- Associated Press - Friday, September 9, 2011

VENICE, ITALY (AP) - Acclaimed Hong Kong filmmaker Johnnie To has abandoned his trademark action thrillers _ at least for now _ to tackle a story inspired by the global financial crisis.

His latest effort, “Life Without Principle,” tracks the days leading up to, and the day of, a dramatic plunge at the Hong Kong stock market.

The movie, which made its world premiere Friday at the Venice Film Festival, follows three characters whose lives intersect amid the financial turmoil.

To told reporters in Venice that “the financial crisis is a theme right now” and that he felt “like Hong Kong has become a casino.”

The movie was the last to screen in competition before the festival announces the winner of the Golden Lion on Saturday.

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