Scantily-clad babes, Category III rating and of course, the once-popular “girl with guns” subgenre populated by Clarence Fok and Wong Jing’s seminal Naked Killer <赤裸羔羊> back in 1992 is making a comeback of sorts in the form of Fire Lee’s Husband Killers <女士復仇>.
The movie tells three different women who fell in love with the same man named “David”. The first woman is Chanel Chiu (Stephy Tang), an assassin who thought she’s been living a blissful life with her so-called faithful husband of 10 years. Unfortunately, her husband has an affair with Dior Mak (Chrissie Chau), who is a thief by profession and particularly hates men being disloyal. Then along came another mistress, who turns out to be a rogue SDU officer named Hermes Tong (Gaile Lok). All three of them eventually met each other in a seedy hotel managed by a scheming boss (Pauline Suen) and her two mentally troubled sons (Kevin Li and Lai Man-Wang).
Despite running a scant 90 minutes, Husband Killers <女士復仇> feels surprisingly overlong. Lee, who also wrote the screenplay, clearly wants his movie functioned as a trashy piece of cinema. Viewing this strictly as a guilty-pleasure entertainment, Lee sure knows how to frame his actresses in an utmost exploitative way. Stephy Tang looks fetching in her skintight black leather. The same goes with Chrissie Chau in a white skimpy outfit, while model Gaile Lok channelling Angelina Jolie’s Lara Croft-like wardrobe style.
No doubt all three of them look photogenic enough in front of the camera. But even with their feisty performances, Husband Killers <女士復仇> still feels like a missed opportunity. There are few times the comedy tries hard to be funny, only to miss its mark at the end. Lee’s overuse effect of slow motion during most of the action sequences hardly raises a pulse or generates a satisfying level of excitement. So, if you are expecting stylish action set-pieces in the vein of Naked Killer <赤裸羔羊>, prepare to be disappointed. Then, beneath all the lurid Category III subject matter, Lee also tries to spice things up with lots of female empowerment theme. Too bad Husband Killers <女士復仇> is all surface and little depth within.