cast, a decently handled suspense plot and some surprisingly harsh violence, there’s plenty here to enjoy for fans of Chinese spy films or anyone not expecting too much.

by James Mudge -"

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