Recently, when I saw the incredibly grim (but also oddly beautiful) Hong Kong serial killer movie LIMBO, I realized I should seek out some of the other movies I haven’t seen from director Soi Cheang (a.k.a. Cheang Pou-soi). DOG BITE DOG (2006) is one of his breakthrough movies, and it turns out it has many echoes (pre-echoes?) of LIMBO. Sometimes it feels almost like a remix (premix?).
LIMBO’s most striking feature (besides its black and white cinematography) is being set largely in alleys strewn with garbage. DOG BITE DOG opens with children in a garbage pile and has an important stretch taking place in a landfill. Both have an obsessed police detective who goes around savagely beating up informants, whose problems are connected to a family member currently in a coma. And in both the cop is chasing a transient killer from another country who is protecting a young, traumatized woman. But each of these things has a very different spin here than in LIMBO, the most significant being that this killer is a hitman rather than a serial killer, and is the protagonist. I think he’s even a sympathetic one. Eventually. (read the rest of this shit…)