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The Banquet

Top row: Tony Leung Ka-Fai, Rosamund Kwan, Stephen Chow, Eric Tsang, Carol Cheng and Richard Ng.
Bottom row: Carina Lau, Maggie Cheung, George Lam, Jamie Luk, Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Jacky Cheung.
Chinese: 豪門夜宴  
Year: 1991  
Director: Tsui Hark, Clifton Ko Chi-Sum, Joe Cheung Tung-Cho, Alfred Cheung Kin-Ting
Producer: Ng See-Yuen, John Sham Kin-Fun  
Cast: Eric Tsang Chi-Wai, Carol "DoDo" Cheng Yu-Ling, Richard Ng Yiu-Hon, Jacky Cheung Hok-Yau, Sammo Hung Kam-Bo, Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Rosamund Kwan Chi-Lam, Tony Leung Ka-Fai, George Lam Chi-Cheung, John Sham Kin-Fun, Karl Maka, Simon Yam Tat-Wah, Stephen Chow Sing-Chi, Ng Man-Tat, Aaron Kwok Fu-Sing, Leon Lai Ming, Lau Kar-Leung, Anita Mui Yim-Fong, Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk, Michael Hui Koon-Man, Lee Heung-Kam, Andy Lau Tak-Wah, Joey Wong Cho-Yin, Gong Li, Leslie Cheung Kwok-Wing, Anthony Chan Yau, Sylvia Chang, Teresa Mo Sun-Kwan, Sally Yeh, Jan Lam Hoi-Fung, Eric Kot Man-Fai, Chor Yuen, Loletta Lee Lai-Chun, David Wu, Phillip Chan Yan-Kin, Kenneth Tsang Kong, Bill Tung Bui, Lydia Shum Din-Ha, Carina Lau Ka-Ling, Kara Hui Ying-Hung, Michelle Reis, Raymond Wong Bak-Ming, James Wong Jim, Gabriel “Turtle” Wong Yat-San, Waise Lee Chi-Hung, Gloria Yip Wan-Yi, Yuen Tak, Chin Kar-Lok, Ti Lung, Kwan Hoi-San, Fennie Yuen Kit-Ying, Sandra Ng Kwun-Yu, May Lo Mei-Mei, Alan Tam Wing-Lun, Lau Siu-Ming, Nat Chan Bak-Cheung, Wu Fung, Tommy Wong Kwong-Leung, Guk Fung, Joe Cheung Tung-Cho, Jamie Luk Kin-Ming, David Chiang (Keung Dai-Wai), Wan Yeung-Ming, Lung Fong, Leung Ka-Yan, Billy Lau Nam-Kwong, Teddy Robin Kwan, Lowell Lo Koon-Ting, Law Kar-Ying, Mimi Chu Mi-Mi, Fung Hak-On
The Skinny: Benefit film for flood victims in China that's notable for an insane amount of star cameos. While occasionally amusing, the film isn't really that good. Still, its noble intentions prevent us from roundly trashing it.
by Kozo:

All-star wackiness that was put together as a quickie benefit for flood victims in China. The plot of the film is basic enough: annoying developer Tsang Siu-Chi (Eric Tsang) schemes to land a multi-billion dollar contract with the Prince of the Kuwaiti Royal Family. The Prince (George Lam in a decidedly unconvincing performance) is a filial son who regrets the passing of his father, so Tsang seeks out his father (Richard Ng) to help him hoodwink the Prince.

Unfortunately, Tsang hasn't seen his dad for ten years, but still needs him, so he pretends to have cancer to lure his father home right before the Prince's visit. Aiding him are his shrewish wife (Carol Cheng) and kiss-ass assistant (Tony Leung Chiu-Wai). Meanwhile, rival devloper Boss Hung (Sammo Hung) plots with workaholic agent Jacky Cheung to steal the contract. All this, plus tons of cameos.

Pretending that this film qualifies as anything but a throwaway lark would be idiotic. The story is strung together with the subtlety of a screaming contest, and the plot turns and twists are hackneyed and lame. The film's ultimate message (Tsang must learn to be filial) is a well-meaning one, but the steps taken to get there are far from creative and/or interesting.

However, everyone involved (including directors Tsui Hark and Clifton Ko) did this film for charity, so decrying their lack of creativity or ingenuity is unfair and even downright rude. If this were supposed to be a good movie, then they probably wouldn't have enlisted 95% of the HK Entertainment circle to appear in the film. The cameos and walk-ons are obviously meant to satisfy fans of "spot the star" games, so The Banquet ultimately does everything it's supposed to. In the end, the most pressing issue about The Banquet may be the whereabouts of some obvious missing HK celebrities. More specifically: were Jackie Chan and Chow Yun-Fat too busy to appear in this film? (Kozo 2002)

Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Mei Ah Laser
Widescreen (cropped from 1.85:1 to 1.66:1)
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
English and Chinese Subtitles

image courtesy of Mei Ah Laser Disc Co., Ltd. Copyright ©2002-2017 Ross Chen