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The Wacky Existentialism of Jeffrey Lau's "A Chinese Odyssey"

Jeffrey Lau's A Chinese Odyssey - Part One: Pandora's Box and A Chinese Odyssey - Part Two: Cinderella (2015) are showing August and September on Mubi in the United States.During the last Golden Age of Hong Kong cinema, the period between the 1984 Joint Declaration and the 1997 Handover, generic cycles moved with lightning rapidity. The speed and sheer volume of production, combined with the relatively small group of creative professionals, meant that a genre could be born, reach its peak, and die out within a few short years. The Heroic Bloodshed cycle, for example, can be said to have started in 1986 with A Better Tomorrow, reached its peak with The Killer and A Better Tomorrow III in 1989, and had its last gonzo gasps in 1992 with Hard-Boiled and Full Contact. By the time of the genre’s decline, Chow Yun-fat’s stardom in the colony had been eclipsed by Stephen Chow,

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