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Gigolo of Chinese Hollywood
Year: 1999
Gallen Law, Nat Chan, Emotion Cheung and Eric Tsang
Director: Chung Shu-Kai
Producer: Wong Jing
Cast: Gallen Law Kar-Leung, Eric Tsang Chi-Wai, Nat Chan Bak-Cheung, Emotion Cheung Kam-Ching, Suki Kwan Sau-Mei, Simon Lui Yu-Yeung, Yip Kwong-Kim, Law Lan, Ha Ping, Choh Yuen
The Skinny: Wong Jing's satirical comedy turns out more like a PSA against VCD Piracy. But hey, it's still kind of amusing for those who get the jokes.
by Kozo:
     Pirated VCDs:  that scourge of the film industry - which is close to wiping out HK Cinema as we know it - is a major focus of this insider laugh-fest which parodies some of HK’s most prominent entertainers. 
     Eric Tsang stars as a Peter Chan look-alike director who can’t get work thanks to the poor HK film industry. He bands with producer Nat Chan Bak-Cheung (looking like Tsui Hark) to make a new film. They enlist writer Emotion Cheung and star Gallen Law (who’s supposed to be Stephen Chow) to make their new movie but they lack money. So, they turn to Simon Lui who instructs them to become gigolo, renting out their services to old lady Law Lan in exchange for the bucks to get the film rolling. Suki Kwan shows up in a hilarious Shu Qi parody as a Taiwanese actress who can’t pronounce Cantonese. 
     Wong Jing takes more stabs at Wong Kar-Wai as these intrepid filmmakers make an arty drama that utilizes cheapness under the guise of “art.” They’re all lucky enough to win awards, but must find a way to prevent their gigolo ways from becoming scandal fodder. 
    As a parody, this is an entertaining enough movie. The situations are funny and some of the shtick is good. Still, it’s only shtick. Despite some laughs, the movie doesn’t amount to much. In fact, it sometimes comes dangerously close to becoming a PSA for anti-piracy. That point is valid: piracy must be curbed somehow. Still, as moviemaking goes HK cinema is going to have to work harder to find a new direction. Reinvention may be the only way to save the cinema. (Kozo 1999)
Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Mei Ah Laser
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles

image courtesy of Mei Ah Laser Disc Co., Ltd.

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