Helios (赤道) Movie Review

Movie Review Comments (29)

Helios (赤道) Movie Review | by tiffanyyong.com

Recommended Audience: Fans of Jacky Cheung 张学友, Nick Cheung 张家辉, Shawn Yue 余文乐, Wang Xueqi 王学圻, Ji Jin-hee 池珍熙, Choi Siwon 崔始源, Janice Man 文咏珊, Chang Chen 张震, Yoon Ji Ni 尹贞伊, 顾美华, 冯文娟, 朱千雪, Director Longmond Leung 梁樂民, Sunny Luk 路劍青 and Action/Crime/Hong Kong/Korea movie fans

HELIOS_SG_Official Poster

Helios (赤道) Movie Synopsis:

Chang ChenHelios, a most wanted criminal in the global radar, has stolen the South Korean military’s latest mass destruction weapon: a handheld nuclear device DC8 and 16 uranium spheres. They are planning to trade with a terrorist organization in Hong Kong.
Helios Movie StillsChief Inspector Lee Yin Ming (Nick Cheung) and Inspector Fan Ka Ming (Shawn Yue) lead the Counter Terrorism Response Unit of the Hong Kong Police Force. Along with Chinese senior official Song An (Wang Xueqi), Physics professor Siu Chi Yan (Jacky Cheung) and two South Korean weapon experts Choi Min Ho (Ji Jin-hee) and Pok Yu Chit (Choi Siwon), they hope to defuse a crisis sufficient to destroy the world.

Helios (赤道) Viewer Rating: 4.5/5 ****

Helios (赤道) Movie Review:

A few people recommended me about this film before I watched it, and I was like, we shall see. Hong Kong film, Police-and-thief, what’s new? “Cold War” directors? I didn’t watch that, so I wasn’t exactly convinced. I’m more of the Hollywood Avengers person, so now that I’ve watched this film, I thought I will use the same comparison to tell you guys how good this film is.

Nick Cheung Jacky CheungIt was exciting watching award winning Hong Kong actor Nick Cheung acting alongside with his rumoured brother, one of the Heavenly Kings – Jacky Cheung whom I’ve rarely seen on the big screen. Every scene was well-thought out and many lines had double meaning.

Watch it once, you might not know why the camera focused on certain characters at that point in time. Watch it again, you will realise how their expression had a different meaning to it. I won’t say who Siu Chi-yan (Jacky Cheung), the professor who specialized in physics and renewable energy resembles, in order not to spoil the plot, but if you’ve caught the film, feel free to tell me who you think he is (Clue: Character in First Avengers)!

helios_jacky cheung wang xueqiWang Xueqi as Song An, Director of Bureau of Investigation (China) reminded me of Nick Fury. He is the ‘leader’ people listen to, regardless whether they want it or not. Level-headed and well-versed in Chinese military tactics, Song An is highly concerned about Hong Kong’s security. The well-connected man can take care of any matter with a phone call. In the trailer, the way he delivered the line “You oppose Hong Kong. You oppose China.” (跟香港作对,就是跟中国作对)was a tour de force. Very Nick Fury huh?

Yu Wen leIn comparison to the veteran actors, Shawn Yue’s screen time and performance paled, especially when he was interacting with the Korean actors. He was good, but it would be better if the character had more development. My favourite scene of his was the moment when he saw how one of his comrades was killed. I could also feel that anger + desperation in my skin.

Janice Man HeliosLike the Black Widow, Janice Man is almost the femme fatale in the film. She’s sexy and deadly. A combat and firearms, a master of disguise, she staged three successful illegal weapons trade with Helios in six years, involving hundreds of millions of US dollars in total. Not only did she kick assess (especially Nick Cheung’s), her performance out-shined the other two ladies: the Korean agent living in Hong Kong played by Yoon Jin-yi and Song-An’s assistant, Feng Wen-juan who both played important roles yet failed to bring out their characters to the fullest.

Choi siwon HeliosJust eye-candies? I thought so too, until I saw Choi Siwon in action. Perhaps it’s just the way Koreans act (I meant every one of them in the film), when they are in character, their eyes especially, expressed their emotions. When Choi Siwon expressed his anger, Ji Jin-hee expressed his regrets or sadness (I’m not saying what happened!), your heart go out to him straight away. He’s the only one who fit to be my favourite Captain America, but well, with the ending like that, I can’t exactly say he is one. 🙁

Helios castAnother good thing about this film, they made a perfectly reasonable way not to dub the Korean actors’ voices (by using the translator earpiece), which made the whole film more realistic and professional. Too bad, the Cantonese language spoken are still dubbed into Chinese in Singapore, if not it would be perfect and fun to watch it in four languages: English, Chinese, Cantonese and Korean!

