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Running Out of Time (1999)


When a criminal master, Peter Cheung (Andy Lau) finds out he has under one month to live. He decides to burgle a major Diamond Trading Company and plans to avenge the death of his father, who passed away a year before. Peter holds the manager hostage and insists on seeing a negotiator. Not just any negotiator, he wants to see Ho Sheung-Sang (Lau Ching-Wan).

Ho soon arrives and is informed about the situation. When negotiating with Peter, Peter tells Ho that he’s going to be playing a game with him for the next 72 Hours. The rules are simple Officer Ho has those 72 hours to arrest Peter, if Ho mange’s to get Peter to the Police station, Game Over, Ho Wins…

Although Peter begins to sending clues to Ho in hope that Ho will catch up with him.

Peter escapes with the diamonds and meets up with his fathers business partner, Baldy (Waise Lee). Cleverly disguised as his dead father (Baldy had never known that Peters father had passed away). Peter & Baldy trades 5 Million Dollars for a blue diamond necklace. Although the necklace looks fake and cheap, its the real deal. Peter plans to leave with the diamonds, the necklace and the money all to himself…

Ho’s boss, Chief Inspector Wong (Hui Shui-Hung) is quite humorous, he’s also a very bad negation. He acts quite mean to Ho until a certain part of the story where he’s mistaken Ho to have the one month to live, instead of Peter.

Peter also seems to work up a small relationship by a young woman he keeps on meeting on the bus, its quite a nice touch to the film actually.

Lam Suet also stars in the film as Baldy’s henchmen, but he always seems to have a comedic run ins with Officer Ho.

Finally, I get to see a Johnny To flick and boy was I surprised, some very tense scenes, which kept me on the edge of my seat. The film managed to pull out quite a lot of surprises which was very delightful. Andy Lau was great in this movie, I was expecting him to play a similar role to his character Ming from Infernal Affairs. Yet he played someone completely different. Lau Ching-Wan was amazing, he out done himself. Having only seen him in films such as The Black Mask and Ringo Lam’s Full Alert was clearly surprised.

All and All Running Out Of Time was a real boost in the Cop and Robbers genre of films.

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