films seen
35
average score
2.64*
nationality
China - 74 years old
status
Alive and kicking
more info

Hong Kong ambassador and undisputed king of gun-fu cinema. Woo is also one of the few Hong Kong directors who managed to cross over to Hollywood. If you're in the mood for some kick-ass action, Woo has you covered.

The good stuff

Face/Off

by John Woo
Specifics
USA [1997] - 138m
Genre
Sci-fi, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
4.0*/5.0*
Face/Off poster

The Killer

by John Woo
Also known as
Dip Huet Seung Hung
Specifics
Hong Kong [1989] - 111m
Genre
Drama, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
4.0*/5.0*
The Killer poster

Reign of Assassins

by Chao-bin Su, John Woo
Also known as
Jianyu
Specifics
China [2010] - 117m
Genre
Martial Arts
More info on
rating
4.0*/5.0*
toplist position
Reign of Assassins poster

If you're looking for a quality martial arts epic, look no further because this film has everything to quench your thirst.

Hard Boiled

by John Woo
Also known as
Lat Sau San Taam
Specifics
Hong Kong [1992] - 128m
Genre
Action, Crime
More info on
rating
4.0*/5.0*
toplist position
Hard Boiled poster

John Woo's gun-fu/heroic bloodshed masterpiece. The balance between the melodrama and action is perfect here (read very little of the former, tons of the latter), the acting talent is tremendous, the action scenes are simply baffling. The second hour is an almost endless barrage of superbly shot and choreographed gun fights, by far one of the best pieces of film in Woo's rich and varied oeuvre. An epic film, even 30 years later.

Solid pieces

Red Cliff: Part II

by John Woo
Also known as
Chi Bi Part II: Jue Zhan Tian Xia
Specifics
Japan, Hong Kong [2009] - 142m
Genre
Drama, Action, War, History
More info on
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Red Cliff: Part II poster

Heroes Shed No Tears

by John Woo
Also known as
Ying Xiong Wu Lei
Specifics
Hong Kong [1986] - 82m
Genre
Drama, Action, War
More info on
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Heroes Shed No Tears poster

Run Tiger, Run

by John Woo
Also known as
Liang Zhi Lao Hu
Specifics
Hong Kong [1985] - 91m
Genre
Comedy, Fantasy, Family
More info on
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Run Tiger, Run poster

Laughing Times

by John Woo
Also known as
Hua Ji Shi Dai
Specifics
Hong Kong, Taiwan [1981] - 101m
Genre
Comedy, Drama, Action
More info on
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Laughing Times poster

The inoffensive

Manhunt

by John Woo
Also known as
Zhuibu
Specifics
Hong Kong, China [2017] - 106m
Genre
Action, Thriller
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Manhunt poster

Manhunt feels like the remnant of a great film that died on the editing table. It's so incredibly hasty that it's like watching a 105 minute highlight reel. Some wooly English dialogue doesn't help either, luckily Woo still shoots a mean action scene and there's no time to get bored.

The Crossing 2

by John Woo
Also known as
Taiping Lun - Bian
Specifics
Hong Kong, China [2015] - 131m
Genre
Drama, Romance
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
The Crossing 2 poster

The Crossing

by John Woo
Also known as
Tai Ping Lun
Specifics
Hong Kong, USA [2014] - 129m
Genre
Drama, Romance
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
The Crossing poster

Red Cliff

by John Woo
Also known as
Chi Bi
Specifics
Japan, Hong Kong [2008] - 148m
Genre
Drama, Action, War, Adventure
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Red Cliff poster

Once a Thief

by John Woo
Also known as
Zong Heng Si Hai
Specifics
Hong Kong [1991] - 108m
Genre
Comedy, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Once a Thief poster

Bullet in the Head

by John Woo
Also known as
Die Xue Jie Tou
Specifics
Hong Kong [1990] - 136m
Genre
Drama, Action, Thriller, Crime, War
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Bullet in the Head poster

Just Heroes

by John Woo, Wu Ma
Also known as
Yi Dan Qun Ying
Specifics
Hong Kong [1989] - 97m
Genre
Drama, Action, Crime
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Just Heroes poster

A Better Tomorrow

by John Woo
Also known as
Ying Hung Boon Sik
Specifics
Hong Kong [1986] - 95m
Genre
Drama, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
A Better Tomorrow poster

The Time You Need a Friend

by John Woo
Also known as
Xiao Jiang
Specifics
Hong Kong, Taiwan [1984] - 91m
Genre
Drama
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
The Time You Need a Friend poster

To Hell with the Devil

by John Woo
Also known as
Mo Deng Tian Shi
Specifics
Hong Kong [1981] - 88m
Genre
Comedy, Fantasy, Horror
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
To Hell with the Devil poster

