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Colour Of The Loyalty DVD Review (Region 0)

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by Seth Gecko, Jul 21, 2005.

  1. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    Oct 9, 2004
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    <P STYLE='text-align: center'><FONT STYLE='font-size: 18px'><IMG SRC='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/images/ColourOfTheLoyalty/ColourOfTheLoyaltyR0.jpg' ALT='COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY DVD cover artwork' ALIGN='RIGHT'>COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY</FONT><br>Reviewed July 2005 by <A HREF='search.php?do=process&query=Cas Harlow&showposts=1&forumchoice[]=107&forumchoice[]=197' target='_top'>Cas Harlow</A>.</P><P><B>The Movie : 8</B></P><P>After the Infernal Affairs Trilogy, Asian cinema set a new standard for cop thriller, becoming a serious competitor to Western equivalents. The script, the style, the story and the acting are all superb and it is difficult to see how the upcoming Hollywood remake is going to live up to the original. In the meantime, Asia is still coming up with cop thrillers in the same vein, using the mould forged by Infernal Affairs to produce slight variations in theme. They may not all be as good, but films like Divergence have still offered something new in the genre. Now we get Colour of the Loyalty.</p><P>Boss Dragon has accumulated a huge wealth of funds from his Mafia enterprise, but when a cop tips him off that he has a spy in his midst, his whole empire gets turned up and down. Not knowing who to trust, he must test the loyalty of all of those close to him whilst also contending with the rival gangs that want to take this opportunity to destroy him. Despite having a step-son in his close circle of lieutenants, he chooses to bring in a secret group that he had commissioned to be trained to protect him – if ever the need to arise. At the centre of this team is the loyal Fat, a young man who fights with the same passion that Dragon once saw in his own eyes. Despite this will they be able to protect him from both the turf war and the inner conflict?</p><P>Well, this was an excellent thriller. Right from the outset, the way it was shot, the way the story panned out, the action, the acting, it is all spot-on. Offering up a slightly different perspective than its predecessors – focussing mainly on the viewpoint of the criminals – it tells a story of loyalty and betrayal and features some superb performances. The great Eric Tsang heads up the cast, playing a similar but darker variation to his Infernal Affairs character. Still, because the movie is taken from the mob’s point of view, you can’t help but root for him as he evades assassination attempts and struggles with control of the gangs. He is always enough reason to watch any Hong Kong movie, particularly thrillers – and this is certainly no exception. He is ably backed up by another ex-Infernal Affair star. Shawn Yue played the younger version of one of the lead characters in the trilogy and here he gets a well-deserved, more central role, as the head of Boss Dragon’s secret unit. There is definitely a bit of young Chow Yun-Fat about him, even if his charisma hasn’t fully evolved. There is also some solid support from Roy Cheung, as Uncle Chen, the man who trained the secret unit and Suki Kwan and Emma Wong as Dragon’s loving mistress and Fat’s emotional and unusually striking girlfriend respectively.</p><P>Colour of the Loyalty is a superb new Hong Kong thriller. Those who enjoyed the now classic Infernal Affairs movies will see where this came from and, although it does not break the mould, it still offers something new and interesting in the genre. I assume the title is a play on The Colour of Money, and should have been phrased The Colour of Loyalty, but something went wrong in the translation – as Colour of the Loyalty, it makes even less sense. I only bring this up here because one thing that does let the main feature down seriously is the subtitling. It is simply awful. Now, I have come across bad subtitles before – the kind you have to make sense of as you are going along – and they make it slightly harder to watch a film but seldom detract irreparably from your enjoyment of the movie. The subtitles on this film are occasionally so bad that you really struggle to grasp what was meant by the words on screen. Again, it is a superb thriller, but I raise this here because I think it would have been even better had the subtitles been proof read by somebody with English as their native language. They do not need a Chinese/English translator – it would have been much simpler than that to rectify and such a simple thing really did affect my enjoyment of the movie.</p><P><B>Picture : 8</B></P><P>Colour of the Loyalty has a strong and detailed 1.78:1 aspect ratio anamorphically enhanced widescreen transfer. Although not quite as good as you would expect from such a recent release – with such a high bit-rate – it is still mostly excellent. The softness is only occasional, as is the sporadic light grain and there is no sign of edge enhancement or other digital artefacts. The detail is good overall, with particular clarity on face-shots and the colour palette – whilst sometimes slightly faded – is mostly blessed by that familiar Infernal Affairs green-blue clinical tint, giving it a nice edge. The blacks are also solid and the transfer is generally good.