Hot young stars are the order of the day in director
Alan Mak's new romance Stolen Love. Hot young
hunk Raymond Lam stars as Rick, a successful architect
who discovers he may have a forgotten past. He gets
hit by a car while lost in thought over an advertisement
featuring Angela Lok (Rain Li), a popular novelist.
When he awakes, he finds he's lost his creative abilities.
Only when he's near Angela does the spark return. So
what does he do? He moves into her building, of course.
However, it isn't that easy.
Rick's current project is supposed to tear down Angela's
apartment building, evicting her and the local residents
(including Wong Yat-Fei and Wyman Wong). She fights
him at first, but as you'd expect, her defenses wear
down and the two become friends. Even more, Angela senses
a hidden past between she and Rick, too. The two resolve
to discover more about it, and along the way their feelings
grow for one another.
The set-up for this high-schooler
romance is exceptionally elaborate, promising at hidden
plot points not revealed until the final ten minutes
of the film. Until then, all we can do is satisfy ourselves
with pretty people mugging for each other and the camera.
Watching Rick and Angela fall in love is passably entertaining,
but not much else. Rain Li's acting is extremely raw.
She's pretty, but her acting consists of pouting and
throwing cute fits, much like every Hong Kong ingénue
does in their first big role. Raymond Lam fares better.
His presence is well-suited to this sort of romantic
fluff, and boy does he have attractive hair!
However, despite whatever joys
pretty people bring, the movie is just a collection
of plot devices geared to bring the characters together.
After a minor crisis (They want to tear down the building!),
we get to discover what the big mystery of their stolen
past is. And...well, I can't give it away because Ain't-It-Cool-News
demands that reviews be spoiler-free, but I will say
that the big revelation smacks of deux ex machina.
It certainly explains everything, but it's simply fiction
Director Alan Mak has made
two fluffy romances in a row now. One wishes he could
get back to the jazzy cool of Rave Fever or the
entertaining bloodshed of A War Named Desire.
Mak does throw in a sly reference to Rave Fever
by having Joe Ma appear as the same character he did
in that. What it means is anybody's guess. Rave Fever
wasn't really that popular, so referencing it seems
to smack of self-indulgence and nothing more. (Kozo