The Big Hit (1998)

Rating: ****
Release Date: 4/24/98
Producer: John Woo
Director: Kirk Wong
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Lou Diamond Philips, Avery Brooks, China Chow, Christina Applegate, Elliot Gould

Kirk Wong delivers his first American film with blistering authority. A wonderful and wacky combination of over-the-top Hong Kong style action, and quirky character driven humor aided by a hip and clever script. Mark Wahlberg is brilliant! I was skeptical at first, but he's got what it takes to make it BIG! Lou Diamond Philips plays the back stabbing psycho with flair (a la Gary Oldman), and Avery Brooks as a crime lord is perfect. Also, the babe who gets kidnapped (China Chow) is extremely exciting, and the chemistry that sparks between her and Wahlberg is erotic and immensely satisfying. The only downer about the film is that the kung fu sequences could have been a lot better - both Wahlberg and Philips have the physicality to pull it off, but the final result doesn't shine as brightly as it could have. Very fun, and very kooky.