Supercop 2 (1996)

Own it!

review by Scott Hamilton and Chris Holland
See also:


Wing Chun

Heroic Trio


Supercop 2

Lava LampLava Lamp

Our rating: two LAVA® motion lamps.

Supercop 2
"That's what I do to people who
confuse me with Michelle Kwan!"
Supercop 2 is a sequel to Jackie Chan's Supercop (also known as Police Story 3: Supercop), though you shouldn't expect to see Jackie Chan in a starring role. Instead, Supercop 2 (also known as Police Story IV, Police Story 3: Supercop Part 2, and Once a Cop, but usually Project S) is a star feature for Michelle Yeoh, who plays mainland China cop Inspector Jessica Yang in both films. This time Yeoh has center stage, which seems natural, because she practically stole the show in Supercop.

A year after Supercop, Jessica Yang is still living in China. In the first scene we see her foil a hostage situation in which the Minister of Finance is at risk. She has more than a little help from a policeman who happens to be on the scene. That policeman is David, and he's played by underrated martial arts star Yu Rong Guang (Iron Monkey, My Father is a Hero). The sequence ends when bombs are set in the building, and these two gung-ho cops leap to safety out of what looks like the tenth floor of a building. Jessica lands on a platform on the end of a fire truck's ladder, while David slows his descent with a tree branch, then lands into the firemen's trampoline. In Hong Kong films, nobody uses the elevator.

Supercop 2
"I don't want to alarm anybody, but Roseanne Barr
is in the next room... and she looks hungry!"
Later, we find out that David and Jessica have some sort of relationship going on. But David breaks Jessica's heart by telling her that he's moving to Hong Kong to pursue business opportunities there. He bids her adieu, and, with fake visa in hand, heads off with a shady guy named George to find his fortune.

Six months later, a company that specializes in corporate security systems is robbed of a "Security Database System" that can crack the security of any of its clients. Apparently the company kept this unit as a floor model, and it is impossible to update the codes and render the unit useless. This leaves dozens of Hong Kong companies vulnerable to these high tech thieves.

Enter Martin and Alan, two Hong Kong cops. They were on the scene when the thieves made their getaway, and now they're charged with getting it back. For some reason, Jessica is called in from the mainland, though what special knowledge she has on this particular case is never clear. At one point Martin and Alan head out to the field to look for a man named Roland Pan. Jessica insists on going with them, though she's only supposed to be advising, on the grounds that "I know how he moves, and what's up here [in his head]." But when Pan's group is spotted, Jessica has to ask Martin which one Pan is!

Supercop 2
Uhhh... Michelle, is there something
you want to tell us?
So far this scenario is so standard, you're probably wondering what the point of this film is. Well, the fly in the ointment here is that the gang that stole the SDS system is led by David, though none of the cops know it. So as Jessica, Martin, and Alan hunt the gang, David contacts Jessica and tries to restart their love affair as insurance against getting caught.

Jessica first suspects that David may not really be getting rich through legitimate means when a member of the gang is captured and he turns out to have been in a Vietnamese military unit that David trained. At first Jessica thinks this is a coincidence, until that same gang member escapes from police custody by parachuting off the roof of the hospital shortly after David visits him. Yep, he parachuted off the roof. We guess the elevator was out of order.

Jessica tries to confront David, but he goes underground. Way underground, into the vault of the Central HK Bank. David's plan all along was to the rob the bank, with the help of a former CHKB employee named Roger Davidson. But once the heist is going down, David suspects Roger will double-cross him, mainly because Roger has brought along a bunch of burly guys who aren't really needed.

Supercop 2
Extreme Tae-Bo!
Alan and Jessica infiltrate the bank vault and do battle with various gang members and thugs. But as they do, Roger pulls the expected double-cross, resulting in the deaths of all of David's gang, while David and Roger try to kill each other as they race to get out of the building with the money. (The escape route involves ventilation tunnels and subway maintenance vehicles, because the elevators would have been too easy.) The whole thing ends with a standoff, and David must decide whether it's worth it to die taking vengeance for his friends.

Supercop 2 feels like a gyp because Jessica and David never have the dust-up we want them to have. David has gone so bad (he shoots cops) and is so callous in the way he treats Jessica that we want to see Jessica break every bone in his upper torso. But the late addition of Roger's treachery, making him the real bad guy, means that suddenly we're supposed to root for David, and that just doesn't work.

Another thing that doesn't work in Supercop 2 is Jackie Chan's cameo. In a tacked on scene, a gang member decides to rob a jewelry store dressed in Imelda Marcos drag. Alleged hilarity results when Jackie Chan, playing the same character he did in Supercop, is undercover in the store, wearing the exact same drag getup. It's an awful scene, sure to elicit an "I fear to look, yet I can not turn away" response from anybody watching.

Supercop 2 has the martial arts sequences and high flying stunts we would expect from a movie starring Michelle Yeoh and directed by Stanley Tong (Supercop, Jackie Chan's First Strike), but the lack of a proper climax left us with a bad taste in our mouth. If you want to see Michelle Yeoh kick butt, you'll have a better time watching Wing Chun or Heroic Trio.

Review date: 01/08/2000

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