Comparison between the Hong Kong version on Disc 1 and the Ultimate Cut (Ending #3) on Disc 2 of the UK Blu-ray Deluxe Collector's Edition from 88 Films.
- 8 added scenes
In addition to varying bonus material and additional original/alternate audio tracks, a major selling point for 88 Films' edition is the Ultimate Cut (also called the "Hybrid Cut" in early announcements) and the accompanying Ending Randomiser. As is well known, both Hong Kong and Mandarin versions contain their own exclusive material, and the Ultimate Cut combines this into a longest possible version. The most noticeable difference, however, was the different fate of the film's two main characters and with a total of 4 ending options, they've tried to cover every conceivable preference in the Ultimate Cut here as well. We have summarized the details in our report on the Ending Randomiser.
In this comparison, we once again focus on the Ultimate Cut and have used ending variant 3 ("Heroes Always Sacrifice") as a comparison version. Since Cynthia Rothrock and Yuen Biao die in this one at the end, it is closest to the Hong Kong version. All the alternate moments from the finale in the cut report between the Hong Kong and Mandarin versions are thus irrelevant. There remain just 8 scenes that were exclusive to the Mandarin version and have been included here in their entirety. For many interested parties, especially this final option of the Ultimate Cut is probably the preferred choice. In any case, the material has been correctly incorporated and thus appears quite fluid in the course of the film.
05:52 / 05:52-06:43
After a first shot of the family at the table, the Hong Kong version is missing a dialogue. The wife is upset that her husband always has to be the key witness. Because of this missing dialogue, the Hong Kong version doesn't quite make clear why the entire family is murdered. Finally, a shot of the killer entering the building.
11:01 / 11:52-12:16
After Chan leaves the office, the Hong Kong version is missing Chan putting a cassette into his tape recorder in the car and driving down the highway. Also missing is a short flashback - how Chan and his mentor talk at the beginning of the film.
12:00 / 13:15-13:28
The kid comes back with ice cream and there is again a lack of dialogue that would have somewhat closed the logic gap in the Hong Kong version. Chan mentions here that the drug dealers have to be eliminated.
12:24 / 13:52-15:01
Completely missing from the Hong Kong version is Chan marking one of the two gangsters with a red pen in his penthouse and then changing for a night action.
68.5 sec (= 1:08 min)
18:48 / 21:25-21:28
The camera moves up a bit more on the Mandarin and Export versions, and Cindy picks up a Mahjongg tile from the stack.
18:55 / 21:35-23:16
More discussion at the game table. It's obviously about Cindy understanding more of the Mahjongg game than the Asian players give her credit for. Since the usual western viewer is unlikely to know the rules, however, this scene was probably deleted completely - similar to the US cut of Project A. Finally, the baddies are brought in and you can see another shot from above.
101 sec (= 1:41 min)
30:02 / 34:23-35:19
To find out if the perpetrator parked in front of the hotel, Cindy had parking tickets collected. Joe and two colleagues come to her office with more parking tickets to hand over to her. Joe finds the whole action rather pointless, since the culprit could have parked anywhere, so he and his colleagues get from her the task of collecting the parking tickets of the surrounding streets. Thereupon his colleagues get angry.
53:13 / 58:30-61:42
A slightly more interesting moment, because here there was alternative material in both versions. The Ultimate Cut shows chronologically first the block from the Hong Kong version (court scene and Cindy/Chan outside in cars).
This is followed by the additional scene of the Mandarin version, where Cindy runs after the superintendent and demands Chan's arrest, since she supposedly caught him in the act in the house. But the superintendent refuses on the grounds that he is a lawyer and therefore has a clean record.
Scene change: Yu teases his deaf-mute grandfather with the food. The latter tries several times to hit Yu with the stick, but is not really successful. When the grandfather thinks he is alone, Yu reappears. He runs to the gate and runs into his grandfather's chess partner, thus spreading all the pieces across the floor.
191.6 sec (= 3:12 min)