Entertainment Weekly - 01/21/1994
"...Enough heart-stopping set pieces for three such movies....Peculiar visual poetry." -- Rating: A
Variety - 08/30/1993
"...Briskly vigorous....Woo helps his star display his specialty -- high-powered martial arts skills -- with greater panache and stylization than before..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 08/20/1993
"...Woo is such a dynamo, utilizing multiple moving cameras and ghostly effects, he can make the ejection of a shotgun shell a thing of beauty and wit..."
In his Hollywood debut, Hong Kong directing sensation John Woo styles this action movie about a simple Merchant Marine who seeks to protect a beautiful woman and avenge the death of her father. The killers are the arrangers of "human safaris" that provide sport for the very rich.
A young woman searching for her missing and homeless father in a seamy section of New Orleans is saved by a martial arts fighter, sometime merchant seaman, when a gang of thugs try to rob her. She hires the man to help track down the lost parent, and they both end up being the targets for a vicious gang of "human" hunters. Chance Boudreaux, a brawny merchant sailor who has come up on hard times saves doe-eyed Natasha Binder from a gang of thugs and she offers him a proposition; she'll pay him well if he'll help find her missing father in New Orleans. But her father may already have been killed by wealthy thrill-seeking businessmen who have made a sport of hunting forgotten, homeless, veterans, and if Chance and Natasha discover this deadly scheme, they just might, be the next victims.
Color by DeLuxe; Eastman film, Foto-Kem processing, in New Orleans, Louisiana,
John Woo has quickly become the king of Hong Kong's cult cinema. But "Hard Target," Woo's long-awaited American directorial debut, opened to mixed reviews. For example, one reviewer called the film a "compromised work, a stylistic hybrid of American and Hong Kong action" pictures. However, the fact that the film had a hard time getting past the Motion Picture Association's NC-17 rating, it's likely the director's work was adulterated considerably. There are even rumors it's not a Woo film.
Though "Hard Target," is not a remake, it is based on the 1932 film "The Most Dangerous Game," which comes from a classic story by Richard Connell. This picture was scripted by screenwriter Chuck Pfarrer.
Other films shot in New Orleans include: "The Big Easy," "No Mercy," "Tightrope," "JFK," "Belizaire the Cajun."
Additional credits: Michael St. Hilaire and Peter Krause (camera operators), Tim Simonec (orchestrator), Kodo (music performer), Craig Hosking and Cliff Fleming (helicopter pilots), Jules Sylvester and Jim Brockett (snake wranglers), Michele Poulik (set decorator), John Pospisil (special sound effects), Weddington Productions Inc. (sound effects) and Rick Alexander, Michael C. Casper and Jim Bolt (rerecording mixers).
Production services provided by Alamagordo Production Contractors. Titles and opticals by Pacific Title.
Rated BBFC 18 by the British Board of Film Classification.