A Better Tomorrow (英雄本色) A Better Tomorrow
Film Date :   1986
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A Better Tomorrow (英雄本色)

A Better Tomorrow

Ho works for the triad whose principle operation is printing and distributing counterfeit US bank notes. He is a respected member and handles the most important transactions; Mark, his best friend, is his partner in crime. Ho has the respect of the big boss, is given the title of "big brother," and often wears the all-white suit when representing the organization.

Incidentally, Ho has a younger brother, Kit, whom he loves. The irony is that Kit wants to be a police officer, a route that Ho seems to encourage. Thus Ho keeps his criminal life secret. There is a suggestion that their father knows what Ho is doing and is possibly involved, but this is also kept secret.

Ho is sent to Taiwan by the boss to finalize a deal. New member Shing is sent along as an apprentice. It turns out to be a police setup as Ho and Shing flee with guns blazing. To help Shing escape, Ho surrenders to the police. When Mark finds out that Ho is arrested, Mark kills the men responsible for Ho's setup; but not before Mark's kneecap is blown in the process.

While Ho is in prison, His father is killed by one of Shing's men (Shing has taken over the organization). His dying words to Kit was to forgive his brother. In anguish, Kit blames Ho for their father's death.

Ho is released from prison after three years. He finds work as a taxi driver. During one of his shifts, Ho finds Mark, who has been reduced to Shing's crippled errand boy. Mark pleads with Ho to return to their criminal life, but Ho refuses. Shing also proposes to Ho to come back, this time without Mark. Shing threatens to kill Mark and Kit if Ho does not comply.

Kit is obsessed with taking Shing down. He discovers Shing's next major deal, but Ho discovers it to be a trap. Kit refuses to listen to Ho's warning. Later on, Shing has Mark beaten almost to death. Ho arrives to save Mark. Mark demands revenge, but Ho begs to end the bloodshed.

In the final chapter, Shing's men ambush Kit, but Ho and Mark manage to catch Shing. An exchange is made for both men, but it explodes into a wild shootout. Ho is wounded by a bullet meant for Kit. Seeing his best friend shot, Mark berates Kit, and tells him that Ho came to rescue his only brother. Before Mark is finished talking, he is shot several times and dies. The cops arrive and Shing surrenders to them. Ho tries to kill Shing but he is out of bullets. Shing mocks, "I have money. In two, three days I'll be released..." The two brothers, finally seeing eye to eye, have no intention of seeing Shing released. Kit hands Ho a gun and Ho kills Shing. Ho then handcuffs himself to his brother, insists that he be taken into custody.

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