Bullet in the Head

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Bullet in the Head (1990)

Bullet in the Head (Chinese title: Die xue jie tou) is a 1990 Hong Kong historical action drama film directed by John Woo. Set in 1967 with the effects of the Vietnam War in the background, the film tells the story of three friends who flee from Hong Kong to Vietnam, with dramatic and ultimately tragic consequences.


The following weapons were used in the film Bullet in the Head:


SPOILERS.jpg WARNING! THIS PAGE CONTAINS SPOILERS!


Revolvers

Smith & Wesson Model 15

A pivotal weapon in the film, the Smith & Wesson Model 15 is used by Paul (Waise Lee), Frank (Jacky Cheung) and Ben (Tony Leung Chiu Wai). Most notably, this weapon is used when three protagonists are held at the Việt Cộng camp, where they are coerced into executing fellow prisoners.

Smith & Wesson Model 15 - .38 Special
Paul (Waise Lee) uses his Smith & Wesson Model 15 to rob a shopkeeper in Saigon.
Ben (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) is threatened by Paul (Waise Lee) with a S&W Model 15 during an argument on the boat.
Frank (Jacky Cheung) aims the Model 15 at a prisoner.
Ben (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) holds a Việt Cộng officer hostage with his own Smith & Wesson Model 15.
Frank holds a Smith & Wesson Model 15.

Llama revolver

Y.S. Leong (Lam Chung), a Saigon crime boss, uses a Llama revolver to hold Yan Sau-Ching (Yolinda Yam) hostage after Ben, Frank and Paul attack his club.

Y.S. Leong (Lam Chung) points the revolver at Yan Sau-Ching's (Yolinda Yam) head.
Leong prepares to fire.

Pistols

Colt M1911A1

Colt M1911A1 pistols are among the most common weapons in the film, and are used by the protagonists, Vietnamese gangsters and ARVN soldiers.

Colt M1911A1 - .45 ACP
An M1911A1 pistol is aimed at a Viet Cong terrorist's head as ARVN soldiers prepare to execute him.
Corrupt ARVN officers and thugs with their M1911A1 pistols. One of the thugs in the background can be seen with an unknown revolver.
Ben (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) with an M1911A1.
Luke (Simon Yam) reloads his M1911A1.

Auto Ordnance M1911A1

The Auto Ordnance M1911A1 is also occasionally seen in the film, most noticeably during the final scene.

Auto Ordnance M1911A1 - .45 ACP. This is a well worn blank adapted gun used in multiple World War Two films as a substitute for the Colt M1911A1.
Ben uses an Auto Ordnance M1911A1 to threaten the crime boss.
An Auto Ordnance M1911A1 at the end of the film.

Browning Hi-Power

Some of Mr. Leong's thugs are armed with Browning Hi-Power pistols. Ben also uses a Hi-Power as one of his weapons when he confronts Paul at the end of the film.

Classic commercial Browning Hi-Power - 9x19mm
A thug with his Browning Hi-Power.
Ben with his Browning Hi-Power.

Norinco Type 54

A Norinco Type 54 pistol is used by Frank (Jacky Cheung) during the shootout in Y.S. Leong's club.

Norinco Type 54 - 7.62x25mm Tokarev
Frank holds the crime boss hostage with a Norinco Type 54.

Submachine Guns

Beretta M12

A Beretta M12 submachine gun, concealed under a piano, is used by Paul (Waise Lee) during the shootout in Leong's club.

Beretta M12 - 9x19mm
Paul (Waise Lee) awaits Leong's gangsters with a Beretta M12.
Paul fires the Beretta M12.
Paul fires the Beretta M12.

Sten Mk II

One of Leong's thugs is briefly seen firing a Sten Mk II before being shot by Paul.

Sten Mk II submachine gun - 9x19mm
A thug gets shot while holding his Sten Mk II.

M1928 Thompson

Luke (Simon Yam) uses an M1928 Thompson without a butt stock and loaded with a 30-round magazine during the shootout in Leong's club.

M1928 Thompson with 50-round drum magazine - .45 ACP
Luke (Simon Yam) takes the Thompson submachine gun from Leong's armory. You can also see a number of pistols and revolvers on the left at the top of the shelf.
Luke points the M1928 Thompson at Leong.
Luke fires the M1928 Thompson at approaching thugs.

IMI Uzi

Paul uses an Uzi submachine gun when he confronts Ben at the end of the film.

IMI Uzi - 9x19mm
A close-up of Paul's Uzi.
Paul fires the Uzi from his car.

Shotguns

Remington 870

Ben uses a pistol-gripped Remington 870 shotgun with a sawed-off barrel during the shootout in crime boss' club.

Remington 870 with sawed-off barrel and stock - 12 Gauge
Ben fires the shotgun as he covers his friends' retreat.
Ben holds off the thugs with the shotgun.
In a typical John Woo fashion, Ben fires the shotgun at a fountain, creating an explosion of debris.

Rifles

M1 Carbine

An M1 Carbine is used by a shopkeeper in an attempt to defend his store from robbery. Later, another M1 Carbine appears in the hands of a gangster working for a local crime boss.

M1 Carbine with twin magazine pouch - .30 Carbine
A shopkeeper with his M1 Carbine ducks when Paul fires at him.
A gangster fires his M1 Carbine.

M16A1

M16A1 rifles are used by South Vietnamese (ARVN) and U.S. Army soldiers, as well as Việt Cộng fighters. Luke (Simon Yam) is armed with an M16A1 when he attacks the Việt Cộng camp with American soldiers, and Frank (Jacky Cheung) attacks his Việt Cộng captors with a captured M16A1.

