A funny and touching action film
Tintin | Boston, USA | 02/13/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is one of my favorite Stephen Chow movies. Some say this film marks a change in Stephen Chow's style. His prior comedies were really funny but also mostly tongue-in-cheek, where rarely did Chow's characters display any sincerity, and his tears were always fake. But this movie is different. While still gut-bustingly funny, it actually shows real emotions. An example is the bullet extraction scene, very effective, very touching, it makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time. Being both hilarious and sincere is not easy, but Chow does it to perfection. In fact, this is a distinct trait of Chow's later films such as Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer.
Some jokes may be hard to get for the westerners. The female lead is supposed to be the daughter of a famous real life historical figure who was a singer, movie star and traitor. The song Chow sang on the piano was a tribute to that figure and a real life mega hit by singer Jacky Cheung. But this should not affect your enjoyment of the rest of the movie.
Of course, Anita Yuen's great performance plays off perfectly against Chow's wackiness. The action scenes were beautifully done. Stephen Chow fans should not missed this one."
Where is this going...
Sean E. Mcgrath | Austin, TX USA | 08/02/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"...you may ask yourself at the start of movie. A dinosaur skull is the object of many people's desires, but why it is so covented.. well, that's never explained. A man in impenetrable armor protects the skull from interloping secret agents (he's bad. We know he's bad because of the way he laughs - maniacally). Who does the Chinese government call in to help? A secret agent who is actually a butcher. Again, it's unclear if he's retired, under deep cover or being a butcher is just something he likes to do.Welcome to the world of Stephen Chow.Stephen Chow is well known in Hong Kong cinema fans as being the Lord of Satire - targets being Wuxia films, Iron Chef and here, 007 movies. I forget the term, but Stephen Chow's movies fall into a categorey of film loosely translated as "makes no sense." "From Beijing with Love" you know is going to be a rough ride when the silhouette girls attack Our Hero during the opening credits and he is forced to shoot them. The first time I watched "From Beijing with Love" (what do people outside of Austin, TX do to see good HK movies? We have a monthly showing at a local drafthouse! Poor souls who don't live here.), I counted no less than seven times when I almost lost control of my bladder from laughing. The plot is muddled, incomprehensible and too fun to accurately describe here without depriving the new viewer of some truly outrageous and funny moments.I will say just one more thing: "Magic Box!!!"Watch this movie. You will understand. It's boffo."
Great Asian 007 Parody from Chow
Steve Vander | 06/08/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"1994 Hong Kong 007 Parody. Spy/Action/Adventure.
Also known as: "Guo chan Ling Ling Qi"; and "From China with Love"
DVD Features: The DVD I received is very basic and just contains the movie.
Credits: Stephen Chow (credited as Stephen Chiao; part: Ling Ling Chai; also starred in "Kung Fu Hustle"), Anita Yuen (Siu Kam; "The Monkey King"), Pauline Chan (Woman; "Millennium Mambo"), Joe Cheng (Partner of Woman; "My Sweetie"), Kar-Ying Law (Da Mansi; "House of Fury"), Kam-Kong Wong (Commander; "The Defender"), and Rongguang Yu (Yee; "Iron Monkey"). The credited directors are Stephen Chiao (Chow; director of "Kung Fu Hustle") and Lik-Chi Lee ("The King of Comedy"). Both directors are also credited as being the screen writers, along with Roman Cheung ("Gambling Ghost") & Vincent Kok ("Super Model").
Plot: An ancient dinosaur skull has been stolen by a "superagent" wearing extensive body armor and an agent that has been long on the bench (so to speak) is assigned to investigate the case. His immediate commander, it is very quickly revealed (and is therefore not a spoiler) to actually be the bad guy, and he picked Chow (the benched agent) because of the fact that Chow is considered currently unfit to be an agent (and therefore is expected to fail in his mission). To help Chow fail in his mission, his boss sends him to another Chinese intelligence officer in Hong Kong, who is secretly working directly for the boss, and who has been tasked to eliminate Chow.
Review: This is an early Stephen Chow movie (of the relatively recent: "Shaolin Soccer" and "Kung Fu Hustle" movies), so early that he is credited as Stephen Chau. This movie is something of a parody of 007 (the opening is very similar to a 007 opening credits sequence, though Bond doesn't normally attack and kill one of the dancing girls). There is a Q equivalent, who is somewhat incompetent and tends to make strange and somewhat stupid inventions. Beyond the asian Q's inventions, there are many other spy gadgets used in the film, which includes the spy phone in the toliet device.
The movie is actually quite good and humorous, unlikely as that might seem. The plot might be a little silly, but is solid. The acting is great. The music is superb. The humor is good, even if you don't understand the language. Overall, I would rate the movie 4.21 stars out of five."
Fabulous Introduction & Parody!
Steve Vander | 09/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the best introduction to Stephen Chow for non Asian viewers. The special effects are easily up to par w/ all the other James Bond movies..if not better. Plus, you have the ever funny and subversive wit of Mr Chow. This was the very first one I saw of his..and still in my top 5. Maybe it was because all these HK movie books said not to watch him. Well..,they were wrong..even us foreign devils can understand this one very easily. He is the most gifted actor,writer, & goofball there is. 5 Stars for this still stands. Buy this..you'll be glad you took a chance."