Dante Lam is imo one of the top five action directors in the world. In this film, he is perfection. It will blow your mind how he creates these explosive scenes as if you were right there, flinching amidst the action. That final rescue scene, visually, has to be the best I have ever seen. I feel slow-mo shots are for amateurs and so 1980's, but here they worked impeccably, and made that final rescue scene, one I will forever have etched in my mind. Simply perfection, stunning and explosive. Wow, Lam nailed it, and the entire rest of this film. Then add the insanely amazing cinematography, stunning special and visual effects, and this is better than most A-list big budget Hollywood blockbusters. Everything from the training and rescues, makes firefighter training seem like a walk in the park. Casting was excellent, and the score and soundtrack top notch. My only issue was the excessive melodramatics and the "parent and child" subplot. I didn't mind the romance part, but even with the excellent pacing, the 139 min runtime would have been more enjoyable, and less of an unnecessary emotional roller-coaster, without that subplot, and thus shaved at least 20-30 minutes, leaving us with more action than we can handle. The witty and sharp humor was good, but cheesy in this type of film, especially when it came from kids. I guess this is what happens when you have 3 writers collaborating - Wrong Size Man... errrm, darn auto-correct... I meant Wong Sze Man, Tan Yuli and Yaqing Zhi. Nevertheless, today I learned to respect the search and rescue teams, who have been trained better than Navy Seals (obviously minus the combat training), and thoroughly enjoyed this gem by Lam. It's a well deserved 9/10 from me.
A rescue unit within the Chinese Coast Guard are forced to overcome their personal differences to resolve a crisis.
February 11, 2021