Monday, July 19th, 2010
Great Moments in Hong Kong Cinema #3: Chan Ho-Nam Beats a Guy with a Plastic Chair in YOUNG AND DANGEROUS
Don’t be swayed by the man’s innocent act. He’s dangerous. And, uh, young, too.
[Periodically, Ronin on Empty will be taking a look back at some Hong Kong cinema classics, albeit with a specific emphasis on “Great Moments” — i.e. classic scenes that no Hong Kong cinema fan (old or new) should miss. Of course, “classic” will not only entail super-cool, gobsmacking moments, but also the downright ridiculous stuff, too. The numbers — #1, #2, etc. — are not indicators of ranking, but merely a way to keep a running tally of how many “great moments” we can list here. Readers are welcome to send in their own fave scenes as well.]
While studies say we’ve become increasingly numb to movie violence in recent years, I would argue that there are some filmic displays of violent acts that stick with you long after the film has ended. Perhaps Joe Pesci’s demise in Casino (1995) really got to you. Maybe the torture porn gore of the Saw and Hostel series was too much for you. Or maybe you even flinched at what that carpenter had to suffer in Mel “I’m not racist, I’m insane” Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ (2004).
No matter. All of those violent scenes pale in comparison to what poor Shing Fui-On (RIP: Big Sillyhead) had to endure in the first installment of the Young and Dangerous series. In the film, LoveHKFilm.com’s favorite actor, Ekin Cheng, plays a young and dangerous (naturally!) triad member named Chan Ho-Nam who has a bone to pick with Brother Sau (Shing Fui-On). For reasons I’ve never particularly understood, Ekin is absolutely obnoxious as Ho-Nam in this first film. Thankfully, his character improved in the sequels. Still, it was this first film in which we were introduced to his altogether unconventional triad weapon of choice — a plastic chair. Prepare to wince at the ferocity!