Category Archives: Sandra Ng

Princess and Seven Kung Fu Masters 笑功震武林 (2013) – Hong Kong / China

Review by: Andrew Chan FCCA AACTA
Review Date: 13th March 2013
In cinemas Hong Kong and China from 7th March 2013

Directed by: Wong Jing, Venus Keung
Starring: Ronald Cheng, Sandra Ng, Wong Cho Nam, Eric Tsang, Sammo Hung, Kimmy Tong

Hong Kong Box Office Takings: HK$3,184,910

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I don’t exactly know what is a bigger surprise, the world didn’t end in 2012 or Wong Jing have managed to pull off two good movies in a row. After the above average “The Last Tycoon”, prolific Wong Jing goes back to his comedic roots in the ridiculously titled “Princess and Seven Kung Fu Masters”. The good news is that this is Wong Jing’s funniest comedy in years and lest rejoice.

Packing a steady pack of veteran comedians in Ronald Cheng, Eric Tsang, Sandra Ng and Wong Cho Nam, the film already have the comic appeal and winning presence. What Wong Jing does well in this film is that he manages to put together some decent kung fu sequences (thanks to the sharp action choreography by Phillip Ng) and plenty of good kung fu prowess in Sammo Hung, Dennis To and Phillip Ng. The result is easily winning the audience attention through some truly funny gags and quality kung fu on display. It’s been long overdue, but Wong Jing finally deliver what he does and can do best, in making good commercial cinema.

This is really an ensemble cast performance. Ronald Cheng continues his good streak of form in yet another welcoming comic display. As usual, Sandra Ng is funny with a welcoming presence, Eric Tsang gets an extended role and is already wonderful to witness alongside longtime TVB partner in crime Wong Cho Nam. Sammo Hung flairs well with some good kung fu chops, as does up and coming martial artists Dennis To and Phillip Ng. As usual, what Wong Jing film can be completed without a flower glass and Kimmy Tong (who has been a regular in Wong Jing’s films for the past year) fits the bill without being demeaning.

All in all, I know I haven’t been the nicest of critics of Wong Jing in recent years, but as the old saying goes, you are only as good as your last film. Then Wong Jing career have seem to revive in both “The Last Tycoon” and now this film. Credit should always be given when due and this is no exception as “Princess and Seven Kung Fu Masters” is easily Wong Jing’s funniest and best comedy in years and a fine return to form. I don’t know how long this streak will last, but for the sake of the weeping and dwelling Hong Kong cinema fans, let’s hope that this is the beginning of a new chapter in Wong Jing turbulent career. (Neo 2013)

I rates it 7.5/10

Hotel Deluxe 百星酒店 (2013) – Hong Kong / China

Review by: Andrew Chan FCCA AACTA
Review Date: 19th February 2013
Releasing in cinemas in Hong Kong, 7th February 2013

Director: Vincent Kok
Cast: Sandra Ng, Chapman To, Ronald Cheng, Teresa Mo, Lynn Xiong, Raymond Wong, Fiona Sit, Eric Kot, Karena Ng, Yu Bo, Janelle Sing, Jim Chim

Hong Kong Box Office Takings: HK$19,469,958

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Setting an entire film within a hotel is not something new, as Michael Hui did it to a certain degree in “Funny Business”, the Japanese followed suit in “The Uchoten Hotel” and most recently China scooped in with “Happy Hotel”. The latest Vincent Kok’s lunar Chinese New Year film comes in the same format with “Hotel Deluxe” and follows the same formula as the predecessor, while without the same effect.

There is no denying that Sandra Ng, Chapman To, Ronald Cheng and Theresa Mo have great rapport and an instant undeniable chemistry. The instant chemistry provides the audience with plenty of spontaneous laughters. When the cast is clearly having fun acting, the feeling is easily translated to the audience. However, as a lunar new year film, it feels rather empty and at times losing the Hong Kong flair in the midst of a Chinese co-production. Director Vincent Kok tries hard to keep the film afloat and manages to scrap through with the cast of experienced comedians and Lunar new year films alumni.

Ronald Cheng gets the most screen time and brutally overacts to maximum comic effect. Cheng in recent years have finally reached a stage of maturity and seemingly grown out of the previously castes shadow as Stephen Chow’s predecessor, to be a character actor in his own right. Here we see an extremely likeable Cheng that is funny rather than annoying. Theresa Mo is always wonderful in film like these and provide an excellent presence. Mo in many ways seems to be leading the pack like a mother. Sandra Ng once again impresses the audience by inducing plenty of laughter in her role as the hotel keeper/ cleaner. The man of the moment (2012 in particular), Chapman To is only given limited screen time, but the audience has gotten used to To’s style of antics, that he is funny regardless of what he does. Karena Ng is largely underused and her career seem to be stale since “Magic to Win”. Fiona Sit is essentially Fiona Sit and her sub-plot with Ronald Cheng manages to be most interesting part of the film. Although 2012 was a big and active year for Sit, but none of the roles requires her to go further in her acting depth. It is a shame that Sit’s best work remains her chapter with Jaycee Chan in films like “2 Young” and “Break Up Club”. As usual, what new year film can be without producer Raymond Wong and surprisingly he doesn’t ruin the film with his presence this time around.

All in all, “Hotel Deluxe” is really light weight lunar new year entertainment that manages to be decent due to the calibre its experienced cast and crew. It is a shame that more is not made out of its Hotel premises and director/writer Vincent Kok does not take more leaves out of the Korean and Chinese earlier versions. Still, in terms of light hearted entertainment, “Hotel Deluxe” manages to be decent, if only a little empty. (Neo 2013)

I rated it 6.5/10