Reviews written by Phoenix Lin
The Sword Stained With Royal Blood1 people found this review helpful
October 5, 2007 Beautiful Swordplay
I had the movie for several months & viewed a couple weeks ago; I don't know why I waited so long. The classic is beautifully re-mastered, with adequate subtitles and there is some impressive swordplay that only the gang can deliver. The flashbacks are a touch numbing but it moves along well and keeps the story tidy and understandable. Definately worth in DVD format.
Rob-B-Hood (Extended Edition) (Hong Kong Version)June 9, 2007 Corny...but entertaining
The usual entertaining romp that only Jackie can provide. There were some unnecessary scenes that felt more like a failed attempt to give the story/plot or characters some depth. There also seemed to be some spots that seemed like sloppy editing but weren't too distracting. Some of the extra features like press conferences were not subtitled but all in all, there was the usual deleted/behind-the-scenes, trailers that make DVDs worth while. Jackie needs to realize that his speciality is not dramatic acting...but it's Jackie. Gotta love the mini extended cameos of stars like Nicholas Tse/Daniel Wu that Jackie movies seem to provide. All in all, this is another Jackie installment.
King Of Beggars (Taiwan version)May 27, 2007 Following the recipe
This particular Stephen Chow movie follows the typical Kung-fu comedy recipe on a familiar character & is nothing spectacular. Doesn't exhibit high levels of martial arts but there was an interesting display of a sleeping Buddha style. A few Stephen Chow antics were thrown in there but seemed almost inappropirate. Subtitles on very few occasions were obstructed by white background or clothing. Don't recall any other issues; no special features noted.
When Fortune Smiles (1990) (VCD) (Hong Kong Version)(1)Our Price: US$6.99May 27, 2007 Quirky slapstick
This being an earlier Stephen Chow movie, it initially followed more of a Jackie Chan slapstick comedy without the stunning stunts. However, as the movie went along it seemed to become increasingly quirky where I gradually transitioned from confusion to amusement. The story seemed to fall apart ever-so slightly but ended as happily & abruptly as it could. Subtitles were clear, picture clean. No other special features indicated. Not quite the Stephen Chow style that his later movies have blossomed into. Not really a movie for Anthony Wong fans since he doesn't flex too much of his acting ability & has minimal screen time as the bad 80's hairdo villain.
Cat VS RatMay 11, 2007 Hit or miss
Fu Sheng isn't that likable of a character in this one but both Fu Sheng & Adam Chengs display of martial arts prowess is impressive & leaves you wanting more. Unfortunately, you are left hanging and the silliness that the story is exhibiting becomes more annoying than comedic. The VCD/film is beautifully remastered & subtitles are clear. However, based on the story-line, it may not be worth paying the several dollars more for the DVD.
Skinny Tiger & Fatty DragonMay 5, 2007 Sammo's buddy cop movie
I guess action stars had to participate in a buddy-cop movie & this was Sammo's. Nothing spectacular plot wise but the usual, nicely executed good cop/bad cop antic confirms the closeness of Sammo Hung & Karl Mak's characters. Lau Ka Wing provides a formidable villain at the end; so of course the square off between him & Sammo delivers the goods to the audience. I suppose this DVD is worth it's price & enjoyable for how dated the film is. Subtitles & film quatlity are adequately clear.
Kick Boxer (Taiwan version)April 14, 2007 Yuen Biao's charm
Yuen Biao's charm blazes through on screen making this a near favorite. The story moves along & progresses understandably with the high flying kicks & acrobatic fights that he is capable of. Enjoyable & collectable for any Yuen Biao fan. This is one that actually has a "feel good" closure to the story so that should make it extra enjoyable. (since any fan would know how dramatic tragedy also seems to be a growing trend of Yuen Biao's)
Curry & Pepper (DTS Version) (Golden Collection) (Hong Kong Version)(1)Our Price: US$13.99April 14, 2007 Typical buddy cop flick
(I don't have this "Golden" edition) Like all buddy cop movies there has to be a conflict that occurs with the buddies as well as with their precinct, this of course delivers both. The characters themselves are quirky like the comedic actors that portray them. Enjoyable but much better back in the day. Stephen Chow delivers his boyish good-looks with his classic comedy flatpan affect that works for him.
Saulabi (DVD) (US Version)April 14, 2007 Loss of consciousness
Another attempt at making some artistic swordplay, faking like it has some depth whether it is romance, honor or a conflict of both. Nothing memorable for swordsmanship & some bad moments of editing where you can't even make a mental excuse for the movie & say it was some wierd out of sequence flashback. There were some minor comparisons of Korean & Japanese culture to twitch an eyebrow to (trying for a Romeo/Juliet approach) but once again Saulabi leaves you dead in the water.
Sword In The Moon (US Version)April 14, 2007 Trying too hard
Beautifully done but it felt like the director was trying to be so artistic that it took away from the story & even the depth of the characters themselves. You finish the movie with a furrowed brow, a touch of confusion, a shrug & maybe a huff of disappointment. I didn't mark anything significant with the swordplay either other than the semi magnitude of the two opposing parties. However, not even the flashback of how the two characters started as brothers didn't make an impact on the connection audiences should have felt for them. Overall, disappointing for the quality of film.
