review by Neo

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An artistic B-movie…
What happens when you combine a Golden Horse award winning director Ho Ping with a B-movie expert Tony Leung Hung Wah? The answer is Sweet Revenge, a movie that contain some well shot scenes as well as some worthy shots of cinematography, which all adds up to being an above average flick. Sometimes, you wonder what could have been, especially when the movie contains the ever improving Nick Cheung, the irresistible Fan Bing Bing, an award winning supporting actor in Anthony Wong and adding on the icing with Golden Horse winning director Ho Ping. Perhaps this is the reason why the film have left Neo slightly disappointed, as it never attempts to do anything new and anything special. Sure, it is a damn good movie by Tony Leung Hung Wah’s standard, but with such a line up, it is really quite disappointing.

The movie goes like this: Nick Cheung seems to be living a normal life with a new found sister (Fan Bing Bing) and a beautiful wife (Li Tong). Despite Nick treating Fan Bing Bing extremely well, she began suspecting of her brother’s past and in the process falling in love with a 2nd hand shop owner (Anthony Wong). Just like all thrillers, things are not what you think they are…

The first stop of this review is definitely a little paragraph dedicating to the irresistible Fan Bing Bing. Fan is one pretty chick and there is something about her that makes her irresistible for the viewer’s eyes. It may be her wide eyes, or her natural curve face or her sensitive emotion, but whatever it is, Fan is one person that can capture the audience attention. Moving on to her performance, Fan for the first time in her short acting career is given a slightly beefy role and she handles it with a certain natural flair. Not only did she hold her own against Anthony Wong, but at times steal the scene away from the ever improving Nick Cheung, especially in an artistic scene where Fan is crouching down on the backdrop of an artistic wall. It is an improved performance from her last outing – Battle of Wits and certainly an actress Neo will be keeping a close eye on for years to come.

Almost forgetting that this is a Nick Cheung’s movie, it is needless to say that Cheung has improved his acting ever since storming through the scenes of Johnnie To’s flicks. Here, Cheung is suitably intense and at times his discern into madness is quite enduring to watch. Adding to the mix is Anthony Wong who seems to have nothing to do, either than kiss Fan Bing Bing, drink and sleep. Unfortunately his romance with Fan seems more fiction than reality. Perhaps, it indirectly adds to some unnecessary thoughts from the audience as to whether or not Anthony is Fan’s daddy.

All in all, Sweet Revenge has some bright spots and in fact it can be safe to say that if this is a B-movie, it is pretty damn good. However, given the cast and director, the result is a waste of talent and the effect is leaving the audience such as the current reviewer feeling what could have been. While the film answers all the questions that it seem to poses, it fails to add that extra bit of flavour into it. In the past, Ho Ping’s films have a certain distinct Ho Ping’s flavour upon it, but this time, his direction seems to be overshadowed by something. The result is an above average birthday cake, that just kind of loses its flavour. It is an adequate piece of filmmaking, but Neo just can’t help thinking – what could have been… On a finishing note and without being too cliché, Neo just have to say it once again, Fan Bing Bing is pretty hot and so is the hair style…

I rate it 7/10

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Directed by: Ho Ping
Cast: Nick Cheung Ka-Fai, Fan Bing-Bing, Anthony Wong Chau-Sang, Li Tong
Genre: Thriller

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