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Carry on Hotel
Chinese: 金裝大酒店 "Can we discuss this?"
Pat Ha, Eric Tsang and Cherie Chung
Year: 1988
Director: Jeff Lau Chun-Wai
Cast: Jacky Cheung Hok-Yau, Cecilia Yip Tung, Joey Wong Cho-Yin, Wu Feng, Richard Ng Yiu-Hon, Chan Fai-Hung, Charlie Chin Chiang-Lin,Sin Lap-Man, Kent Cheng Juk-Si, Pat Ha Man-Chik, Cherie Chung Chor-Hung, Eric Tsang Chi-Wai, Billy Lau Nam-Kwong, Yasuaki Kurata
The Skinny: Silly all-star comedy is as lightweight and inconsequential as they come. The storylines are hackneyed and the comedy can sometimes be annoyingly lame. Still, despite all that (or perhaps because of it), this fluffy affair can be suitably diverting.
by Kozo:

Screwy all-star silliness which exemplifies eighties Hong Kong comedy. The film is a diverting time, but given its comedic excess it might qualify to some as Wong Jing for the eighties. Not surprisingly, Carry on Hotel was directed by Jeff Lau, who brings Mo Lei Tau to new heights (or lows, depending on who you ask).

The story is thus: in a five-star Singapore hotel, many stories happen with little or no relation. Some are good, some are bad. All feature big stars. Kent Cheng is a seedy detective who attempts to record an illicit affair, and installs numerous video cameras to get the job done. Meanwhile, a couple tries to conduct an affair, not realizing that their room is the one that's been hacked. Cheng's room has since been rented out to a Hong Kong glam rock band, and they attempt to enjoy the free show. Then Richard Ng shows up as a wacky thief, who engages in ninjitsu to fool the locals. Womanizing tour guide Eric Tsang gets stalked by not one, but two pretty women (Cherie Chung and Pat Ha) who seem to like carrying knives. And finally, Jacky Cheung is a lowly mechanic at the hotel who lusts after gorgeous executive Sunflower (Joey Wong). However, his tomboy buddy Boy George (Cecilia Yip) secretly pines for him. Whew!

As most of the stories are unrelated, the film goes through its paces without pausing for much undue reflection or even explication of what's going on. We're merely supposed to follow these numerous unimportant plotlines and find some form of entertainment in it. It's like the presence of big stars and nonsensical comedy is supposed to make everything all right. does! Unlike bigger and more ponderous all-star comedies, Carry on Hotel never attempts anything other than strange comedy and brief, amusing asides. The only saccarine plotline would be Jacky Cheung's, as he must choose between the glamourous Joey Wong and the not-so-glamourous (but still quite winning) Cecilia Yip. To call the plotline touching would probably be a stretch, but considering the overall lack of pretentiousness here, that moment of sappiness can easily be forgiven.

Ultimately, Carry on Hotel proves to be pleasant and inconsequential. Nothing earth-shattering or even sofa-shaking occurs here. However, the film is ideal for spending a mellow afternoon with HK Cinema pals Eric Tsang, Cherie Chung, Joey Wong, Richard Ng, Cecilia Yip and Jacky Cheung - if watching these likable stars engage in silly pratfalls is your idea of a good time. If it isn't, then you should probably skip this and catch another movie. If you prefer, there's always something with killing or massive explosions instead. (Kozo 1998/2002)

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. Copyright 2002-2017 Ross Chen