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Hero - Beyond the Boundary of Time

"Your hat is amazing!"

Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Veronica Yip in Hero - Beyond the Boundary of Time.

Year: 1993
Director: Blacky Ko Sau-Leung
Producer: Clarence Yip Wai-Chung
Cast: Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Dicky Cheung Wai-Kin, Veronica Yip Yuk-Hing, Ng Suet-Man, Ken Tong Chun-Yip, Lee Fai, Chang Gan-Wing, Jamie Luk Kin-Ming, Lee Yuet-Sin
The Skinny: Occasionally funny but mostly annoying comedy featuring Tony Leung Chiu-Wai as Wai Siu-Bo. Pretty much nonsensical and bothersome, the film features some fun action and the occasional lowbrow laugh. No, Wong Jing had nothing to do with it.
by Kozo:
     Blacky Ko directs this bawdy lowbrow comedy starring Tony Leung Chiu-Wai in one of the roles that made him famous: Wai Siu-Bo. However, unlike the TVB series or Stephen Chow's Royal Tramp movies, Siu-Bo isn't scampering around the royal palace. Instead, Siu-Bo gets sent forward in time thanks to the "Invincible Time Adventure Wheel." His mission is to find the future queen of the Emperor (Ken Tong), who is supposedly the only one who can cure his mystery illness. Siu-Bo resolves to complete the mission, but proceeds to act wacky, lust after women, and get into all sorts of trouble with modern policeman pal Chiu (Dicky Cheung). However, evil bastard rebels want to do the Emperor in, and send two bad guys into the future to take out Siu-Bo. In response, two of Siu-Bo's seven wives (including princess Veronica Yip) leap forward to aid our hero. Meanwhile, he's still lusting after women.
     The bad guys don't chase after our hero until the hour mark of this ninety-seven minute flick, so until then it's in-your-face wacky shtick all the time. Among the fine nuggets of humor served up for our viewing pleasure: Dicky Cheung getting beat up, Dicky Cheung overdosing on aphrodisiac, Tony Leung beating Dicky Cheung senseless after a failed rape while under the influence of said aphrodisiac, Tony Leung spying on Ng Suet-Man in the shower, and untold minutes of Dicky Cheung doing the patented Dicky Cheung thing. What that means is annoying antics which could slaughter untold millions, a tactic Cheung has employed in many a film from Chez 'n Ham to Holy Weapon. Sadly, Tony Leung can't be discounted from the annoying overacting department, as he's pretty damn smarmy and bothersome, too. If the Cannes Film Festival Jury saw Hero - Beyond the Boundary of Time, it's likely that Leung would get that Best Actor trophy revoked.
     Then again, the fault probably belongs to the early-nineties Hong Kong Cinema money-making machine, which stipulated quick films, no script and an assault of jokes - both good and bad. There are some occasional amusing lowbrow moments. Siu-Bo and Chiu get turned on while interviewing queen candidates, and the table rises thanks to their...uh, excitement. Having Siu-Bo use his kung-fu skills in offhand ways is also amusing, and Veronica Yip and Ng Suet-Man provide the requisite eye candy. And, the final action sequence in the amusement park provides its share of fun, albeit some of it nonsensical. This is pretty average Hong Kong Cinema, which doesn't necessarily equal a recommendation. Considering the fact that 1993 also produced Burning Paradise, He Ain't Heavy He's My Father, Fong Sai-Yuk, Executioners and C'est La Vie Mon Cheri, it would seem you have a variety of better films to choose from. (Kozo 2002)
Availability: DVD (Hong Kong)
Region 0 NTSC
Mega Star/Media Asia
16x9 Anamorphic Widescreen
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks
Dolby Digital 5.1
Removable English and Chinese Subtitles

image courtesy of Mega Star Video Distribution, Ltd.

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