Sunday Lists: Nicholas Tse Roles, Ranked

nicholas tse

Nicholas Tse is one of my personal favorite Hong Kong celebrities. While he has moved into the mainland China space to expand his diverse talents, he is one that has definitely grown since the start of his career in the last 90s until now. Being renowned for having multiple talents, his musical talent being the one that lead my path to cross with his career. He has been in TV series and as you will see, many movies which starts off being more the bad boy/high school student roles but eventually falling into more and more action crime thriller variety with roles that have more and more depth and set in a variety of time periods and backdrops, making his work almost as diverse as his talents and titles.

This list will be updated gradually as I catch up with the movies that I haven’t seen.

Guo Zhui – The Bullet Vanishes (2012) Review

the bullet vanishes

Senior Station Officer – Ho Wing-Sam – As The Lights Goes Out (2014)

As the Light Goes Out

Ah Si – Bodyguards and Assassins (2009)

Bodyguards and Assassins

Jack – Gen-X Cops (1998)

gen-x cops

Man Yeung – The Viral Factor (2012)

The Viral Factor

Tong Fei – Beast Stalker (2008)

beast stalker

Detective Chan Chun – Invisible Target (2007)

Invisible Target

Frank Cheng Siu-fung – New Police Story (2004)

New Police Story

Stone – My Schoolmate the Barbarian (2001)

My Schoolmate the Barbarian

Chiu – 2002 (2001)

2002

Smokey – Half Cigarette (1999)
Sword Hua – A Man Called Hero (1999)
Knife/Ho Nam – Comic King (2001)
Tiger Wong – Dragon Tiger Gate (2006)
Maojie – Goddess of Mercy (2003)
Cheung Wai-Kit – Moving Targets (2004)
Tsao Man – Shaolin (2011)
Fred/Howard – Old Master Qi 2001 (2001)
Chan Ho-Nam – Young & Dangerous: The Prequel (1998)
Tyler – Time & Tide (2000)
McDull,the Alumni (2006)
Chang Ho Fung – Demi-Haunted (2002)
Cock Head – Enter the Phoenix (2004)

Can’t Remember or Haven’t Seen

Xiao Ming – Mirror (1999)
Shao Nu Dang (1999)
Ferrari – Da Ying Jia (2000)
Kit – 12 Nights (2000)
Fung – Tiramisu (2002)
Waiter – The Medallion (2003)
Wuhuan – The Promise (2005)
Tripitaka – A Chinese Tall Story (2005)
Nicholas – Rob-B-Hood (2006)
Bu Jing-Yun (voice) – Storm Rider Clash of the Evils (2008)
Heart – The Storm Warriors (2009)
Ah Wai – Hot Summer Days (2010)
Ghost Jr. – Stool Pigeon (2010)
Young Master – Treasure Inn (2011)
Nicholas Tse – The Midas Touch (2013)
Zhao Yongyuan – But Always (2014)
Ma Chi-kin – 12 Golden Ducks (2015)
Hu Yan Dazang – The Spirit of Swords (2015)
I Love That Crazy Little Thing (2016)
John Ma – Heartfall Arises (2016)
Gao Tian Ci – Cook Up a Storm (2017)
Lei Tao – Air Strike (2018)

Have you seen any films of Nicholas Tse?
If so, which do you like?
Share them in the comments below.

Advertisements

Ultimate 2000s Blogathon: The Twins Effect (2003) – Asian Cinema Film Club [Podcast]

Kicking off Week 3 of Ultimate 2000s Blogathon is the Asian Cinema Film Club hosted by Elwood and Stephen. AC Film Club is a monthly podcast that takes a look at  different Asian films ranging from Chinese, Korean, Japanese and other films. It doesn’t stop there as you can follow their blog to see monthly mixtapes for a variety of Asian music as well as reviews and essays, etc. You should give them a follow and join them as they are about to pass their 25th episode milestone. For their choice for the Ultimate 2000s Blogathon, they are sharing their podcast of 2003’s Hong Kong vampire action horror film, The Twins Effect.


