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A Wedding or a Funeral
Chinese: 婚前殺行為 "Something stinks almost as bad as this movie!"
Sam Lee saves Pauline Suen
Year: 2004
Director: Ho Chi-Hang
Producer: Takkie Yeung Yat-Tak
Writer: Takkie Yeung Yat-Tak, Ho Chi-Hang
Cast: Sam Lee Chan-Sam, Pauline Suen Kai-Kwan, Sin Lap-Man, Jim Chim Sui-Man, Lam Suet, Law Koon-Lan
The Skinny: Another candidate for "Worst Film of the Year." That fact that this movie was shot on film and not video is not a saving grace. Your average home movie is directed better than this tripe.
 
Review
by Kozo:

Sam Lee goes under the gun in the sublimely awful thriller A Wedding or a Funeral. Lee plays Joe, an aptly-named normal guy who's about to marry the pretty Shirley (Pauline Suen), a woman who is clearly his physical superior. Still, she's attracted to him because he's such a good guy, a factor outlined in a brightly-lit flashback where Joe saves Shirley from a flaming taxi wreck. But Joe gets a rude wedding gift when Shirley gets kidnapped by a mystery bad guy, who proceeds to blackmail Joe into doing all sorts of sordid stuff, namely kidnapping and detaining three seemingly innocent men (Tan Lap-Man, Jim Chim, and Lam Suet). Joe is a non-confrontational sort who could use a couple of lessons in assertion and general kick-ass manliness. Apparently, this whole ordeal looks to be a way for him to transform from mousy good guy to awesome beefcake hero who can make a lady like Shirley go weak in the knees. Right?

Wrong. You're mistaking A Wedding or a Funeral for a film by people who've actually studied filmmaking. If they had, they might have realized that a cheesy storyline like the "man who finds himself through adversity" cliché would have raised A Wedding or a Funeral to mediocrity. Since this film can't even find a cliché to use, what's left is an uninteresting motion picture that falls below mediocre into all-out terrible. This is ostensibly a thriller, but instead of thrilling anyone, the film bores us with nonexistent characters, annoying supporting actors, lame dialogue, and some revelatory plot twists that are as surprising as the outcome of your usual celebrity media trial. This shouldn't be too surprising since the film was produced by B&S Films, Hong Kong's leading purveyor of amateurish shot-on-video cinema. A Wedding or a Funeral was not shot on video, but that doesn't help it much. If anything, the fact that it was shot on film calls more attention to the poor art direction and cinematography.

It's sad that Sam Lee and Pauline Suen—two actors who have have actually turned in good performances before—had to appear in tripe like this. What's even more worrisome is that their performances are either overdone or uninteresting, suggesting that boredom led them to overact or phone it in. This is especially true for Lee, whose overdone mugging and undiscplined acting seems to suggest a kid trying to stave off boredom by amusing himself. Hopefully he succeeded, but whatever amusement he created is not transmitted to the audience. Director Ho Chi-Hang does nothing to suggest that he deserves better filmmaking gigs, and the appearances by Law Koon-Lan and Lam Suet only remind us how far the industry has fallen. Reduced revenue means reduced budgets, so you have to make do with what you got. In the interests of low costs, they likely spent nothing on this production, with the hopes that whatever money was spent would be used on film quality and not inflated salaries or exorbitant production costs. However, given the ultimate quality of A Wedding or a Funeral, simply burning the money might have been the same thing. (Kozo 2004)

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

image courtesy of Deltamac (Hong Kong) Co,, Ltd.

   
 
 
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