This is the final film in an enjoyable but trashy film series that had used up its thin concept by the first installment, then rehashed it for a second film, before injecting a big dose of craziness for the third episode. And so it comes to The Inspector Wears Skirts 4, with the only returning cast members being Sandra Ng, Kara Hui and Billy Lau, as well as Wung Fu in the role of the superior officer. A botched operation has led to the disbanding of the female commando : Sandra Ng has become a widow and overbearing single mother, Kara Hui has entered a mental institution after a nasty fall left her nuttier than a Pecan log, and Billy Lau is now a school supervisor, and has married Sheila Chan after a short fling with Sandra that ended in near-castration. A new female commando has been formed, headed by Moon Lee, but is found to fall very short of its tactical objectives, which is why Sandra and Kara are called back, and a tough cop and instructor, played by Cynthia Khan, is brought in to whip them back into shape.

Similar to the previous three films, The Inspector Wears Skirts 4 consists first and foremost in a lot of unhinged Sandra Ng antics, with a sprinkling of action in the beginning and at the end (here we get a fairly exciting final fight where Cynthia Khan and Moon Lee take on Chui Jing Yat), a few droll training sequences (though this film spends much less time on training than the others), and some pop culture references, some forgotten, some still obvious : Sheila Chan is in a film of her own as Billy Lau’s psychopath wife, more specifically a Police Story spoof that sees her runs after a bus or fight in a mall, all to the famous theme song of the Jackie Chan classic. New elements added to the formula include an emphasis on gadgets (Cynthia Khan’s character is a super cop with “state of the art” accessories like jet shoes), a more cutesy tone (the girls are far less violent and sociopathic than in previous installments, and there’s a cringe-inducing dance number headed by Moon Lee), and, in one of the film’s few actual positives : an enhanced comical presence for Kara Hui, who is hilarious throughout. Witness her fight a henchman with a “green dragon” crescent blade, or getting so caught up in her kung fu stances that she actually gets sidelined in the fight she was starting.

Long Story Short : The Inspector Wears Skirts 4 is a stale last run, made watchable by Kara Hui’s hilarious performance and the welcome addition of Cynthia Khan. **

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