Director: Samo Hung
Writer: Barry Wong
Producer: Eric Tsang
Cast: Sammo Hung, Richard Ng, Stanley Fung, Eric Tsang, Michael Miu, John Sham, Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao, Rosamund Kwan, Sibelle Hu, Chung Fat, Yasuaki Kurata, Richard Norton, Philip Ko, Andy Lau, Lau Kar Wing, Dick Wei, Anthony Chan, Charlie Chin, Chin Kar Lok, Kara Hui
Running Time: 90 min.
More of the same, but a little better.
I’m a little annoyed that I waited so long to see this one. It suffers from the same pacing problems found in several of Sammo Hung’s other movies, but this time ’round I didn’t mind as much. The humor is still juvenile, but it’s a little funnier. There’s still an agonizingly long scene or two where Sammo and his buddies go to absurd lengths for a couple of cheap thrills, but it’s a little easier to stomach. Yuen Biao still doesn’t have as much to do as his older Peking Opera School brothers, but at least he’s not absent for 95% of the film like he was in My Lucky Stars (which, come to think of it, I’ve never seen in its full length form, having foolishly bought the Arena video tape several years back. Damn…).
Drooling fanboys who think that Jackie Chan and Jet Li are the only significant Chinese superstars there are will most likely sleep through the first half hour as Sammo Hung, Sibelle Hu and company take center stage. Richard Ng (why the hell does this guy ALWAYS wear shorts in Sammo’s movies?) tries to learn black magic so that he can make the chicks hanging out at a resort fall in love with them. Most of the humor is equally lowbrow, without really being vulgar.
Jackie Chan, Yuen Biao, and their new partner Andy Lau make their entrance with a bang, taking on a slew of low-rent thugs in a very nice fight scene set in a warehouse. You can tell this is Sammo’s doing…old school fighting the way it was meant to be, with no wires, none of that fake-looking step-by-step choreography that plagues all those 1970s chop socky movies, none of Jackie’s clowning around and excessive use of props, etc. I’m not saying that these things can’t be amusing, but I prefer my ass-kicking to be a bit more straightforward. The same rules generally apply to the other fight scenes throughout the film, including Jackie’s duel with Richard Norton (the OTHER Richard who’s in lots of Sammo films) and the thrilling finale, which doesn’t cut rapidly back and forth between the various combatants, thus creating an odd sensation that all of this chaos ISN’T happening at the same time, but what the hell, sometimes it’s better to just let the fighting breathe flesh itself out.
Michelle Yeoh makes a cameo appearance as a judo instructor. She makes Richard Ng a lucky man by sitting on top of him. Then Sammo makes Michelle an unlucky woman by doing the same thing to her.
There’s a bit of a plot hole with Jackie and Andy having to protect some bad guy with the matter of “why” not exactly being crystal clear, but it’s not that important. There are a couple of other stupid points, like Ms. Wang failing to notice that there’s no evidence of a fire the morning after Sammo and his friends convince her that the house is ablaze, and the sniper in the bathroom falling for that “blind girl” act (come ON!!!), but the film gets by on the merits of its action and, to a lesser extent, its comedy, and, at the end of the day, is a pretty satisfactory experience.
Numskull’s Rating: 7/10
My favorite lucky stars flick due to the great fighting. Sammo finally editied together some great fight scenes in this “Lucky stars” movie. The comedy is just like “My Lucky Stars” because nothing is really funny by itself, but all of the funny scenes combined give a little bit of comedy satisfaction. There are four good fights… JC, Yuen Biao, and Andy Lau vs. many in the warehouse….Samo vs. those chicks, at least I think they were chicks… JC vs. Richard Norton…..and the superb finale with Yuen, Samo, and JC all kicking ass. I actually recommend this “Lucky stars” effort, even though JC is not in it much.
Clint’s Rating: 7/10
By Louis Stevens
This film is excellent, the biggest and most expensive of all the lucky stars movies, the begining has a monster of a fight with Jackie and Yeun Biao taking on about 30 guys in a ware house, the humour is great, the only thing is Jackie was injured so the fight filled ending was done with Sammo intsead, but it’s still a great movie, from what I remember this has more Jackie in it than the other lucky stars flick, yeah watch this!
Louis Stevens’ Rating: 8/10