The Twins Effect

The Twins Effect (2003)

Elwood and Stephen kick off 2019 looking at “The Twins Effect” a wonderfully random mash up of vampires, romantic comedy and special friendly appearances?
On this episode, they dive into this star-studded movie vehicle for Cantopop duo “Twins” while also looking at the many scandals which rocked the various cast members.
Stephen has another tale from the dark side of Asian cinema, this time looking at the actress Bai Jing, plus podcast recommendations, 2019 releases much more!!

Further Viewing

Mr. Vampire
Rigor Mortis
Diary
Beyond Our Ken

Shoutouts

The Feminine Critique
Cinema Recall
Forgotten Filmcast
Exploding Helicopter
Simplistic reviews
French Toast Sunday
Blade Licking Thieves
That’s Weird
Debatable

Listen To The Show

Itunes
Podomatic
Spotify
That Moment In


Thanks to Asian Cinema Film Club for joining us with this fun choice! Be sure to check out their podcast every month to see which films they choose to review and expand your knowledge of Asian Cinema! Remember to give them a follow and check out their other episodes

To see the full list of blogathon entries, you can find it HERE.

Ultimate 2000s Blogathon: 2046 (2004) by The Stop Button

Its already the second week of the Ultimate 2000s Blogathon. The first guest this week to drop by over here is Andrew from The Stop Button. The Stop Button was started in 2004 focus in film blogging. Over there, you can check out many different segments and film reviews. Its a site that you will definitely something that you will enjoy reading about all kinds of films. With that said, Andrew takes us to check out a unique film, 2004’s romantic fantasy/drama Hong Kong film 2046.


2046

2046 (2004)

2046 is a very strange sequel. Because it’s most definitely a sequel to In the Mood for Love. Tony Chiu-Wai Leung and Lam Siu Ping are playing the same characters, a few years after that film. But the way writer and director Wong deals with the previous film and its events… he intentionally… well, I’m not sure if distorts is the right word, because it works out perfectly, but he delays it. 2046 is a sequel to In the Mood for Love, but it’s also a sequel to itself. The film starts in the mid-1960s with Leung moving home to Hong Kong from Singapore. Well, actually, wait. It starts in 2046, a CGI megalopolis with a train and some narration about riding the train and trying to leave 2046. Like it’s a place.

2046 also has Hong Kong significance—when the British “gave” Hong Kong back to China in 1997, the Chinese said Hong Kong would stay the same way for fifty years. So 2046. Of course, it’s also got a significance to In the Mood for Love. But back to the future for a moment. There’s some love sick guy on the train. He wants to leave 2046. His narration also refers to Love, even though nothing else does.

So all the coincidences collide for Leung—mid-sixties Hong Kong had some significant unrest and Leung spends his time sitting it out, dreaming of the future and writing a serial called… 2046 in a hotel room 2047, which he took because 2046 wasn’t ready yet. Leung brings a litany of nightclub friends with benefits affairs home while musing on the goings on around him at the hotel. Faye Wong is the owner’s older daughter, in love with Japanese guy Kimura Takuya. Her dad (Sum Wang) doesn’t approve. Leung distantly watches the heart attack and incorporates it into his stories, which is good since Kimura plays the story’s protagonist in the future stuff. Leung’s also got to fend off Sum’s younger daughter, Dong Jie, who’s too young.

Because even though Leung is supposed to be a casual sex addict, charming the ladies by night, moping about his previous heartache through his writing, there’s got to be a line. And Wong, director, tests it from time to time. It’s a good narrative hook and only there because we still need to like Leung for later, because later is going to get worse before it gets better. Leung narrates the film–eventually even the future stuff–and it’s a very controlled narration. Wong, writer and director, doesn’t want to show too much. Like Wong, actress, appearing for an almost cameo before disappearing, just like when the film opens on Leung and mystery woman Gong Li to set up the Hong Kong homecoming. Wong, writer, is delaying certain things but for very good reasons, which aren’t clear until the end of the second act.