The Moon Warriors (Eng Dubbed) (DTS Version) (US Version)
The Moon Warriors (Eng Dubbed) (DTS Version) (US Version) DVD Region All(3)Our Price: US$14.99April 14, 2007 Killer Whale?
Have an earlier US release/subtitled version of this & it remains a classic HK wire-action movie with speeded up fights but some impressive choreography. The characters are likable enough with the very youthful Andy Lau, late diva Anita Mui(who's character is a really annoying spoiled brat of a princess) & the young, minimal screen time Maggie Cheung. Much of the story seemed shallow with attempts to give the romance or tragedy some depth that are more appealing to teenie bop audiences than anything else. One question: What's up with the killer whale?
A Better Tomorrow (DVD) (China Version)April 14, 2007 Gun slingin' HK style
The most classic HK gun slingin' movie & quite possibly Chow Yun Fat's most memorable character. Ti Lung proves he is still the king of tragedy with thoughtful stares, pensive furrows & deep dramatic pauses. If you've never seen this & you love HK style action, this is the classic to own.
Clans Of IntrigueApril 14, 2007 Borderline Outrageous
Luckily for Ti Lung, the majority of his classic swordsman films are wonderfully memorable. This one being one of those. This is a wierd plot, gender bending just to twist it up some more. Borderline ridiculous but teetering just so it doesn't lose the audience. Can I just say, impaling someone with your self-amputated arm is wicked cool to do to your enemy!
Look Out, Officer (1990) (VCD) (Digitally Remastered) (Hong Kong Version)(1)Our Price: US$10.992 people found this review helpful
April 12, 2007 Genisis of quirkiness
In this film Stephen Chow is still utilizing his quirky-boyish image to rally the attention & help his character needs in this spiritual buddy-cop movie. Standard slapstick gags drizzle through to move the shallow plot along but everything pretty much wraps up nice & tidy.
Shanghai Shanghai (1990) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
Shanghai Shanghai (1990) (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3(2)Our Price: US$10.99April 12, 2007 Quirky test run?
I don't know how much influence Yuen Biao had in this film but it has a distinct earthy "Yuen Biao" feel to it; like the majority of the films he's in have. The film is a touch grainy like the whole film should be in sepia tones giving it a classic era atmosphere but it doesn't save the story much. There are some interesting showdowns in this as only Sammo & Yuen can provide but definately doesn't seem like they had quite honed their ideas/choreography. If you love this pairing as well as Wing chun, check out Prodigal Son, a much better development compared to this composition.
The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)1 people found this review helpful
April 12, 2007 Satisfaction gauranteed
Regretfully I was only able to obtain a VCD copy of this movie but anything beats seeing this movie scratchy & dubbed in corny English. I forgot how long the set-up to the story was but once you've gained admittance to the Shaolin Temple it is all classic training that you never forget. (It's what anyone who is a fan of pugilistic films remember the best) Worth the DVD & I'm seriously considering getting a copy in this format.
Seven Swords (2005) (VCD) (Hong Kong Version)1 people found this review helpful
April 12, 2007 Borderline stodgy
Tsui Hark's style has reverted to wanting to cram "as much material into the shortest time period possible" & that's not fair to those individuals who would actually like to understand what they are viewing. There are some nice shots whether it is a moment of character or plot development but those are quickly minimized by the super-sonic speed of the entire story. After a while you stop trying to comprehend & go into a pseudo-comatose state. Not that it's much of an improvement but the TV mini-series with Vincent Zhao provides slightly more insight in that the story & plodding pace is understandable.
Running on Karma (DTS Version) (US Version)April 12, 2007 Karma Police
This was my first Johnny To film & I really didn't know what to expect but quickly realized this was a type of drama-thriller. I was impressed & I didn't feel insulted as an audience member because you felt a good amount of thought/planning/effort was placed behind this film/story to stimulate those mental juices. Not a new concept if you're familiar with Buddhist philosophy or how karma(positive or negative) functions, but a good brain teaser for most.
Wheels On Meals (1984) (DVD) (Digitally Remastered) (Joy Sales Version) (Hong Kong Version)
Wheels On Meals (1984) (DVD) (Digitally Remastered) (Joy Sales Version) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3(3)Our Price: US$10.991 people found this review helpful
April 12, 2007 Vaudeville banter
Not my favorite movie of the "3" but it provides some "dated" action. (Car chases really aren't my thing anyway) There's your usual brotherly bantering and action sequences. Definately enjoyed Project A & Dragons Forever over this film, but it still remains a classic action comedy in the style only these 3 can provide.
Dragons Forever (DVD) (China Version)1 people found this review helpful
April 12, 2007 Bring back this Trio
I miss seeing these 3 together because there are just classic scenes of them showing off their personal styles in combinations with each other or competing against each other. The story is simple enough since that's all they need as an excuse to throw them together for a good ol' fashioned brawl. Stunts are definately not like they used to be, the ones in this seem particularly brutal & you appreciate them more because the scene/stunt is highlighted. There are some scenes missing that don't really go along with the story other than minor character development but nothing really missed. Just sit back & enjoy the action.