Shock Wave 2 (Hong Kong, 2021)

Andy Lau is back in a thematic sequel to the hit 2017 action film, where the odds are against him.

Five years ago, a botched mission has resulted in bomb disposal officer Poon Sing-Fung losing his leg and enduring all sorts of physical therapy. Now retired from the force, Fung finds himself part of an organization called Vendetta, which is led by his childhood friend Ma. After a successful bombing in Hong Kong’s education bureau, Fung is tasked with placing a bomb at a local hotel. However, he is caught in the blast once again and has now woken up with amnesia.

Learning of the situation, members of the police force decide to play Fung against his one time cohorts by convincing him that he had been undercover. His former best friend Tung and contact officer Pong tell Fung he joined the team in an effort to expose them and regain his career as a police officer. However, only a select few are involved with this notion while Poon finds himself the chief suspect of the bombing. When he regains his memory, will Poon find his one shot at redemption or will it be too late?

2017’s Shock Wave was an absolute blast (pun intended) with Andy Lau’s maverick bomb disposal officer up against a band of mercenaries. This thematic sequel reunites Lau and director Herman Yau. However, this is a thematic sequel in which Lau plays another bomb disposal officer. However, we see the aftermath of a botched mission which leads him to being embarrassed at a police event due to his heroic effort thus putting him in a dangerous mission.

The film may bring the 1999 film Purple Storm to mind, as it involves an amnesiac protagonist who is duped into working for the good guys without knowing their true nature, which soon results in them questioning what is right. Sean Lau and Ni Ni are excellent as the officers who try to convince our hero Fung that he is actually working undercover so they stop the series of bombings that have rocked Hong Kong. In Lau’s case, he is Tung, Fung’s former best friend who tries to convince him to “rejoin” the force by staying as an undercover while Ni’s Pong, has a bit of a romantic interest in Fung due to a past memory, which tends to complicate matters involving the mission.

Tse Kwan-Ho makes for a sometimes over the top lead villain in Ma, aka “Maverick”, Fung’s childhood friend turned terrorist bomber Maverick as he is set to make Hong Kong his with his series of bombings. The action set pieces are quite enjoyable with former Jackie Chan Stunt Team leader Nicky Li in charge. Lau gets to do some brief close quarters combat in the film against the likes of a hotel security guard and against cops who suspect him of the bombings. The opening scene is a teaser to what is expected in the final action set piece and brings a sense of predictability. However, it doesn’t take away the film as a whole as this is a pretty good action film.

Shock Wave 2 is a wild ride of an action thriller with Andy Lau returning in top form with excellent support from Sean Lau and Ni Ni. Herman Yau scores another win in his excellent filmography with this sequel.

WFG RATING: A

Echelon Studios and Stonecutter Media presents a Universe Entertainment Ltd. production in association with Focus Films, Infinitus Entertainment, and Alibaba Media. Director: Herman Yau. Producers: Andy Lau, Alvin Lam, Esther Koo, and Calvin Choi. Writers: Herman Yau, Erica Li, and Eric Lee. Cinematography: Joe Chan. Editing: Azrael Cheung.

Cast: Andy Lau, Sean Lau, Ni Ni, Tse Kwan-Ho, Philip Keung, Ron Ng, Kenny Wong, Timothy Cheng, Timmy Hung, Ben Yuen.

The film will be released on Demand and on Digital on November 2.

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