Because it’s not just Leung’s story; there’s also a second story-in-the-story, which Leung writes for writing partner and lovesick buddy Faye Wong for a while in the middle. It’s got a full narrative arc for future guy Kimura and even future Faye Wong. And that narrative arc is later going to matter for Leung and the film. It’s an exceptionally complicated narrative structure. Wong, writer, fractures the narrative in a lot of major ways, sometimes technically surprising ones (but the surprise isn’t the right reaction because they’re inevitable). But he lays out this always forward layer too. For the viewer, who is watching the events of Leung’s life—with tangents—but seeing Leung’s reaction to those events. Macro-reactions, not micro. So very deliberate plotting.

2046 has more than its share of “why is Wong doing this” head-scratchers, but they’re always the exact right move. Because while Wong, director, is keeping with Leung in the present, experiencing new events, Wong, just writer, needs to move the plot in peculiar directions. The film’s got these multiple, dense narrative tense layers and Wong, writer, needs to move between them sometimes rapidly, sometimes not. Wong, director—and with great editing from William Chang and music from Umebayashi Shigeru—has to figure out a way to trigger these movements stylistically. It’s gorgeously done.

The most drastic of the three big narrative shifts is someone I can’t believe I got 700 words into a post about 2046 and haven’t yet—Zhang Ziyi. She’s Leung’s first significant love interest. Meaning she falls in love with him and he treats her like shit.

Remember when I said it was important to like Leung? It’s when he breaks Zhang’s heart, which isn’t really a spoiler because it’s almost still first act stuff. If you took out the future stuff, it’d be first act stuff. 2046—a sequel—is initially just about Leung’s really sexy love affair with his neighbor, Zhang. During that time period, Zhang gets a lot more to do than Leung. It’s not exactly from her perspective, but Wong, director, makes sure it’s real close.

So, in the second act, 2046 becomes a sequel to 2046’s first act, which was a sequel to In the Mood for Love. Only as things go on, it turns out 2046’s first act is a sequel to the end of the second act flashback, which is a sequel to In the Mood for Love. The more Wong, writer, reveals about Leung, either through the present action, flashback, or the future story stuff… the more the narrative distance changes. Narrative distance in this case also taking into account narrative sympathies; assumed intentions as far as Leung goes. 2046 isn’t a mystery, but Wong does almost structure it as one. Really, I guess, the more appropriate phrase would be a secret. 2046 is a secret and Wong is very careful about how he wants to tell it.

Of the three female leads, the best performance is Zhang. Faye Wong is really, really, really close but Zhang wins out. Then Gong. Gong it’s the role. She doesn’t have anywhere near the amount of time as the other two. Gong’s really is the extended cameo it seemed like Wong was getting. Only Gong’s cameo seemed like a really short one when it opened the movie. Because Wong, writer and director, is so forcefully deliberate.

So good.

Leung’s really good. He’s not as good as Zhang, Wong, or Gong. In a way, it’s not his place in the story. Where he’s protagonist. And everything revolves around him. He shouldn’t be overshadowing in that narrative, at least not the way Wong wants to tell it. It’s a very delicate, precise performance. Lots of nuance. It’s outstanding.

It’s just not as good as any of the lead actresses.

Carina Lau has a nice cameo, Wang has some good moments, Ping is hilarious. Not comic relief hilarious, just momentarily hilarious hilarious.

High nineties majority of the film is inside. Restaurants, the hotel rooms, occasionally cars. Quiet moments between characters either on their own or in crowds. There’s one standout party scene, which opens things up for a while, but the scene’s still focused on Leung. Again, the film is exceptionally precise.

Great photography from Christopher Doyle and Kwan Pung-Leung. Great production design from editor Chang. Great everything.

2046 movie probably even works better if you haven’t seen In the Mood for Love, which is a singular description—and, in this case, compliment—for a sequel.

But it’s still a very direct, very intentional sequel.

It’s magnificent.


A huge thanks to Andrew for reviewing this Hong Kong film! Remember to head over to give The Stop Button a follow HERE. Tomorrow, drop by to my co-host Drew’s Movie Reviews to see the next entry.

As always, you can find the full list of entries updated daily HERE!

