Hong Kong has chosen its Oscar entry, and it’s Johnnie To’s “Exiled”. Which is a little bit of a surprised. While I thought it was good, and very much classic Johnnie To, I wouldn’t go so far as to say that “Exiled” was the best Hong Kong movie of 2006. Not that I can give you another movie title, since my Hong Kong watchlist has gone downhill in the last few years, but it just never struck me as Oscar-caliber material. But in any case, “Exiled” will be competing in the Academy Awards’ Foreign Language Film category, and realistically speaking, it probably doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in heck of winning, or even being one of the finalists.
“Exiled” follows a group of professional mob hitmen as they converge on Macau in 1999 — two of the hitmen are there to take out a former gangster, while the other two are there to protect him. The men end up working together one final time against a slightly crazed mobster played by Simon Yam.
It’s classic Johnnie To, to be sure.