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Saviour of the Soul 2
   |     review    |     notes     |     availability     |   "Yes, you should read into the length of my sword."
Andy Lau breaks out his sword
  
Year: 1992
Director: Corey Yuen Kwai, David Lai Dai-Wai
Producer: Chan Poon-Wei
Action: Yuen Tak
Cast: Andy Lau Tak-Wah, Corey Yuen Kwai, Rosamund Kwan Chi-Lam, Lai Chi-Lam, Shirley Kwan Suk-Yi, Richard Ng Yiu-Hon, Chung Bik-Wing
The Skinny: From Corey Yuen Kwai comes this silly mo lei tau farce, which is misleadingly disguised as a high-flying wuxia epic. Neither downright hilarious nor interminably horrible, Saviour of the Soul 2 comes across as funny, but forgettable fluff.
Review by
Calvin
McMillin:
     As if to announce its own epic grandeur, Saviour of the Soul 2 begins high atop a lofty, snow-covered mountain. Amidst the white, rocky peaks, we find Ching Yan (Andy Lau), a lone swordsman diligently perfecting his martial arts technique as a beautiful woman (Rosamund Kwan) looks on. But something seems slightly odd about the scene. For starters, Ching Yan's sword seems ridiculously long and far too flexible, even by Hong Kong standards. And just why would a dedicated kung fu master bother impressing a girl? But just as the pieces start to come together, Ching Yan confirms the audience's sneaking suspicion that things are more than they seem by turning to the camera and speaking directly to the viewers. After addressing them about his attempts to woo his "dream lover," Ching Yan then proceeds to carve a red sportscar out of the snowy terrain. After that, he writes, "I Love You" in the snow. This, my friends, is not your typical fantasy swordplay movie.
     As expected, the above-mentioned occurrences turn out to be a part of a dream sequence, but if you think for one second that the movie will come back to any semblance of realism, you are greatly mistaken. Unlike the original film, Saviour of the Soul 2 is an all-out Naked Gun-style farce. In the plot, our hero has apparently dreamt about the same beautiful woman his entire life. With his godson Tim (Lai Chi-Lam) and his zany pal known only as "Doctor" (Corey Yuen Kwai), Ching Yan goes on a hazardous quest to obtain the elusive Virgin Ice (Ice, I said! Not ass! Get your head out of the gutter!). Along the way, he meets Ruby (Shirley Kwan), who believes Ching Yan is HER dream lover.
     Of course, since it's a nutty comedy, rib-tickling sight gags, movie parodies (including a stab at Stephen Chow's All for the Winner character), a joke ripped straight from Scooby Doo, and other assorted Hong Kong-style wackiness ensue. Still, the film eventually settles into romantic mode with the arrival of the dreamy Madam (Rosamund Kwan again) on the scene. Soon after, the villainous, but not too subtly named King of Evil (Richard Ng) shows up to cause trouble. As a result, people die, people return from the dead, and Andy Lau gets it on with a decrepit, old hag (don't ask!) in a scene that supposed to tug on our heartstrings, but instead has us reaching for the nearest barf bag. In the end, everything's wrapped up neatly and evil is vanquished, which in truth made for a surprisingly amusing experience overall. But honestly, will I ever have any desire to watch Saviour of the Soul 2 again? Uh, keep dreaming. (Calvin McMillin 2003)
Notes:

• Filmed mostly in Canada.
• Supposedly based on a Louis Cha novel

Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Universe Laser
Widescreen
Cantonese and Mandarin Language
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles

image courtesy of Universe Laser & Video Co., Ltd.

   
   
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