Valentine’s Double Feature: The Other Boleyn Girl (2008) & Prince Charming (1984)

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone, whether you celebrate or not (which we don’t other than on the blog as an excuse to watch romance films). If you don’t celebrate, then tomorrow is a great day for some discounted chocolate. 😉

We passed the halfway point of the alphabet which was really all I expected myself to get to by February 14th. This time, we’re at the next two letters, O & P. The first is The Other Boleyn Girl which I have put aside too many times so I decided to just go for it and get it off the list. For the P selection, I floated around a few titles but decided to go with something a little more romantic and comedic with Hong Kong’s 1984 romance comedy Prince Charming.

Let’s check it out!

The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)

Director: Justin Chadwick

Cast: Eric Bana, Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman, Jim Sturgess, Mark Rylance, Kristin Scott Thomas, David Morrissey, Benedict Cumberbatch, Oliver Coleman, Ana Torrent

Two sisters contend for the affection of King Henry VIII. – IMDB

I’m a bit torn on how I feel about The Other Boleyn Girl. On one hand, the first part of the movie was pretty entertaining with the obvious chemistry between the characters and the setup of the stage for the parents, their stand and favoritism between children as well as their ambitions and greed for power and fortune despite the consequence of putting their own children into difficult and complicated places. With that said, the start was pretty fun with King Henry (Eric Bana) take a hunting stay at the Boleyns home and having one daughter being set up to seduce the king which somehow defines who Natalie Portman’s Anne’s personality is which as it grows ends up causing herself some pretty irreversible consequences. While I get Natalie Portman’s character, the beginning half with King Henry and Mary (Scarlett Johansson) definitely was the more interesting part even if their focus was really not on them because it involved a lot of music overlaying passionate sex scenes.

To be fair, when the second act started and King Henry got lured into Anne’s traps of playing hard to get. It started getting a bit ridiculous. I’m not a history major and I don’t particularly know a lot about the history of England and the kings but as a historical drama (I know for Chinese history, there are kings defined for their bad judgement because of the women they choose), I can’t say how accurate it is but King Henry is very much getting played and not quite as kingly until he decides to justify his difficult decisions by raping Anne, which seems to defeat the purpose of making these tough choices and throwing it all out the window, hence his descent down the slippery slope, I suppose. It was very soap opera because it was so entangled in romance and the King’s floating attention span of always having women satisfying him and producing an heir when he did already have one that he disregarded, and then the mixed romances and improper decisions and playing games.

The Other Boleyn Girl was good in the sense that I think Eric Bana does a great job and I particularly liked Scarlett Johansson and well, anytime with Kristin Scott Thomas is a good time because she also is a very powerful actress even in the supporting role as the mother of Anne and Mary who ends up losing the most out of Anne’s desperate need for attention (or whatever you call it). Its not a bad film but it is still a bit drawn out unnecessarily.

Prince Charming (1984)

prince charming

Director (& writer): Wong Jing

Cast: Kenny Bee, Cherie Chung, Pak-cheung Chan, Rosamund Kwan, Maggie Cheung

Chen Li is the son of an enormously wealthy Hong Kong businessman and is vacationing in Hawaii, experiencing typical girl problems. – IMDB

There are a lot of films called Prince Charming. To my knowledge, 1999 also had a Hong Kong film called Prince Charming (which I have seen before with Andy Lau and Nick Cheung). However, we are dialling back to 1984 when Maggie Cheung still did comedies and Kenny Bee and Pak Cheung Chan was a huge deal whether for singing or acting or hosting. Directed and written by Wong Jing, this movie is bound for some laughters. As with most of Wong Jing’s film, he also has a cameo appearance as a passerby listening in on a conversation about some sex meter calculation.

Prince Charming is a pretty charming film. I have my issues sometimes with the humor of Pak Cheung Chan because sometimes it leans on the heavily dumb humor but somehow, perhaps its because its Wong Jing and I like his humor and Kenny Bee has this dorky humor to him that makes it all come together. Its a lot of fluff to be fair because the story itself is fairly simple and in the mist of the mistaken identity, its hard to really focus on the background plot of finding out whether embezzlement is happening at the office because it focuses a lot on the romance and Kenny Bee finding his love with Cherie Chung’s character. However, there is this sweet chemistry between them that works most of the time, especially in the awkward moments. Add in some family bits and a few silly moments and this really does have quite a nice vibe to it.

