Memories are painful. Forgetting them is a blessing. – Kung Fu Hustle
Directed, produced and played by the King of Comedy, Stephen Chow’s 2004 Kung Fu Hustle brought him international recognition and also won Stephen the Best Director award at the Golden Horse Awards.
I was expecting more comedy elements and scenes in this film, but this action film surprised me with the brilliant martial arts scenes between the actors. The plot is simple though. It literally is about Sing, a petty crook who wishes to join the Shanghai gang Axe Gang, and his encounters with the villagers of Pigsty Alley which accidentally triggered the Axe Gang members to attack the residents there.
I do believe that this show had very few lines, albeit similar to Zhang Yimous’ Hero. The cast’s facial expressions and body language were the only few clues to the film’s plot progression. I could not really understand where the show was going until almost an hour in; the film just had very stunning and excellent cinematography but the plot was not as developed and obvious as I hoped. Nonetheless, the action scenes by veteran actors Yuen Wah, Yuen Qiu and Leung Siu-lung accompanied by classic Chinese Orchestra kung-fu pieces made this film so memorable.
I wished the film will just tell us more about the origin story of the characters. It felt like we only know they are well-trained in the martial arts field and that’s it. I wouldn’t say this is the best kung fu film I’ve watched simply because of its lacklustre plot but otherwise, this film was saved with the help of its soundtrack and cinematography.