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Fantasy Romance
Year: 1991
Director: Taylor Wong Tai-Loi
Cast: Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Joey Wong Cho-Yin, Deannie Yip Tak-Han, Paul Chun Pui, Tin Fung, Wai Lei, Wong Chi-Keung
The Skinny: Cheap modern knock-off of A Chinese Ghost Story featuring the original Chinese Ghost herself, Joey Wong. That doesn't necessarily make this a good movie, though.
by Kozo:
     This modern retelling of A Chinese Ghost Story throws in a few decent twists, but overall this messy comedy-romance isn't really noteworthy. Tony Leung Chiu-Wai is Shing, a lowly comic book artist who dreams up his fantasy girl in Ching Ching (Joey Wong). Somehow there's a weird twist involving a near-car accident and Ching Ching makes it into the real world. There's some hijinks as Shing becomes frightened of Ching Ching, but soon he discovers that she's a sweet, lovely girl of a ghost. Since she's played by legendary scenery Joey Wong, who could doubt her claim that she isn't evil.
     Sadly, her pal (Deannie Yip) is not so cool. She's a relatively nice ghost who trades in human souls, and is willing to sell out Ching Ching to evil netherworld baddies in exchange for a good reincarnation for her son. Also, Ching Ching will disappear if Shing is lucky, so he tries to jettison his sudden good fortune (winning at mahjong, writing a best-selling comic). This is more difficult than it seems, as Ching Ching wishes nothing more than the best for him. She even goes out of her way to create good fortune, which doesn't help their doomed romance any.
     All the typical elements of the genre are here, except they bring everything to the present and substitute bad filmmakers for good ones. Taylor Wong, and not Ching Siu-Tung, directed this flick, which means no real action and lots of unfunny shtick. The development of Shing and Ching Ching's romance is nonexistent, and a lot of the key plot points are so murky that you might have to watch this film twice.
     Then again, this movie does not require a second viewing because it's not very good. It's nice to see Joey Wong act cute, but that's arguably a reason to see this film. Tony Leung phones in his performance (he doesn't even dub his own voice), and overall nothing important happens. The cheap cinematography or the pencil-animated climax (not unlike A-ha's "Take on Me" music video) might be amusing to the casual viewer, but otherwise this is only for Tony Leung/Joey Wong completists. And even they may not be amused. (Kozo 2003)
Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 3/6 NTSC
Fortune Star / Deltamac
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles
image courtesy of Deltamac
 Copyright 2002-2017 Ross Chen