This road-racing exploitation escapade is based on a popular manga series but, with the action entirely centred on a single mountain pass and the mise en scène alternating between scene-setting flyovers and multi-angle in-car race-vision, it feels like a gaming adaptation. Takumi (Taiwanese pop star Jay Chou) is the local lad who has unwittingly mastered the art of drifting (driving round corners really fast) while delivering tofu in a battered old Toyota; his prowess attracts various boy racers into a series of hotrod-measuring contests. Although the races are reasonably adrenalised, they’re all much the same, and Takumi’s emotional baggage – deadbeat dad Anthony Wong, drippy love interest Anne Suzuki – is even less zippy; no wonder he looks bored. Despite helming the impressive ‘Infernal Affairs’ trilogy, directors Lau and Mak struggle with the narrative and of the cast only Chapman To (playing half his age as Takumi’s clownish classmate) makes any impression. The climax involves some kind of three-way race-off, but it’s hard to tell what’s at stake and harder to care.
Initial D: Driftracer
|Release date:||Friday May 12 2006|
Cast and crew
|Director:||Andy Lau, Alan Mak|