Choi Siwon HeliosI would say this is almost like the Asian Avengers: with an assemble of the top Korean, Hong Kong, China and Taiwan actors in this film, definitely one of the best Asian blockbuster I’ve watched this year! P.S. Choi Siwon is right, you will regret it if you don’t watch it!

Do You Know?


There were two version of the theme songs “Red Feat” (赤色壮举), one in Cantonese + Korean sang by Jacky Cheung (张学友) and Choi Siwon (崔始源) while the Chinese version was sang by Jacky Cheung (张学友).

jacky CheungJacky Cheung agreed to film this film half a year after reading the script. Both the director and scriptwriter wanted him to the professor when writing the script but Jacky Cheung was hesitant. He only agreed after the director’s repeated invitation. Jacky Cheung said that he agreed to the film as it is a film with 5 “Good”: Good Production, Good director, Good script, Good Actors, and of course, Good Rates!

Helios behind the scenesLongmond Leung and Sunny Luk were the two directors who filmed the award winning film “Cold War” (寒战), and the film “Helios” is said to be an upgrade. In the trailer, the line “Police are human and human make mistakes.” was seen to be an extension from “Cold War”.

Helios old nameThe Chinese name for Helios was initially called《赤盗》(Red Robber) during the launch, but was then changed to《赤道》. Director Longmond Leung said, ‘赤道’ is a name, it’s Chang Chen’s character name, but it is not just a name, as there’s more than one identity for that name. The direct translation for ‘赤道’ is a geographical location: the equatorial region, which also imply how the group of experts in the film will be bearing exception “heat” and “pressure” from different aread. With this film, the name ‘赤道’ will have a new meaning. As for Helios, it is the personification of the Sun in Greek mythology.

Janice ManAs one of the only females among a predominantly male cast, Janice’s role in Helios is strong and physical. Portraying Chang Chen’s assistant, many of Janice’s scenes are close-combat action sequences. Janice had to train six months before filming began, which included doing over one hundred push-ups per day.

Choi Siwon Ji Jin Hee Helios2Korean actors Ji Jin Hee and Choi Siwon had quite a few action scenes in the film, in one of the gun fight scenes, they were injured by the characters played by Janice Man and Chang Chen. Although it was their first time acting gun fight scenes, they were not daunted and keep saying it was fun. Under the directors’ guidance, both of them became gun experts and fought well in the scenes.

HeliosWang Xueqi 王学圻 as Song An 宋鞍 in this film acted as Dr Wu in Iron Man 3. (From deadline.com)

Perhaps Love poster 03This is the second time Jacky Cheung and Ji Jin-hee worked together in a film. The first time was Perhaps, Love (如果·愛) in 2005.

Helios Wang Xueqi Feng WenjuanThe line: “One who is good at attack, his enemy doesn’t know what he want to defend; one who is good at defend, his enemy doesn’t know what he want to attack.” (善攻者,敌不知其所守;善守者,敌不知其所攻) was mentioned twice in the film. It is a from Sun Tsu- Art of War《孙子兵法》

Behind The Scenes and Interviews

Check out Helios (赤道)Facebook Page!
Helios (赤道) is out in cinemas on 30th April 2015.

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*Disclosure: No monetary compensation was received for the movie review.

If you’ve seen the movie, do let me know what you think of the film in the comment section below. If you agree/disagree with my review, feel free to comment and let me know! Subscribe to my Youtube Channel for movie Behind The Scenes and Interviews playlists!

Often known as Singapore’s ABC girl, Tiffany Yong is an Actress, Blogger and Consultant.
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» Movie Review » Helios (赤道) Movie Review
On April 28, 2015

29 Responses to Helios (赤道) Movie Review

  1. […] first noticed Janice Man in Helios and Paris Holiday and was impressed how she transformed from a skilled killer and rebellious girl […]

  2. Helios (2015)Free Movie & TV Show | Free Movie & TV Show says:

    […] Helios (赤道) Movie Review […]

  3. manyue2003 says:

    I have read a few reviews online and they were mostly bad. I was really looking forward to the movie and those reviews made me hesitate. Finally I found a positive review from you.

    I watched it in Johor Bahru and they had the original Cantonese language. Ever since the Singapore cinemas stopped using Cantonese language, I had never watch any Hong Kong show in Singapore. I always go over to JB.