A lot of staple actors and actresses of the 80s (and 90s) are in this film and it shows their youth especially when the films starts off in Hawaii for a little bit and then heads back to Hong Kong. Its a romantic comedy so it definitely gives off this fun and entertaining sort of film packed with the 80s humor of Hong Kong that defined its films and boy, I really did like that comedic style a lot.

Valentine’s Double Feature alphabet for O & P are done!
Have you seen these films? What did you think of them?

Valentine’s Double Feature: Candy Jar (2018) & Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (2011)

Day 2 of Valentine’s Marathon is here and this double feature is C & D selection from Netflix alphabet. This time, we are looking at Netflix film Candy Jar released last year. For the next one is a 2011 Hong Kong International Film Festival opening film  Don’t Go Breaking My Heart starring two Hong Kong heartthrobs, Louis Koo and Daniel Wu. Its already looking up from the starting double feature yesterday!

Let’s check it out!

Candy Jar (2018)

Candy Jar

Director: Ben Shelton

Cast: Jacob Latimore, Sami Gayle, Helen Hunt, Christina Hendricks, Uzo Aduba

Dueling high school debate champs who are at odds on just about everything forge ahead with ambitious plans to get into the colleges of their dreams. – IMDB

Candy Jar is really very borderline teen romance. Its more of a coming of age with some little romance of debate enemies with social status differences as well that end up finding their true meaning together and start falling for each other. There’s some chemistry there but the movie has these heavy debate moments which just keeps repeating over and over again in a rather unnecessary means. I think it was to emphasis the debate process of talking extremely fast that they are like robot and losing the meaning of living and experiencing human emotions. Candy Jar is a pretty average film. Its harmless in its story and has a rather positive message of being true to yourself and living with life’s inevitable wins and losses because sometimes something else is around the corner waiting for you and plans change. “Sometimes we lose” is something that these two learn throughout.

While I can’t say that the chemistry between these two was outstanding but they did have their good bits that worked with me. What I liked was seeing the friendship that they found between themselves when they lost someone equally important to them. It lead them to find their similarities more than their differences. With that said, Helen Hunt does a cameo supporting role of sorts and I really liked seeing her here even if it was a huge role. Although, I’m still scratching my head on why its called Candy Jar other than the fact that candy shows up a lot here.

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (2011)

Don't Go Breaking My Heart

Director: Johnnie To

Cast: Louis Koo, Yuanyuan Gao, Daniel Wu, Suet Lam

An original twist on an eternal triangle, where secret crush and unrequited love take on altogether newfangled meanings of their own. – IMDB

Never in a million years would I have thought Johnnie To would direct a romantic comedy. I’m not sure what skills it takes to do it because I’m not a director however as silly as some of this movie, because that is just how Hong Kong romantic comedy likes to do it, there’s this charm to this film that I love. I could be because I personally have been fans of Louis Koo and Daniel Wu since forever. I mean, I’ve almost felt like I’ve watched both of them since the beginning of their acting careers so its hard to not really love how they have grown as actors. However, I’ve never seen Yuanyuan Gao before although I love her style and how she interpreted this character. This movie is a really coming together of Hong Kong and China as the conversation is both in Mandarin and Cantonese and I like how it does that because some films will choose to dub, which almost never a fun movie experience. Plus, I applaud the movie how it give both the male leads their time in the movie, making it less conventional as a love triangle while still giving the ending a unconventional ending as well (at least it went the opposite of what I thought would happen and that made me happy because the female lead finally chose the guy I thought she should choose).

As much as I love Hong Kong film and know their little quirks and signatures that people like to lean towards in their plot lines, its always nice to see the attempt of something different. There are some huge romantic gestures here and some core romance values which is talked about here and the leads have chemistry in both their ways but the story does sometimes feel disjointed. There’s still some fun qualities out of this one that works for myself especially because it keeps its cast very tight so we can connect with these three leads.