M16A1 - 5.56x45mm NATO
An M16A1 in the hands of an ARVN soldier robbing a jewelry store in Saigon.
ARVN troops armed with M16A1 rifles when they confront an anti-war protest.
A Viet Cong fighter points his M16A1 at Ben.
Luke approaches the Viet Cong camp with an M16A1.
Ben and Frank hold a Việt Cộng officer hostage.

Colt Model 653

When the main characters attempt to flee pursuing ARVN soldiers, Luke (Simon Yam) and Frank (Jacky Cheung) use Colt Model 653 carbines with two 20-round magazines taped "jungle style" to defend themselves. It is also used by U.S. Army soldiers during an assault scene. Note: In the real life, these variants were only available after 1973 so any depiction during the time frame between 1964-1973 is anachronistic.

Colt Model 653 - 5.56x45mm NATO
Frank and Luke fire their Colt Model 653 carbines.
Luke prepares to set off the Claymore mines.
Luke fires the Model 653 with one hand.

Norinco Type 56

Norinco Type 56 assault rifles are used by Việt Cộng soldiers who capture Ben, Frank and Paul. Paul later uses a captured Type 56 to massacre an innocent family when he steals their boat.

Norinco Type 56 (fixed stock variant) early model with milled receiver and under-folding bayonet ("pig sticker") which was standard on PLA-issue Type 56s - 7.62x39mm
Norinco Type 56 assault rifle aka M22, early milled receiver model without under-folding bayonet ("pig sticker") - 7.62x39mm
A Việt Cộng soldier holds his Norinco Type 56.
Ben is forced to execute prisoners with a Type 56.
Frank fires a Type 56 after seizing it from a Việt Cộng guard.
Paul with his captured Type 56.

Springfield Armory M1A

A Springfield Armory M1A is used by U.S. Special Forces to kill Việt Cộng guards in the watch towers during their assault on an enemy encampment.

Springfield Armory M1A - 7.62x51mm NATO
An American Special Forces soldier prepares to fire his scoped M1A.
A Special Forces soldier aboard a Huey helicopter with his scoped M1A.

Machine Guns

M60

M60 machine guns appear in two instances. First it is seen as a jeep-mounted weapon when ARVN soldiers rob a jewelry store and later in the hands of Việt Cộng soldiers at their encampment. U.S. Army soldiers are also seen using this weapon during an assault scene.

M60 machine gun - 7.62x51mm NATO
A jeep-mounted M60 machine gun.
A close-up of the M60 as it fires at a jewelry store.
A Việt Cộng soldier fires the M60 at an escaping prisoner.
A Việt Cộng soldier on the left fires the M60 at American Special Forces soldiers.

M60D

A helicopter-mounted M60D machine gun is seen when U.S. Special Forces attack the Việt Cộng encampment.

M60D machine gun - 7.62x51mm NATO
A helicopter-mounted M60D being fired.

Browning M2HB

Browning M2HB machine guns are seen on ARVN tanks and positions, as well as at the Việt Cộng encampment.

Browning M2HB on M3 tripod - .50 BMG
A Browning M2HB is seen in a sandbagged position.
A Browning M2HB is seen. Note an American soldier tosses a grenade into Việt Cộng sandbagged position.

Others

Federal Gas Riot Gun

During the scenes depicting the 1967 leftist riots in Hong Kong, police officers use the Federal Gas Riot Gun to disperse protesters.

Federal L-5 Gas Riot Gun - 37mm
Hong Kong police officers fire their Federal Gas Riot guns.

M79 Grenade Launcher

The M79 grenade launcher is carried by ARVN soldiers who use it to fire tear gas grenades at anti-war protesters. American soldiers are also seen using this weapon.

M79 grenade launcher - 40x46mm
ARVN soldiers aboard a truck hold M79 grenade launchers.
ARVN soldiers firing tear gas grenades at anti-war protesters.

M18A1 Claymore Mine

A Viet Cong terrorist uses an M18A1 Claymore mine to assassinate an ARVN officer. Luke and Frank later lay several Claymore mines to ambush corrupt ARVN soldiers.

M18A1 Claymore anti-personnel mine
A Viet Cong terrorist ignites the fuse on a Claymore mine.
A half buried Claymore mine laid by Frank.

M16A1 with M203 Grenade Launcher

Corrupt ARVN soldiers carry M16A1 rifles with M203 grenade launchers when they chase three protagonists along a river. This weapon is anachronistic since the film is set roughly between 1967 and 1968, while the M203 did not enter American service until 1969.

M16A1 with M203 grenade launcher - 5.56x45mm NATO / 40x46mm
An ARVN officer fires the M203 grenade launcher mounted on his M16A1.
A close-up of the M203.
An American Special Forces soldier fires upwards into a guard tower with his M203, a feat not possible in real life but possible in the world of action films. Note also the tiger stripe is a post-war commercial pattern.

M72 LAW

Corrupt ARVN officers use an M72 LAW to destroy the boat that the protagonists are riding on.

M72A2 LAW - 66mm
An ARVN officer aims the M72 LAW.
An ARVN officer fires the M72 LAW.

Mk 2 Hand Grenade

A Viet Cong terrorist also uses Mk 2 hand grenades along with a Claymore mine to assassinate an ARVN officer.

Mk 2 "Pineapple" High-Explosive Fragmentation hand grenade
A Viet Cong terrorist ignites the fuse on a Claymore mine. Mk 2 hand grenades are also seen.

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