    After the movie, I love it. I would give it a 5/5. Good cast and pacing, great action and never a dull moment. I actually wanted to cut and paste your review and put it on IMDB. They only gave the movie 5.8/10 and there was only one review there and that was a bad review. I was kidding about cutting and pasting your review over at IMDB but many people go and read the reviews there especially the western world.

  4. Mia Foo says:

    Choi Siwon is called Woo Cheol in the movie… Pok Yu Chit is a Cantonese name? Or is it the canto version of park woo cheol… I don’t know canto, but in Chinese the Korean name should be Pu Yu Zhe…. And yes, Janice Min is HOT!

  5. Coffeelemonine says:

    Ya, look forward to part 2.. Super great movie

  6. joyfelizardo says:

    I’m not really a fan of action movies, but looks like this is going to be a good one. I wonder if it’s going to be shown here in our country.

  7. joyfelizardo says:

    I’m never a fan of action movies but this seemed to be very interesting, I wonder if it;s going to be shown in our country

  8. Gerous says:

    I do not really understand why nick chueng character goes after helios alone after realising who he actually is.. Care to share your pov?

    • I think he knows the danger he will put everyone in if he brings a team. He has seen how Helios was able to kill the Korean agent (aka Choi Siwon) as well as other people/leads. He needs to let someone else know and complete his mission. That’s my take…

  9. leybainpublic says:

    Awesome movie as I can see. Action movies like this deserves international screening. Kudos to all actors and directors!

  10. Kylie says:

    I always love to read your movie review, it’s much more interesting than other movie review… I think this is a show worth watching.. Jom, let’s go cinema!

  11. MapleMouseMama says:

    Wow, 4.5 is a pretty generous rating Tiffany, one that makes me wish I oculd see this. I love anything with action, good guys and bad, LOL and this fits the bill. Anything to take me away from “regular” life..

  12. yuhjiun says:

    I’ve yet to watch this but my sisters say it is very nice :O

  13. Franc Ramon says:

    The stakes are high for this one. I’m sure this would be a nail biter kind of a movie.

  14. Raymond Vasquez says:

    Such a high rate for a movie, and good words for it, makes for an interesting movie. Would try to browse my sources if this is also available here. 😀

  15. Ling Tan says:

    hmmmm. babe – the eye candies are quite enough to convince me this might be a movie worth catching 🙂 But if Desiree is right and the plot so-so, I’d catch it on my next plane ride! 🙂

  16. phyliciamarie says:

    I’ll be honest, the only reason I’ll watch this movie is because of the Korean actors Ji Jin Hee and Choi SiWon. I’ve never seen Jin hee in an action flick, so i really want to see the sadness and regret in his eyes you talked about.

  17. sikat101 says:

    Janice looks like a bad ass! You do no want to anger that girl. I agree that subtle expressions on the their faces tell a lot of stories. -katrina centeno

  18. Papaleng Pagulong says:

    Seems another great Chinese action film. Your review made me curious to seek where could I find a copy of it.

  19. 3xhcch says:

    I think I will like to watch a film like this with a pan-Asian cast in an action thriller. I wish I can get a chance to watch this film as well. – Fred

  20. amayachika says:

    Great action movie and I admire how Korean actors and actresses do the acts, with a variety of skills they displays in their performances.

  21. lee rosales says:

    I love watching guns and violence films, lol
    Bad guys winning at the end or the film? Thats sooo diff from all films

  22. Fully Housewifed! (@fullyhousewifed) says:

    Comparing it to the Avengers is a good touch, Tiffany. It’s sometimes hard for me to relate to movies outside Hollywood (like you, I’m very Hollywood-y, hehe). Sounds like a great, action-packed movie, I love movies with women that kick ass.

    Hang on…rumoured brother? So they don’t know?

  23. Anne V says:

    Not really into chick flicks or romantic movies, I’m an action movie kind of gal. So, this is just right up my alley, and Asians, in my opinion, do action films the best. Most definitely going to see Helios!

  24. Raquel says:

    For a second there I thought the girl in the picture was you. This looked like an action packed movie that I’ll surely watch with my hubby when we have time.

  25. Jason Panuelos says:

    Such a sucker for awesome action movies like this!! Definitely checking this one out! 😀

  26. Elizabeth O. says:

    Sounds like a movie worth watching. My husband loves watching Asian action movies; he’ll like this, for sure. Thanks for sharing.

  27. Adel says:

    Hopefully there is a part 2 coming up.

  28. Desiree Tan says:

    To be honest, the movie plot was so-so, because I was kinda disappointed that the bad guys are at a winning end. The Korean actors acted very well in the show, which is something that I really enjoy! I’ll give this movie a 3.9/5! 😀

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