Director Chen Musheng's posthumous work "Rage: Serious Case" received 583 million yuan in the box office and praised by countless fans, but the careful audience found that, except for Nicholas Tse, the average age of several leading actors on the screen is over 60 years old.

Exciting fights can hardly conceal the withering of Hong Kong action movies

  On July 30, the movie "Rage: Serious Case" was released in the mainland. The film was released for 12 days and earned a box office of 583 million yuan.

Director Chen Musheng died prematurely in August 2020 at the age of 58, which has caused countless fans to sigh and remember.

Although the marketing of the film focuses on "Director Chen Musheng's posthumous work", as far as the quality of the film is concerned, the film can be described as an excellent work of Hong Kong action films in recent years.

In addition to praise, many viewers also sighed that the average age of several starring actors in the film was over 60 years old. Even the youngest Nicholas Tse was 41 years old. Hong Kong action actors have collectively entered the "old age".

The once star-studded Hong Kong action movies have already seen a lack of talent in terms of talents, and behind the decline of talents, the reasons reflected are even more complex and diverse.

The action stars of the earshun year are still desperate

  As one of the leading figures in Hong Kong action movies, Donnie Yen plays the role of Chief Inspector of Crime Squad Chen Chongbang in the film. He used 18 martial arts and applied various techniques of modern integrated combat to the film, except for various side kicks. In addition to flying legs, difficult movements such as shoulder throws, bare twists, and round kicks were done cleanly and neatly. Especially in the scene where he and the black boss fight from upstairs to downstairs, the strokes are hearty, and it makes people feel like Back to the golden age of Hong Kong action movies in the 1980s and 1990s.

At the end of the film, he overpowered the big villain played by Nicholas Tse with the "cross solid" trick in Japanese judo.

It is hard to imagine that the 58-year-old Donnie Yen can make so many difficult moves.

  In addition to Donnie Yen, the supporting actors in the film include Lu Liangwei, Ren Dahua, Lu Huiguang and Lin Guobin.

The 65-year-old Lu Liangwei was also one of the main actors in Hong Kong action movies in the 1980s and 1990s. His masterpieces such as "Shanghai Beach" and "Lie Hao" have become classics.

In this film, the appearance of him and the 66-year-old Ren Dahua undoubtedly played a nostalgic role.

  It is worth mentioning that Lin Guobin and Lu Huiguang.

The 61-year-old Lin Guobin was the first member of the "Martial Arts Class". After leaving the Martial Arts Class, he transformed from a martial artist to an actor.

He has filmed "The King of Destruction" with Stephen Chow, and "Die Hard" with Jet Li, both of which are villains.

The 62-year-old Lu Huiguang was previously a Muay Thai champion. After being discovered by Jackie Chan, he became a martial arts actor.

His movements are clean and neat, especially the "one-word horse" kung fu, which is amazing.

In the film, he fights with Donnie Yen from upstairs to downstairs, still sturdy and vigorous.

Recalling the highlight moments of Hong Kong action movies

  The earliest action star in Hong Kong was Guan Dexing.

Born in 1905, he was an actor of Cantonese opera earlier, and he also practiced martial arts and worked as a martial arts coach.

Since 1949, he has starred in a series of "Huang Feihong" movies, with as many as 87 movies.

Another villain who often appears in Guan Dexing's "Huang Feihong" series is Shi Jian.

Then Bruce Lee was born in the early 1970s. Although he only made five films including "Dragon Fighting and Tiger Fighting" and "Big Brother Tangshan", his influence has transcended national boundaries.

  Wang Yu, 4 years younger than Bruce Lee, became a hit in 1967 when he filmed "One Armed Sword".

He, David Jiang and Ti Lung were the most popular action stars in Hong Kong in the 1960s and 1970s.

In 1978, with the release of "Drunken Fist" starring Jackie Chan, Hong Kong action movies ushered in a prosperous period. The "Seven Little Fortunes" composed of Sammo Hung, Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao, and Yuan Hua began to take the stage.

At this time, gunfight action movies gradually replaced the traditional kung fu action movies.

In 1986, "The True Colors of Heroes" starring Chow Yun-fat, Leslie Cheung, Ti Lung and others was released, and it was all the rage.

Subsequently, a large number of similar gunfight action movies emerged.

  In the early 1990s, Jet Li and Tsui Hark collaborated on a series of "Once Upon a Time" movies. At this time, Hong Kong action movies reached their heyday.

In addition to stars such as Jackie Chan, Chow Yun-fat, Jet Li, Wan Ziliang, Li Xiuxian, Ti Lung, etc., there are also many capable golden supporting roles in the field of action movies in Hong Kong.

  In 1994, Chen Jiashang's "Heroes of the Martial Arts", the audience not only saw Jet Li's lightning-fast skill, but also the Japanese officer Fujita Tsuyoshi played by Zhou Billy's kung fu.