From Riches to Rags

by John Woo
Also known as
Qian Zuo Guai
Specifics
Hong Kong [1980] - 101m
Genre
Comedy, Action, Adventure
More info on
rating
3.0*/5.0*
From Riches to Rags poster

Worthy but flawed

Plain Jane to the Rescue

by John Woo
Also known as
Ba Cai Lin Ya Zhen
Specifics
Hong Kong [1982] - 86m
Genre
Comedy, Action
More info on
rating
2.5*/5.0*
Plain Jane to the Rescue poster

Last Hurrah For Chivalry

by John Woo
Also known as
Hao Xia
Specifics
Hong Kong [1979] - 106m
Genre
Drama, Action
More info on
rating
2.5*/5.0*
Last Hurrah For Chivalry poster

Countdown in Kung Fu

by John Woo
Also known as
Shao Lin Men
Specifics
Hong Kong [1976] - 95m
Genre
Drama, Action
More info on
rating
2.5*/5.0*
Countdown in Kung Fu poster

The Young Dragons

by John Woo
Also known as
Tie Han Rou Qing
Specifics
Hong Kong [1974] - 95m
Genre
Action
More info on
rating
2.5*/5.0*
The Young Dragons poster

Dubious filler

Wind Talkers

by John Woo
Also known as
Windtalkers
Specifics
USA [2002] - 134m
Genre
Drama, Action, War
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Wind Talkers poster

Mission: Impossible 2

by John Woo
Specifics
USA, Germany [2000] - 123m
Genre
Action, Thriller, Adventure
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Mission: Impossible 2 poster

Blackjack

by John Woo
Specifics
Canada, USA [1998] - 112m
Genre
Comedy, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Blackjack poster

Broken Arrow

by John Woo
Specifics
USA [1996] - 108m
Genre
Action, Thriller, Adventure
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Broken Arrow poster

A Better Tomorrow II

by John Woo
Also known as
Ying Hung Boon Sik II
Specifics
Hong Kong [1987] - 105m
Genre
Drama, Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
A Better Tomorrow II poster

Money Crazy

by John Woo
Also known as
Fa Qian Han
Specifics
Hong Kong [1977] - 92m
Genre
Comedy, Action, Crime
More info on
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Money Crazy poster

Plain forgettable

All the Invisible Children

by Mehdi Charef, Emir Kusturica, Spike Lee, Kátia Lund, Jordan Scott, Ridley Scott, Stefano Veneruso, John Woo
Specifics
France, Italy [2005] - 124m
Genre
Drama
More info on
rating
1.5*/5.0*
All the Invisible Children poster

Princess Chang Ping

by John Woo
Also known as
Dinu Hua
Specifics
Hong Kong [1976] - 102m
Genre
Romance, Musical
More info on
rating
1.5*/5.0*
Princess Chang Ping poster

John Woo doing Chinese opera sounds intriguing, but the result is mostly just grating and tiresome. The film looks nice enough and the romantic plot is sufficient, but the music is ever-present and did get on my nerves after a while. Unless you're a big fan of Chinese opera, or a Woo completist, you might think twice about watching this one.

The Dragon Tamers

by John Woo
Also known as
Nu Zi Tai Quan Qun Ying Hui
Specifics
Hong Kong [1975] - 107m
Genre
Action
More info on
rating
1.5*/5.0*
The Dragon Tamers poster

John Woo took a rather hesitant start to his career, but that is not uncommon for a Hong Kong director. The Dragon Tamers is a basic martial arts film that features one of two decent fight scenes, but fails on pretty much every other level. Woo's signature is also completely absent, but that shouldn't come as a surprise.

The plot is nothing special. A righteous martial art students vows to stop a criminal organization from taking over the martial schools in Korea, but before he can make a real difference he needs to be humbled first. If you've seen a couple of these oldskool martial arts flick, you've probably seen this plot a thousand times before.

The actors are mediocre and the fight choreographies are tame, especially when you compare them to Shaw Bros films from that time. The drama is very poor and the first half doesn't nearly have enough fight scenes to overcome that. Luckily the ending is quite action-packed, but it's not good enough to save this film.

Big nopes

Paycheck

by John Woo
Specifics
Canada, USA [2003] - 119m
Genre
Sci-fi, Action, Mystery, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
1.0*/5.0*
Paycheck poster

Once a Thief

by John Woo
Specifics
Canada [1996] - 92m
Genre
Action, Thriller, Crime
More info on
rating
1.0*/5.0*
Once a Thief poster

Hard Target

by John Woo
Specifics
USA [1993] - 97m
Genre
Drama, Action, Thriller, Adventure
More info on
rating
1.0*/5.0*
Hard Target poster