# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
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Carry On Dancing (1988) Directed by: Leung Po-Chi & Kam Kwok-Leung

With the parade of stars and recognizable faces appearing in a montage during the opening credits (an unusual move from Hong Kong cinema), Carry On Dancing introduces a light vibe that surely won't demand much from you. Going almost completely impenetrable from this point, our basic plot about twin sisters played by Cora Miao sees them switch places. The one in the asylum goes out into the real world to claim alimony from her husband (James Wong) and the other introvert one finds love with a kind doctor (Richard Ng) within the hospital walls. Then other stuff happens that doesn't fall into place sense-wise. It's fun to see Cora Miao animated and a certain sweetness can be picked up from Richard Ng and Mang Hoi's performances but without any other points coming through, Carry On Dancing isn't even remotely amusing. Not gravely bad to the point that we instead want crass and low-brow akin to a Wong Jing experience but considering the work of Leung Po-Chi (Hong Kong 1941) and Kam Kwok-Leung (actor in Purple Storm), we're tempted. Sandy Lam, Eric Tsang, Meg Lam, Michael Chow, Rachel Lee, Stanley Fung and Charlie Chin also appear.

Carry On Hotel (1988) Directed by: Jeff Lau

The stars are all on parade in this episodic comedy set in and around a hotel. Directed by Jeff Lau, you could mistake Carry On Hotel for a Lunar New Year comedy judging by the cast and general lack of effort. No, this puppy was actually released during the height of summer in 1988, an era where it was possible to gather up the likes of Jacky Cheung, Joey Wong, Richard Ng, Pat Ha, Cecilia Yip, Kent Cheng, Eric Tsang, Charlie Chin and Cherie Chung in one movie. Lau's direction for most of these episodes only land on semi-amusing but is carried by that undeniable 80s Hong Kong cinema charm. The odd detour into black comedy for the Eric Tsang, Pat Ha and Cherie Chung segment is welcome and Richard Ng is an absolute riot in a possible nod to his famous shenanigans in Winners And Sinners. Here's he plays a thief who thinks he can hypnotize whoever he wants and his apparently grand ninja tricks are tried out on the hotel staff as well! It's also here Jeff Lau's comedic momentum is at its finest but Carry On Hotel only offers up a glimpse into what he can really do at his best.

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Carry On, Pickpocket (1982) Directed by: Sammo Hung

Not frequently mentioned modern action-comedy from Sammo Hung, his first production after the seminal The Prodigal Son. Playing a pickpocket alongside Frankie Chan, there's terrific focus put on making those types of scenes smooth and with the right flow. Some worthwhile comedy from Sammo and Frankie crops up but Richard Ng steals the show and injects the best comedic sparks for Sammo's frame. Also of great caliber is the action by Hung's team with the primary focus being on power despite the light nature of the film. This direction makes the film lose a little bit since the finale goes all out gory at times but overall, Carry On, Pickpocket delivers a fun, entertaining time with the odd, shocking blood spurt and Richard Ng being Richard Ng. Well-rounded in other words. Also with Lau Hak Suen, Deannie Yip, Didi Pang, Peter Chan Lung, Dick Wei, James Tien and Paul Wong. Chin Yuet Sang has a fun little cameo as a disco dancing waiter.

Carry On Yakuzas (1989) Directed by: Phillip Chan

Boxer Charlie (Michael Chan) defies the demand by Japanese gangsters to be defeated in a championship match in Japan so himself and his trainer (Lau Kar-Wing) are cornered afterwards. Saved by a rival gang to the one led by Luk Chuen (with a henchmen being Phillip Ko), Charlie is taken into the family of the elderly boss that saves him and pretends himself to be the leader of the Marlboro gang in Hong Kong. When the elderly boss is eventually assassinated, the widow and her daughter Wakoko travels to Hong Kong where the charade has to be orchestrated in order to make them believe Chan and company are in fact a gang. Although their secret is easily revealed by the Japanese guests, it doesn't stop them from being part of the Yakuza rivalry and living up to bonds of loyalty...

Phillip Chan offers up a subdued yet appropriately moody action-comedy. Having Michael Chan play against type by ACTING as the hard hero works more as the movie rolls on and although never laugh out loud funny, there is amusement on display (best in the case of Deannie Yip who acts as a Filipino maid at one point). Issues of cultural clashing and loyalty transcending country boundaries isn't equal to refined storytelling but director Chan does decent in this regard and mixes dramatic family issues and eventually intense action to entertaining effect. Also with Dennis Chan, Cheung Kwok-Keung and director Phillip Chan himself.

Carry On Wise Guy (1980) Directed by: Lau Kar-Wing

A monk (Gordon Liu) is in possession of a map the Japanese and co-conspirators are after. Two thieves (Lau Ga-Yung and Eric Tsang) think the box the monk carries contains money. Violence, martial arts and hilarity ensues. It's all here. Only problem is, much of the content falls flat. Still a fairly good looking production considering it's working with a lower budget clearly and Gordon Liu in particular has a movie-star or a genre-star quality about him here. More of the straight man versus the Lau Ga-Yung/Eric Tsang comedic act, the film gets seriously slowed down thanks to its awful attempts at comedic banter and slapstick. While content such as the trio encountering real hopping vampires and fake hopping vampires sounds like there's comedic colour to be had, in reality Lau Kar-Wing's direction is rather uninspiring. Springing to life in a greater fashion when the Lau Brothers action choreography takes over the frame, it's at its most impressive when Gordon Liu is involved. The focus on less one on one and instead intricate and acrobatic group fights (including a rather adult one involving a prostitute) stands out in a fine way too and it raises the interest level of Carry On Wise Guy considerably. Still, it's at least 15 minutes too long and not a memorable movie within a very crowded genre of mostly failed kung-fu comedies. Also known as Warrior From Shaolin. Lily Li and Kong Do also appear.