Zhou Billy once won the World Light Welterweight Free Fighting Championship in 1985, and is considered to be the "best hitman" among all Hong Kong action actors so far.

  Donnie Yen played against Jet Li, who was at his peak in "Once Upon a Time" in 1992 filming "Once Upon a Time: A Boy Strengthens"; Qian Xiaohao's fight scene with Jet Li in "Tai Chi Zhang Sanfeng" directed by Yuan Heping in 1993 has been hit. Movie fans talked about it.

  At the same time, mainland actors Yu Rongguang and Zhao Wenzhuo also came to Hong Kong to develop during this period, leaving wonderful action scenes in a large number of movies.

The decline of action movies and the fault of action stars

  After entering 2000, Hong Kong's film market began to slump, and the power of Hollywood movies began to appear.

Especially after Jackie Chan, Chow Yun-fat and others began to develop in Hollywood, the Hong Kong film market entered a downturn.

There are not many Hong Kong directors who can persist in starting work during this period. Therefore, in Wang Jing and Johnnie To’s movies, there are often action actors, and these actors are also old faces.

  Hong Kong films practice a star system, and the shrinking market prevents investors from daring to take risks and employ newcomers.

During this period, the mainland movie market has not yet started.

In 2003, actor Wu Jing went to Hong Kong to develop, but he did not find more opportunities.

In "Breaking the Wolf" filmed in 2005, he had a confrontation with Donnie Yen in the alley. Wu Jing wielded a dagger and wrestled with Donnie Yen holding a swinging stick. This confrontation has become a classic, but In the whole film, Wu Jing does not have many roles.

Another important reason for Wu Jing’s development in Hong Kong is the decline of traditional domestic kungfu movies. The previous martial arts performances with hard bridges and horses have not attracted the interest of the audience. The era of film and television dramas such as "Heroes Fearless" and "Chen Zhen" is gone forever.

  With the outbreak of the mainland movie market, Hong Kong actors and directors have moved northward.

After 2010, well-known directors such as Tsui Hark, Liu Weiqiang, Wang Jing, Lin Chaoxian, and Qiu Litao who made action movies gradually found their place.

At the same time, action stars like Jackie Chan and Donnie Yen began to appear more on the mainland screen.

  On December 29, 2018, Lin Lingdong passed away. This action director, who is as famous as Wu Yusen, once shot "Prison Storm" and other masterpieces.

Now, Director Johnnie To rarely shoots films, and Wu Yusen has also encountered "unacceptable" in the mainland market.

As for actors, Jet Li hardly appeared on the screen.

Sammo Hung often appears in the news with "in a wheelchair" as the prefix.

More Hong Kong action actors have been unemployed.

Where are Hong Kong's future action superstars

  As the former "Oriental Hollywood", does Hong Kong have any hope of revival?

The answer is not optimistic.

  This time, 41-year-old Nicholas Tse played the fierce bandit Qiu Gangao in the film. His professionalism and acting skills have been well received by many audiences. Even Jackie Chan considers him "the future star of Hong Kong action movies."

But to be honest, as far as the completion of the action is concerned, standing in front of the martial arts champion Donnie Yen, Nicholas Tse's movement strength and fighting skills are still a bit green, and there is no such thing as Wu Jing and Donnie Yen in "Slaying the Wolf". .

After all, Nicholas Tse is not a martial artist. There is still a lot of gap between the stretch and strength of his movements and professional athletes. Although the film can be made up for with editing skills, it cannot make up for the overall feeling.

  In its heyday, in addition to local action film talents such as the "Seven Little Fortunes" and "Yuan Jiaban", Hong Kong also absorbed a large number of foreign talents, such as Wang Yu, Jet Li, Yu Rongguang, Donnie Yen, Wu Jing, etc. However, with the shrinking of the Hong Kong market, in nearly 20 years, Hong Kong has never cultivated a star who has made achievements in the field of action.

  Nowadays, movies are pursuing large-scale production, with a large investment of several hundred million yuan. There is no room for any mistakes. The market has no chance for new actors and actresses to try and make mistakes.

Jackie Chan once lamented that among so many children in his "family class", so far, he has not found an action actor who can take on a major role.

But on the other hand, the 67-year-old Jackie Chan is still the leading actor in his movies. Even the villain in the movie, not a foreign star, or a well-known domestic action actor, is the biggest newcomer who can show his face in Jackie Chan movies. glory.

  The decline of talents in action films in Hong Kong is due to both the times and the shortage of talent reserves, but the most important thing is that the Hong Kong market is no longer enough to support the current movie box office volume.

From 2017 to 2019, none of the top ten films in Hong Kong's annual box office were Hong Kong films, and Hong Kong films are no longer the favorites of the audience.

  In this way, the future of Hong Kong action movies and the revival of talents can only be left to time!

Our reporter Wang Jinyue