“I guess The Daughter of a Business Associate is Gangster wouldn’t be quite as commercial.”
Despite being directed by the same man as part one, this is only tangentially-connected to the first two films. The most obvious difference is no Shin Eun Kyung, who was the glue that held those movies together. Instead, as noted above, there is no wife at all: Shu Qi stars instead, as Lim Aryong, a mobster’s daughter forced to flee Hong Kong after her apparent involvement in murdering the leader of a rival gang. She goes to Korea and is put under the protection of Ki-Chul (Lee), a fairly crap mobster whose sole qualification for the job is a few words of Chinese. However, his star begins to rise and he develops a tough-guy rep: it’s really Lim who is responsible, but the local criminals would rather credit Ki-Chul than admit they got their asses kicked by a girl. Eventually, her hiding-place becomes known, and a team of vengeful assassins is dispatched to Korea to take care of Lim.
Similarlu to the previous entries, it’s a somewhat sporadic mix, with the humour generally working better than the action. There’s too much obvious doubling of the heroine in the latter, though for the former Lee’s expressive eyes are a nice contrast for Qi’s deadpan cool. Possibly beating both is Hyeon, as the translator hired to interpret: she starts of by saying what Ki-Chul wants to hear, before realizing the potential in her new friend, and the interplay among the trio provide most of the film’s high-lights. On the other hand it is undeniably too long, and especially towards the end, begins to drag considerably. The love that blooms between hero and heroine is, frankly, implausible: yet, since the entire concept is fairly flimsy, this doesn’t hurt the overall feel of the movie too badly. While we certainly mourn the loss of Shin, who is missed, much like its predecessors, this has no ambition beyond being light, frothy entertainment, and as such, doesn’t embarrass itself or the series.
Dir: Cho Jin-Gyu
Star: Shu Qi, Lee Bum-Soo, Hyeon Yeong, Oh Ji-Ho