# 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

Page 01 | Page 02 | Page 03

Just Heroes (1989) Directed by: John Woo & Wu Ma

Just Heroes was conceived as a charity movie for legendary but struggling director Chang Cheh. Rounding up most of the old school stars alongside some of the contemporary profiles (sans heroic bloodshed icon Chow Yun-Fat) and the hottest director of modern Hong Kong action cinema should've resulted in overwhelming success right? Disappointingly no as Just Heroes flopped and Chang himself ended up donating the money to further the study of cinema. So one of the greatest Shaw Brother's directors sadly had to fade out as someone whose movies was not desired anymore.

Veteran screenwriter I Kuang, John Woo & Wu should've known it had been proven that a little substance and depth to a triad actioner did lure people into the theatres during the era (although the presence of Chow Yun-Fat also helped). Here they stack the triad movie clichés high instead, messes up any entertainment value by talking the movie to death and even the action sees Woo on autopilot. Out of that grows a generic filmmaker of heroic bloodshed. To be fair, the film was co-helmed officially by Wu Ma and unofficially by Danny Lee and David Chiang.

The sole fun of this film is the plethora of old school performers in major to walk on roles but the most jarring casting when viewed today's eyes is Stephen Chow in a purely dramatic role prior to his breakthrough as Hong Kong's King of Comedy. Also, in a clever touch, Woo has fun mocking the impact A Better Tomorrow had on the Hong Kong youth as the film features an all too avid fan of the film, leading to the all so standard subtext that triad life is bad for ya!

Hong Kong versions were cut for violence as was a few minutes of plot twists before the action climax. MIA released both an uncut VHS and Laserdisc in the UK and currently there is a French uncut edition on dvd (no English subtitles).

Justice, My Foot! (1992) Directed by: Johnnie To

A monster hit for Stephen Chow in 1992, Justice, My Foot! very much seems to lean towards a local appeal through a fast talking show and many verbal exchanges. But even if this non-Cantonese speaking viewer only picks up a fraction of the possibly IMPOSSIBLE to translate jokes, fact remains that it's a very entertaining outing as directed by Johnnie To. Essentially Chow is a fast talking lawyer who's earned a living winning cases for moral and immoral people by any means possible. Securing a ton of wealth but a lot of children of his that has passed on early, he makes a promise to his wife (Anita Mui) to retire and focus on running an inn business instead in order to save the life of the next son. The wife does stumble upon a case she convinces him to take though, despite their agreement.

At least as translated on the remastered dvd by IVL, the movie is very easy to follow, often funny but the majority of the aura present here leans towards highly amusing. Which is not an alienating thing when the performers like Chow and Anita Mui (as his kung-fu wife always getting him out of trouble in wonderful Ching Siu-Tung directed action) banter extremely well and our leads are simply on here. It doesn't make Justice, My Foot! THE Stephen Chow recommendation. Far from it but in remastered and re-translated form, it comes through as a very funny, comforting and energetic period comedy. Imagine what it was like for audiences clued in to references and knowing the language. You don't rake in nearly 50 million Hong Kong dollars at the box office just by showing up. Also with Carrie Ng, Ng Man-Tat, Paul Chun, Eddy Ko, Leung Kar-Yan and Kingdom Yuen.

Just Like Weather (1986) Directed by: Allen Fong

Allen Fong (Ah Ying, Father And Son) portrays the strains of marriage through the eyes of a very young couple (Christine Lee & Chan Hung-Nin). They're trying to agree on whether moving to America is an option but they have conflicts of their own to solve regarding pregnancy, work situation etc etc. The content and makings of a sappy drama...normally.

Blurring the line slightly between fiction and documentary with a non-linear narrative, these aspects becomes puzzlers at times as Fong clearly stages fiction but seems to bring in real life at the same time (he appears as the interviewer). But in the end, Just Like Weather is far from sappy and instead all about Fong the excellent, low-key observer. Kirk Wong appears in an uncredited cameo.

Fong got his third Best Director prize at the Hong Kong Film Awards as well as his editing team and lead actress Christine Lee.

Buy the VCD at:
HK Flix.com

Just Love (1992) Directed by: Lam Yi-Hung

There's a certain comfort watching a director like Lam Yi-Hung direct Cat III movies. Low budget cheapies with little aspirations other than to provide the hungry adult crowd with hopefully a sensation or two, Lam also proved to be at times an excellent visual artist when it came to erotica. Scenes that stood out amidst an otherwise zero budget frame. No such luck in Just Love though with its reincarnation story line and wizard on the hunt for the reincarnated Chan Pooi-Kei. Muddled, told like a soap opera and with erotic scenes with zero visual passion or even passion to want to be there shooting them, mark Just Love down as non-essential Lam Yi-Hung and hit up The Other Side of Dolls instead.

Page 01 | Page 02 | Page 03