Though underappreciated in contemporary film criticism, Bullet in the Head is a landmark in John Woo’s career as a film director. Featuring strong early work by Hong Kong stars such as Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Simon Yam, the film functions both as modern Jacobean revenge tragedy and as an allegory of fears surrounding the Tiananmen Square incident for Hong Kong residents facing reunification with China. Detailing the circumstances surrounding production and the role of leading stars, Tony Williams argues for the film’s central importance as a major triumph of dynamic Asian cinema and assesses its significance both for Hong Kong cinema and Woo’s later career.
About the Author
Tony Williams is Professor and Area Head of Film Studies in the Department of English at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. His recent books include The Cinema of George A. Romero Knight of the Living Dead, Body and Soul The Cinematic Vision of Robert Aldrich, and the anthology Horror International (edited with Steven Jay Schneider).