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Wednesday, 13 February 2013

"I Love Hong Kong 2013" "2013我爱香港HK 恭喜发财" Movie Review

"I Love Hong Kong 2013" "2013我爱香港HK 恭喜发财" Movie Review



Introduction
"I Love Hong Kong 2013" is the third installment of the franchise. The story this time is set in modern time with flashbacks of the past during 1970s. Majority length of the movie has taken place in the flashback of the past. 

In the current days, Sung Chi Hong (Alan Tam) has been faced with financial problem due to his personality of loving to help others. He has become guarantor for his ex-worker but his ex-worker runs away from the debt leaving Sung in a deep financial trouble. He is also forced by his wife Mei Yeung Yeung (Veronica Yip) to sell off his Chinese restaurant. Apart from that, he is also approached by his used-to-be buddy Ha Shek Sam (Natalis Chan) who has now treated Sung as a foe due to several incidents in the past. Ha offers to buy the restaurant from Sung. The restaurant meant a lot to Sung, thus he has a struggle within himself on whether to sell it off. Under this situation now, it leads him to the point of committing suicide because of feeling worthless in this world. But he was saved by the Angel (Eric Tsang). Angel has a conversation with Sung and tries to ask him to recall back his past in order to let him gain back some faith in himself.

Sung recalls back how his young self (Bosco Wong) first met with the cunning Ha Shek Sam (Michael Tse), how he met his wife Mei Yeung Yeung (Kate Tsui) and what are the things that he has regretted about.

Will the Angel be able to make Sung change his mind of committing suicide?

What are the things which has happened which has caused the breakdown in the friendship between Sung and Ha?

Is there any obstacles which Sung and Yeung Yeung have faced together in the past?

Let's check out this movie in your nearest cinema during this Chinese New Year season and decide whether you love Hong Kong too!       



Review: 
"I Love Hong Kong" franchise is back again with a great lineups of TVB actors, actresses and some veterans who we have not seen in years such as Alan Tam and Veronica Yip. The great line-ups of familiar faces are definitely delightful for the audience especially for the TVB fans.

Let's start off with the storyline. The plot this time shares some similarity with one of the old movie, "It's a Wonderful Life" whereby an angel appears to help a compassionate but frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been if he has never existed. The story telling for "I Love HK 2013" is actually quite good, wisely highlighting the important events which has led Sung to who he is now. It makes us know more about the character development of the protagonist in a well-balanced pace.  

However, beware to those of you who are expecting this movie to provide the similar amount of humors like in the previous installments. This movie in comparison with the previous ones, provides less high quality jokes for you to laugh at. Most of the jokes are either quite de javu or only works on those with low laughing threshold. But that does not mean that the movie totally sucks. It tackles the audience in another way, which is to provide some lessons in life, make us gain some insight of the importance of our existence, importance of family and also provide some sentimental moments which may touch your soul a little. So, if you are expecting a full-fledged funny comedy, you will most probably be disappointed!

Regarding the effects of the movie, there is some minor scenes whereby CGI effect has been used. In my opinion, I think the CGI effect is quite pointless and should have just been avoided . ( Eg. CGI effect during the conversation between Sung and the Angel on the rooftops. They should have just film that part without CGI because the unnecessary low-quality CGI effect flaws the scene.) 

As for the cast's performance, I personally think Bosco, Michael and Kate have truly stolen away the limelight this time. Mainly, I think because of their longer appearance time compared with other actors/actresses. Despite Alan and Veronica respectively being the protagonists in the modern setting, their appearance time is so brief that it feels like they are just cameos in this film. But nevertheless, all of their acting do not disappoint us. Bosco has done a great job in portraying the naive Sung and he is actually quite funny throughout the film. Michael has also done a great job in portraying a cheeky character and he has proven to us that he can act and not being fixated to just Laughing gor-alike character. Kate on the other hand is quite cute and lovable in this film. She has a good chemistry with Bosco in this film. Not to forget, I personally think Joyce Cheng has also done a pretty decent job in providing a little silly yet funny scenes for the audience.

About the soundtrack in this film, there were a few scenes whereby pre-recorded singing was done by the protagonists. These songs are parodies from some of those classical cantonese songs. It is quite entertaining actually because the lyrics that they have replaced inside the parodies are well-written and quite fitting with the the plot. However, the background music between each transition of scenes are just not as good and memorable as the previous installments.

Overall, I do not think it is the best in the franchise and I wouldn't say it is a super funny movie either, but it is definitely a meaningful Chinese New Year movie! 


What I like about the movie:
  1. Great line-ups of casts 
  2. Good story-telling with well-balanced pace
  3. Nice performance and nice chemistry between the casts
  4. Meaningful with some touching moments
What I dislike about the movie:
  1. Lack of high quality jokes
  2. Unnecessary CGI effects
  3. Less memorable background musical score

Verdict:

This movie deserves a 6.5/10.0!

A movie with its core aimed at providing some heartwarming moments and instill some insights for us to know the importance of our own existence!

Lower down your expectation for laughter and jokes, then you can enjoy the movie! If you are aiming for a laughing-out-loud, this is definitely not the movie for that!


(Reviewed by W.L Jack @ http:loong-updates.blogspot.com)


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