A group of heavily armed criminals led by the notorious Cho Nam pulls off a string of violent heists on armored bank transports, and as a result, seasoned Senior Police Inspector Lui Ming Chit (Andy Lau) is determined to bring them down. One of the group members is Pong (Gordon Lam) who had just recently been released from prison and wants to leave his criminal life behind to be together with his girlfriend, Yin Bing (Yao Chen), and decides to be a police informant. Neither man, however, is aware of just how heavy the storm that they're both headed into is...
Not to be confused with the 1998 film starring Howie Long.
This film provides examples of:
- Arc Words: "Be a good cop."
- Asshole Victim: Downplayed. While Kit is a massive drug addict and recorded Lui's interrogation of Cho Nan, he didn't deserve to die.
- Bloodless Carnage: Massively averted - many shootouts result in tons of blood and gore.
- Car Fu: Lui uses a car to crash Cho Nan.
- Crooks Are Better Armed: Cho Nam's gang is heavily armed to the teeth, ranging from assault rifles and submachine guns to a light machine gun, grenades and C4.
- Delayed Explosion: In the climax, Cho lobs a pack of C4 through a hole into the underground gas pipes, which are damaged by the initial explosion. It's not until later does an electric spark set the entire thing off and cause the whole street to collapse.
- Downer Ending: See Pyrrhic Victory for more details.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Lui, who, in his vengeance against Cho Nam, goes down a dark path by personally assaulting Cho despite having no evidence, and letting a witness who'd recorded a video of his encounter die of an asthma attack by denying him his meds. During the climax, Lui even guns down gang members that try to surrender.
- Hide Your Children: Averted. Lui tries to save a young girl hurt by Cho Nam's men (and is also the daughter of one of his informants) but she dies in his arms.
- Ironic Echo: Near the beginning, when Pong accidentally crashes into Lui's car during a heist, he tells the police that it's an accident. When Pong ends up getting run over by a truck near the end, the driver also claims that it's an accident.
- Madeof Iron
- The Mole: Lui's friend agrees to be a heroic example of the trope. Sadly it doesn't end well for him.
- Not Me This Time: Cho Nan, the supposed Big Bad, says this to Lui when Lui interrogates him. Ends up being the truth. His henchman Paco is behind the evil acts this time.
- Pyrrhic Victory: Even though Cho and his gang are ultimately taken down, Pong is killed abruptly in a car accident, and Lui is ultimately sent to jail for his own vigilante actions.
- "Shaggy Dog" Story: In the climactic gun battle, Lui allows Pong to escape...only to be suddenly killed by a speeding truck.
- Smug Snake: Cho.
- A Storm Is Coming: Both literally and figuratively.
- Stuff Blowing Up: Cho's gang has an absurd amount of explosives in their arsenal, including even a grenade launcher, and they use them very liberally.