Women on the Run, Even though I am a fan of horror movies, I also have a soft spot for action films, especially Asian ones. And they seem to have a great never-ending catalogue of stuff I have never seen or heard about before. This movie is one of them, so let’s see if it is worth checking out. I am Torstein from CT and this is the 1993 film Women on the Run. In Women on the Run we first meet the young girl and aspiring martial artist Siu Yin. She comes from a small village in China, but has big dreams of one day making it as a martial arts actress in Hong Kong. She meets a young man who convinced her to join him on his travels to the big city, but it quickly becomes clear that he had ulterior motives. He exploits her by introducing her to drugs and then forcing her to become a prostitute.
She eventually gets away from her abusive boyfriend, but still being hooked on heroin, she sees no other option for herself but to continue with the world’s oldest trade. After a police raid, she again is forced to do something she doesn’t want to do. The female undercover detective Ah Hung makes a deal with Siu Yin that says she will be allowed to walk free of jail time and avoid being deported, if she helps out with bringing down the crime boss King Kong. Yeah, I’m not kidding, the bad guy character is named King Kong. But bad men does not only come in the form of underworld crime bosses.
Siu Yin and Ah Hung will find out that even though they come from two different worlds, they find a common thread in that they both are being used by selfish, manipulative males. So, does that means that Women on the Run is a movie about female empowerment? Not exactly… You could look at parts of it as that, but it would be hard to make that argument as the other part of this film is straight up exploitation and putting these women into situations where they will do action scenes while either being in skimpy outfits, or just totally nude.
I do think that they had something here, not with the naked actions scenes, although I certainly didn’t mind those, but with the two bad ass females that come from totally different lives, but still share similarities in their stories, teaming up to take down bad guys. It’s a story that I could easily see being redone today in a John Wick type of style. Story aside, Women on the Run has some fun action sequences that are well choreographed and better than what I expected when I pressed play on this Hong Kong Cat III movie.
The Cat III part comes into full effect when our two leading ladies find themselves in Canada of all places, and I guess the screenwriter Yuen-Leung Poon doesn’t have the same friendly look at Canada as many others has. The two girls are quickly being attacked by a group of over the top bad guys, and just to make sure you know they are bad, the gang is introduced by showing them kicking a dog, an obvious stuffed dog, but still. The directorial team behind this was surprisingly enough David Lai and Corey Yuen, two dudes who have plenty of experience with action, both in front and behind the camera.
Yuen especially should be familiar to fans of Hong Kong cinema, as he has acted in over a hundred movies, done a lot of stunt and choreography work and also directed some notable entries to the genre, and even had some Hollywood success with the Jason Statham film The Transporter. The two ladies who run the show are played by Tamara Guo and Farini Cheung, both making their debut in a feature film. I’m surprised that I haven’t seen them in anything else yet, as they both do a pretty good job on this one and both have on screen charisma and the martial arts chops to work as leading ladies in action films.
Perhaps I’m just sleeping on their filmographies, let me know if you’ve seen anything else with any of these two women in it that are worth checking out. Women on the Run might not be a satisfying revenge film as the humiliation and abuse that these females take outweights the payback they get in the end. It is an absurd movie with an uneven tone that is hard to take serious, but if you have a combined interest in Hong Kong action and sleazy exploitation flicks, then you might just come out of this feeling satisfied by the entertainment it brings.
I had fun with this one, even if does have some nasty parts that I would have liked to see handled with a bit more serious. Women on the Run ultimately gets the good score of 3 out of 5. If anyone else in the world has seen Women on the Run, then I guess it would be my audience. So, have you seen this? If so, what did you think of it? And I’m always up for recommendations of more unknown Hong Kong action or sleaze, so you are more than welcome to put some suggestions for me and others in the comment section below.