</p><P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/images/ColourOfTheLoyalty/ColourOfTheLoyaltyR0_1.jpg' ALT='COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY'></P><P><B>Sound : 8</B></P><P>Colour of the Loyalty also gets two solid tracks in its original Cantonese language – a DTS 5.1 and a Dolby Digital 5.1 effort, along with a dubbed Mandarin alternative in Dolby 5.1. Again the DTS variation manages to take the lead, but the tracks are all largely good in quality. The vocals are presented solidly from the fronts and centre speakers and the occasional effects – whether footsteps or gunshots – all offer some fuel for the surrounds. The music soundtrack is one of the better I have come across in Asian thrillers recently, largely avoiding Hong Kong ballads in favour of a subtle score that perfectly suits the mood. It even prompts some nice bass action from time to time. Overall the two main original language mixes are both solid efforts, the DTS – as always – having the slight edge in terms of power. There are also both traditional and simplified Chinese subtitles, along with the aforementioned terrible English ones.</p><P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/images/ColourOfTheLoyalty/ColourOfTheLoyaltyR0_2.jpg' ALT='COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY'></P><P><B>Extras : 4</B></P><P>In the way of extras all we get are two theatrical trailers – only one of which has English subtitles and both of which give away the end scene – and a ‘databank’ of merely listing the lead cast and crew members and summarising the story.</p><P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/images/ColourOfTheLoyalty/ColourOfTheLoyaltyR0_3.jpg' ALT='COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY'></P><P><B>Trivia</B><br><P>For user information we use Bitrate 1.4 to scan the disk for the video bitrate, which also calculates the average bitrate. Below is a graph illustrating the bitrate of the disk, including the average bitrate reading. This disk averaged at 9.38 Mbps.</p></P><P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/images/ColourOfTheLoyalty/ColourOfTheLoyaltyR0_BR.jpg' ALT='COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY'></P><P><B>Verdict : 8</B></P><P>Colour of the Loyalty, despite its jumbled title and some awful subtitles, is a thoroughly enthralling new crime thriller. More Godfather than Infernal Affairs, it offers some interesting variations on the standard theme and brings together an older generation stalwart like Eric Tsang with a potentially new Chow Yun-Fat, Shawn Yue. If you like your thrillers then this is well worth your time, with a great picture and a good soundtrack. It is only marginally let down by the lack of extras but it is seriously affected by the poor subtitling. Apart from that, I wholeheartedly recommend this release.</p><div ALIGN='CENTER'>
    Review Disc Supplied by <a href="http://global.yesasia.com/assocred.asp?W7QIPXOV+/en/prdTransfer.aspx/pid-1004017567" target=”_blank”><img src="http://www.wvip.co.uk/images/dvd/SuppliersLogos/YesAsia.jpg" Align="absmiddle"></a><br>Please support us by using our review sponsors.</div><TABLE border='0' CELLPADDING='0' CELLSPACING='2' WIDTH='100%'><TR><TD COLSPAN='2'><B>COLOUR OF THE LOYALTY</B></TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Genre</TD><TD><A HREF='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/dvdreviews.php?include=exact&searchfield=genre&search_for=ACTION' target='_blank'>ACTION</A></TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Director</TD><TD><A HREF='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=director&search_for=BILLY CHUNG
    WONG JING' target='_blank'>BILLY CHUNG
    WONG JING</A></TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Stars</TD><TD><A HREF='http://www.avforums.com/dvdreviews/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=stars&search_for=ERIC TSANG | SHAWN YUE | SUKI KWAN' target='_blank'>ERIC TSANG | SHAWN YUE | SUKI KWAN</A></TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65'><B>Region</B></TD><TD><B>0</B> <FONT>(HONG KONG)</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>Supplier</TD><TD><FONT>Mei Ah. Released Thursday 23rd June 2005</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>SRP</TD><TD><FONT>$19.99</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>Discs</TD><TD><FONT>1</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>Format</TD><TD><FONT>DVD9</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>Time</TD><TD><FONT>90 mins.</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN='TOP' WIDTH='65'>Chapters</TD><TD><FONT>8</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Picture</TD><TD>Anamorphic Widescreen 1.78:1&nbsp;</TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Sound</TD><TD>Cantonese Dolby Digital 5.1<BR>Cantonese <IMG SRC='http://www.totaldvd.net/images/dts.gif' ALIGN='ABSMIDDLE' border='0' ALT='DTS Soundtrack'> 5.1<BR>Mandarin Dolby Digital 5.1</TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Subtitles</TD><TD>Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, English</TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Case</TD><TD>Amaray</TD></TR><TR><TD WIDTH='65' VALIGN='TOP'>Extras</TD><TD>Trailers<BR>Filmographies</TD></TR></TABLE><P STYLE='text-align: center'>If you would like to comment on this review, please reply below.</P>

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