The Case Of The Cold Fish (1995) Directed by: Jamie Luk

Ever wanted to see a film where a huge aspect of it is dedicated to making fun of Michael Wong? Jamie Luk gives you the chance with the amusingly named The Case Of The Cold Fish. Wong plays an SDU trained cop who's sent to a village on Tai O island to solve a murder case. In fact it's probably the only criminal case in the village for quite some time, as evident in the laid back nature to the local police force (lead by a very funny Michael Chow).

While very low-budget, director Luk gets superb comic situations from his characters and surroundings. Not only is Wong made fun of constantly because of his gwailo looks (and Chow calls him Jerk, Sir throughout), the cast of characters are a bunch of originals who's not about to let a criminal investigation disrupt their lives just because someone quote unquote important is handling the case. The banter that occurs between characters carries the film wonderful well also, making The Case Of The Cold Fish one of those underrated and undiscovered efforts out of Hong Kong cinema. Not that Michael Wong is progressing as an actor in this one but he's a good sport, being the butt of many jokes (including why he's speaking English most of the time). Shing Fui-On co-stars as a fellow cop called, wait for it, Keanu Reeves!

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HK Flix.com
Yesasia.com

Cash On Delivery (1992) Directed by: Terry Tong

Laughter! Romance! Sex! Murder! Courtroom drama! You get this and more in Terry Tong's (Coolie Killer) wildly crowded (and crowd pleasing) final film. The above is what he spends time jumping in between as he portrays the life of one gigolo (Simon Yam) turned upside down when a client of his (Veronica Yip, back in smut territory after a fine performance in Call Girl 92) goes postal. Longing for love after he's fulfilled the duty of impregnating her, she gets seriously ticked off when Simon is actually in love with lawyer Sandy (Sandra Ng)...

Tong scores points in the low-brow area of the comedy since he has Michael Chow to work with and obviously the bonk-a-thon featuring Veronica and Simon is entirely welcome, if not a little bizarre. There's also a great deal of unconventional casting on display here as it's Sandra Ng who gets the be the actual object of desire, not a common occurrence at this time. Then when Tong takes cues from Fatal Attraction, you realize what an oddly compelling piece of smut this is.

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Yesasia.com

Casino (1998) Directed by: Billy Tang

Gaining word of mouth due to it being funded by the triad boss it is a biopic of, Casino still is a quickie gangster-entry of messy proportions. Talking with a journalist (Kennix Kwok), Simon Yam as Giant recaps the days of late 80s/early 90s in Macau where he and best friend Liu (Alex Fong) rose to fame. Now in a deadly conflict with rival boss Ping (Frankie Ng), the games of twists and deception are in motion...

Billy Tang (employing past cast & crew largely) had fun with the triad genre in Sexy And Dangerous but the treatment here is all over the place. Chunks of the script was either filmed, subsequently cut or simply never written as no character except for maybe Alex Fong (the better performer of the film) has any hint of depth. Best example of this poor treatment being a short appearance by Ada Choi as Giant's wife and all of a sudden we're subjected to what apparently is a dramatic backstory to their relationship... dealt with in 2 minutes via dialogue. It doesn't pan out to be cheap, quick and possess a desire to provide a epic production about Macau gangster life. Your typical wide eyed and large performers occupy the flick (Frankie Ng "best" representing this) and the odd satirical moments of millions of followers constantly talking on their mobile phones and how quickly the different sides mobilize their squads should be put to use in a better movie that actually does satirize all of this. That I think Billy Tang is capable of. Kent Cheng and Ben Ng also appear.

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HK Flix.com

The Casino (1972) Directed by: Cheung Chan-Chak

Fighting gambling with gambling is the motive for Luo Tianguang (Yueh Hua) and this endangers his and his wife's (Lily Ho) life (she was a former head of a casino as well). There's possibly a more layered story to tell here of how corrupt forces win and that righteousness gets you nowhere but what we get in The Casino during its 80 minute running time is effective despite. Director Cheung knows how to showcase the Shaw Brothers sets to good effect, Yueh Hua and Lily Ho are both iconic while the bloodshed is taken up to more creative levels than usual with Shaw Brothers (Wu Ma's finger cutting being the best example and quite frankly close to shocking). Any violent confrontations comes with a hard aura too, making The Casino take on the feeling of hard hitting action of any Chor Yuen movie of the time (in particular The Killer). Sek Kin co-stars.

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Casino Raiders (1989) Directed by: Wong Jing & Jimmy Heung

Reportedly released just a few months before God Of Gamblers made the gambling genre take off in the late 90s, Casino Raiders has the upper hand because of a more consistent tone throughout. One that is unexpectedly dark coming from Wong Jing (who co-directed with Jimmy Heung). Character- and melodrama is certainly not handled with the grace and subtlety that's up there with the best of them but overall the directors manage to involve and have a likable pairing in Andy Lau & Alan Tam. The women, especially Rosamund Kwan, get less stellar development though (and less stellar treatment physically) but with Casino Raiders, after its well staged gambling finale, Wong Jing has excised a few dark demons and displayed the filmmaking skills that rarely are allowed to breathe. God Of Gamblers will always remain a more dear favourite to me because of Chow Yun-Fat but this effort deserves an honorable mention as well.

Buy the DVD at:
HK Flix.com
Yesasia.com

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