DVD/Blu Ray

She Shoots Straight (15) Home Ents Review

Dir. Corey Yuen, Hong Kong, 1990, 92 mins, Cantonese with audio options and subtitles

Cast: Joyce Godenzi, Carina Lau, Tony Leung Ka-fai, Yuen Wah, Pik-Wan Tang, Sammo Hung

Review by Colin Dibben

Matriarch-led family drama meets female cop action and martial arts mayhem in this very satisfying Hong Kong thriller.

Inspector Mina (Godenzi) is an ambitious cop who has just married her boss (Leung Ka-fai). She has married into a family of female cops, as hubby has 4 sisters on the force and a mother (Pik-Wan Tang) who knows a thing or two about the effects of police work on family life. Her sisters-in-law resent Mina, especially hot-tempered Chia (Lau).

Mina’s team is tasked with taking down a Vietnamese gang who have come to Hong Kong to buy arms and commit a series of robberies. As is often the way, the case soon becomes a question of personal vengeance on both sides, resulting in massive shoot outs and some great hand to hand fighting.

The final fight between Godenzi and Agnes Aurelio, playing her female Vietnamese nemesis, is considered one of the most impressive female fights in the genre. It looks great – but why do these climactic scenes always happen in quarries?

In some ways, what makes She Shoots Straight stand out is the interaction between the female family members, which is pretty unusual in itself for a Hong Kong genre film; and is surprisingly well developed. The film starts with the wedding, but focuses on the bitching of the sisters, as well as their racism: they dislike Mina because she is mixed heritage.

But the most impactful scene for this pretty unique plot strand is Mother Huang’s birthday in a big restaurant, when Mina and Chia attempt to keep terrible news from her. Pik-Wan Tang (a well-known Hong Kong TV actress) plays the hard-as-nails pensioner with real power and the scene ends with a satisfying if tearful reconciliation.

Hong Kong action films are absurdly good at re-energising and inflecting the two or three plots available to the cop genre. She Shoots Straight is a classic example and a total hoot!


She Shoots Straight is out on Blu-ray on 18 September from Eureka Video.