That’s it for this Valentine’s Double Feature with C&D selection!
Have you seen any of these movies? Thoughts?

Music Obsessions – December 2018

Music Obsessions

A bit of a change this December. While I usually have this month’s Music Obsessions completely dedicated to holiday music but I decided to do a separate post for it closer to Christmas since I have some other stuff I’ve been listening to. So here we are!

Like a Boss – KURA

We’re back to some more hardcore music than the last two months. KURA’s latest track is absolutely catchy and I’m loving it so much.

謝霆鋒 Nicholas Tse – 青空 Clear Sky

I’ve been a fan of Nicholas Tse’s since a long time. While he hasn’t been doing much in the past few years, its nice to see that the past year or so, he has been getting back to his roots and making some really meaningful stuff. This song gives tribute to Hong Kong. Its absolutely fantastic.

Pin Zhou 周品 – Angels & Demons 天使與惡魔

All Out of Love has ended as this post goes up. A little near the end was when we started looking back at another plot line and that is when this song showed up. I honestly think its a great song on how its performed and the lyrics and just everything about it.

一笑傾城 – Love O2O Main Theme

Netflix just picked up Love O2O, which is a 2016 Chinese TV series which I binged in the most epic way. Its fun and awesome and sweet and just all the best adjectives I have of it. With that said, the soundtrack is also fantastic. This one is awesome and is sung by a few of the supporting actors and its so fun and matches the TV series tone so much.

Tangled Love – Theway Zhang [An Oriental Odyssey Opening Theme]

Hands down my obsession for the second half of November in terms of TV series. I usually avoid TV series set in ancient China unless it has some historical drama value because those ones done by China is really good and mostly accurate, except for a few dramatization. However, this one is based on a fantasy novel. As you all know by now, my TV series are chosen based on some kind of link of the previous TV series that I watched so I started to watch this because its main lead (who I never thought was the main lead since his parts are fairly sparse) Yecheng Zheng that I liked in Love O2O as a supporting role is here. Its pretty lighthearted and quirky for the most part.

This wraps up this month’s Music Obsessions!
Before we hit 2019, look out for the music obsessions special for Christmas Music soon-ish!

Triple Feature: Look Out, Officer! & Doubles Cause Troubles & The Mad Monk

We’ve been doing double features for a while and I just couldn’t figure out how to break up these three films so I decided to keep them together. Welcome to the very long ago but finally revisited for now Triple Feature. A long description for just a sporadic segment to say the least. However, Stephen Chow and 80s/90s Hong Kong Comedy is what I like. It had a lot of charm and is witty and fun for the most part. Other than Look Out, Officer!, the other two are first time viewings. All of them can be found on Netflix (Canada), if you have another version of Netflix then you will have to see if its there.

Its a longer post so let’s check it out!

Look Out, Officer (1990)

look out officer

Director: Sze Yu Lau

Cast: Stephen Chow, Bill Tung, Stanley Sui-Fan Fung, Vivian Chen, Kong Fong, Siu-Wai Mui

After police officer Biao is murdered, his soul cannot be at rest for his murder has been written off as a suicide. Therefore the heavens send him back to Earth as a spirit to find his ‘savior’ who will help him clear his name. Sing, a rookie officer, is the savior and in return for finding Biao’s killer, Biao must get him a girlfriend and a promotion. – IMDB

Look Out Officer is one of the earlier films in Stephen Chow’s filmography coming right after 1989’s Saint of Gamblers that gave him the main character and revealing that he was able to be funny. This is one of the rare few movies where he carries the movie with other comedic actors instead of his partner of crime, Man-Tat Ng. However, it delivers so well. In some ways, its absolutely absurd and silly but there are some great moments that land well. Plus, it adds in a supernatural and crime element to the story. The effects are pretty much dated and fairly laughable but being a comedy, it just adds in to the great moments. To be honest, I actually forgot about some of the supporting and cameo roles here and how they were part of this movie but has gone through the years to bigger and better things in different areas of entertainment.

