In Hong Kong, 1978, a gambler, Wong Chi Hang (Chan Chi Leung), fights over money with a man and burns him alive.
We fast-forward to Macao, 1986. Wong owns the Eight Immortals Restaurant, after he had killed the owner, Lam. Wong gamble in the back of the restaurant and cheats. The butcher sees it and tells Wong, who gets angry. Wong kills him and butchers his body up. He then grinds the flesh up and uses it to make barbeque pork buns in his restaurant!
Lam's brother sends a letter to the police about him not responding to their many letters. So the detectives visit the restaurant to question Wong. Wong gives them take-out pork buns for free and they all eat and love them at the office! The police question Wong again and inspect his room above. Several things he says are suspicious, causing them to perform surveillance on him. They find several more suspicious pieces of info. Wong tries to flee to China but is caught by police and questioned.
Police try to beat Wong to confess to killing Lam but, he escapes into the hall filled with reporters, yelling police brutality. So they put Wong in prison but Wong injures himself so they release him to a hospital. The police work with the doctor to keep Wong awake with drugs and brutal torture until he confesses. In prison, Wong dies before being officially charged.
Now this is one gross and disturbing movie!! Actually, that's a gross understatement. It's definitely one of the most brutal movies I've ever seen! Now, this is an Asian film, so there's the usual humor throughout which might ruin the tension for some viewers, but if you're like me, with a twisted sense of humor, you'll enjoy it.
This is supposedly based on a true story, which only added to the horror portrayed. The story jumps around, back and forth between the past and present. It's easy to follow and you'll out most of the plot fairly early on. This isn't a story where you need to figure anything out but, rather, one where you just sit back, watch the events unfold and try not to vomit.
The atmosphere is like most Asian thriller, pretty laid back and not rushed. In contrast, the scenes of killing are very different; very crazed and feverish. This atmosphere is almost solely created by Anthony Wong Chau-Sang, the actor playing the killer.
The cinematography is unique, where you see gore and yet don't see it. You see the hands and saws butchering people but the actual shots are just above the bodies. You just see blood splattering everywhere and the after-effects of the slaughter as the parts are pushed into the grinder. I'm not sure if this is done to cut down on SFX costs or to just imply the gore. In any event, it's enough gore for most gore-seekers. Besides the blood and body parts, there's no other SFX.
The cast is adequate but most are paper characters so no room to use great acting abilities. BUT Anthony Wong Chau-Sang, as the killer, Wong Chi Hang, steals the show! He's husky and nerdy-looking at first but once he gets started, he turns into a wild, manic and savage beast! He's like Nicholson after he snaps in The Shining. Without him, this film just would not work as well as it does.
The director does double-duty as the playboy, Officer Lee.
Bare in mind that Asians aren't as politically correct as in the U.S., so expect blatant sexual harassment and outright perverseness throughout the film. I mean when is the last time you've seen a police detective prance around on cases with hookers on his arms??
Just one of the grossest films I've ever seen! Not for the faint of heart...or stomach! There's several scenes which are some of the most disturbing ever. I recommend this to gore seekers but if a lot of gore bothers you, DO NOT watch this!
The DVD is hilarious! It's setup as a Chinese restaurant menu!
One interesting tidbit. Anthony Wong Chau-Sang has a heavy metal band. His mother is Chinese and Father was an English sailor so he has unique facial features.
Officer Lee: Sharks can put arms and legs into a bag?
Officer Lee: I don't eat barbeque pork buns. You never know what's in the filling.