Saturday, November 13, 2010 - 7:15pm
Derek Kwok & Clement Cheng
Hong Kong / China
When directors Derek Kwok and Clement Cheng were trying to raise financing for GALLANTS they were told over and over again, "No one wants to see a movie starring washed up has-beens." But eventually Hong Kong’s legendary pop star and actor, Andy Lau (INFERNAL AFFAIRS), put up the budget and the result is the funniest, most ass-kicking, hard rocking, pedal to the metal movie of the year. It’s COCOON with kung fu! Loser office boy, Cheung (Wong Yue-nam), is banished to one of Hong Kong’s rural backwaters to help greedy property developers kick a bunch of old timers out of a run down tea house. But this teahouse used to be a martial arts studio and its owners, Dragon (Chen Kuan-tai) and Tiger (Bruce Leung), are trying to keep the lights on until Master Law (Teddy Robin), wakes up from his 30-year coma and tells them what to do again.
Chen Kuan-tai was Shaw Brother’s most iconic leading man in the 70’s and Bruce Leung started his career as a Bruce Lee imitator before becoming a celebrated martial artist (he played "The Beast" in Stephen Chow’s KUNG FU HUSTLE). Teddy Robin is only four feet tall, but he’s a producer, an actor and the man who invented Chinese rock n’roll, even writing and performing the music for this film. Real-life gangster-turned-actor, Chan Wai-man plays the evil Master Poon; Lo Meng (aka Turbo Law) was one of the Five Deadly Venoms; and Susan Shaw, playing Dr. Fun, was a softcore sexpot back in the day. And with decades of experience behind them, these old pros own the screen.
But GALLANTS isn't just a wallow in nostalgia, and it’s not just a comedy. It's a movie about the true martial arts spirit. Because you can run from your problems, but eventually you're going to have to stand and fight. And even if you've waited until your joints creak and your hair turned gray, it's never too late to turn and face the world with a raised fist and a kung fu cry on your lips. (New York Asian Film Festival)
Print Source: Courtesy Golden Network Asia Limited