Di Yi Lei Xing Wei Xian
1980 / 95m - Hong Kong
Action, Crime, Thriller
Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind poster


September 03, 2010


Early Hark films are pretty cool, Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind is no exception. If you're expecting a Hong Kong rip-off of Spielberg's famous film (like I did) you'll be surprised to find there's no real link between the two, besides the titular reference. Instead, you're getting a somewhat gritty mix of crime and action elements, properly executed by a young Hark Tsui.

Three youngsters like to make trouble, though most of their pranks are harmless. When they set off a small bomb in a local theater they're spotted by a peculiar woman. She goes after the boys and blackmails them so that she can enter their little group. Slowly but surely they are forced to do increasingly dangerous stunts, and in no time they have the police and the Triads on their neck.

The setup is a little odd (more so for a Hong Kong film) and it took me a while to get a handle on the vibe Hark was going for. The film is a lot more direct and violent compared to similar films of that era, but I'm not complaining. The cinematography is a little basic, but the restoration definitely helps. Add some solid performances and a few surprising twists, and you have a pretty good film.