PTU (film)

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Directed by Johnnie To
Written by Yau Nai-Hoi
Au Kin-Yee
Produced byJohnnie To
Starring Simon Yam
Maggie Shiu
Lam Suet
Ruby Wong
Cinematography Cheng Siu-Keung
Edited by Law Wing-cheung
Music byChung Chi-wing
Distributed by Mei Ah Film Production Co. Ltd.
Release date
  • 17 April 2003 (2003-04-17)
Running time
88 minutes
CountryHong Kong

PTU, also known as PTU: Police Tactical Unit, is a 2003 Hong Kong crime thriller film produced and directed by Johnnie To, starring Simon Yam, Maggie Shiu, Lam Suet and Ruby Wong.



The film follows a series of encounters of a group of patrolling Police Tactical Unit troopers during one night, which starts off when the patrol-team tries to help a sergeant of the District Anti-Triad Squad of the Hong Kong Police Force, Lo Sa, to retrieve his lost service-issue revolver after he was assaulted by a group of triad members. The films portrays the police officers' use of extra-legal means to achieve the results of investigations and reveals the complex relationships between criminals and police officers, the hostility amongst criminals themselves and even the rivalry among different bureaux within the Hong Kong Police Force.



According to To, the budget for the film was approximately HK$4,000,000 or about US$500,000. [1] It was shot entirely at night. [1]

While the final shootout sequence of the film takes place in Canton Road, To reportedly said that "if there was a single location where he would have wanted to stage a gunfight battle, it was Cameron Road, but he could not get permission from the police to do it". The sequence was actually shot in Ap Lei Chau. [2]


Awards and nominations

Cognac Festival du Film Policier

Golden Bauhinia Awards

Golden Horse Film Festival

Hong Kong Film Awards

Hong Kong Film Critics Society Awards

Seattle International Film Festival


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  1. 1 2 Axmaker, Sean (19 February 2004). "Karma Chameleon: A talk with Johnnie To (Page 2)". GreenCine . Archived from the original on 20 April 2013. Retrieved 1 November 2022.
  2. Teo, Stephen (2007). Director in Action: Johnnie To and the Hong Kong Action Film. Hong Kong University Press. pp. 128, 129, 264. Archived from the original on 21 December 2012.
  3. "Tactical Unit - the Code (機動部隊 - 警例) (2008)".
  4. "Tactical Unit - Comrades in Arms (機動部隊 - 同袍) (2009)".

Further reading