Perhaps because this was one of the handful of Stephen Chow movies that I watched when I was young that there is a nostalgic love that I have for it. However, something here works well although it does merge itself well with having a decent knowledge of the Hong Kong society especially with their emphasis on the crimes and the undercover part. Its not a perfect movie but a truly entertaining one as it works something like the spirit helping him, Biao is something like the genie to Aladdin who has the ability to destroy his plans if he so wishes. Bill Tung and Stanley Fung are both incredible actors on their own and both have a decent career so their presence definitely adds onto the overall success of the film to help some of the jokes here land and for Stephen Chow to work together with.

Doubles Cause Troubles (1989)

doubles cause troubles

Director (and writer): Jing Wong

Cast: Carol DoDo Cheng, Maggie Cheung, Wilson Lam, Pak-Cheung Chan

When the tenant in their flat dies under suspicious circumstances, two bickering cousins are forced to navigate both sides of the law. – Netflix

Before Maggie Cheung got all serious with her acting role choices, she did a lot of comedic acting roles in the 80s and 90s films. On the topic of Stephen Chow from before, she did actually play a love interest for Stephen Chow in All’s Well That Ends Well. In Doubles Cause Troubles, we have Maggie Cheung playing opposite talented actress Dodo Cheng who honestly is known for her humor and her overall empowering presence. Both of these ladies held their own as they played cousins bickering and eventually having to work together, realizing that they have a pretty good connection. In all the random silliness they get caught into for this, the focus here may be the crime elements and the other characters all hilarious to watch as well, especially Pak-Cheung Chan, however, they are the stars here as their presence is undeniable. They are the show.

Doubles Cause Troubles is a little over the top but the movie is a typical Jing Wong with a lot of signature comedic style that Stephen Chow films have also. His writing and directing is incredibly on point. There are so many familiar faces in this film, especially if you are familiar with the Hong Kong film industry. Especially Wilson Lam, who I’ve heard has been recently spotted coming back out of the woodwork to acting again. He was the non-comedic element that kept the film grounded in the crime element. The plot is a little everywhere as it masks the bickering for love and the crime elements of who is trustworthy. Its saving grace is how easily its two leading ladies can deliver all the jokes and make it an overall enjoyable experience packed with laugh out loud moments.

The Mad Monk (1993)

the mad monk

Director: Siu-Tung Ching & Johnnie To

Cast: Stephen Chow, Maggie Cheung, Man-Tat Ng, Anita Mui, Michael Wai-Man Chan

Internationally proclaimed comic genius Stephen Chow must change the lives of radiant prostitute Maggie Cheung Man-yuk, filthy beggar Anthony Wong, and a killer in this heavenly comedy directed by masterful new wave filmmaker Johnnie To. – IMDB

A double feature for Stephen Chow and Maggie Cheung in this segment, what are the chances, right? Suffice to say that I’m a big fan of Stephen Chow but even he has films that I don’t quite like so much and The Mad Monk definitely falls into that one. Its not exactly the jokes or the acting that I don’t like but rather the overall sillier and dumber approach here that gives off this off-hilter humor that I’m not a big fan of. There are some too over the top moments than preferred. The Mad Monk lacks in terms of being more unique.

I feel bad saying that mostly because the talented Siu-Tung Ching and Johnnie To paired up to co-direct this film. Siu-Tung Ching comes off making 3 movies each for The Swordsman and A Chinese Ghost Story, which I have a little memory of but have never revisited. While Johnnie To had come off of working on Justice My Foot with Stephen Chow, which happens to be one of my faves as well, its shocking to think that maybe this film might have worked if I was younger or discovered it when I was younger. It does have some strong cast here aside from the ones mentioned before like Anthony Wong who played one of the three people he need to save. Anthony Wong can be a funny man but he has some dramatic roles as well and is a very well-rounded actor.

Its hard to fault anything here because I think the movie delivered as it had wanted to. Everything fit together except my mindset and comedy preference and that usually is the most subjective element to making comedies.