6 August 2014 | OllieSuave-007
Spectacular Chinese Western-style film with an all-star cast!
This is a one-of-a-kind Hong Kong movie filmed in the Western style and directed my martial arts great Sammo Hung, where he brought in an all-star cast including Hung himself, Yuen Biao, Eric Tsang, Richard Ng, Lydia Sum, Kenny Bee, Lam Ching Ying, Wah Yuen, Corey Yuen and Rosamund Kwan. It's a story where Ching Fong-Tin (Sammo Hung) tries to makes amends for his past by attempting to return wealth and prosperity to his hometown. In doing so, he plans to stall an express train full of wealthy passengers in hopes they will lodge at his town and spend money on its amenities. Meanwhile, a group of mountain bandits wants to rob the train, where three samurais in possession of a treasure scroll are on board.
It is an action-packed film from start to finish that will give you pure fun and excitement - a film that has just about everything in it: comedy, adventure, martial arts, romance and drama. Each of the characters has his/her own unique charm, development and relevance in the movie that makes him/her stand out in the story. Hung took great care in directing that made every one of the many characters important, inserting humor and drama where appropriate and creating fun and interesting subplots (like the town's renegade security officers attempting to rob the train; Richard Ng's character's silly love affair; the rival between legendary martial artists Master Wong and Master Shek) while not swaying away from the main point of the story. He keeps the plot going at a fast pace and makes every scene captivating, leaving no room for boring fillers.
The special and visual effects are realistic and believable and the script is an awesome piece of work - it makes you feel you are along the wild adventure and just having fun with the ride. The music score by Anders Nelsson, Alastair Monteith-Hodge and Chin Yung Shing is very catchy and dynamic, filming location is breath-taking and the acting was spot-on. There are some silly and goofy moments from some of the cast members, but it is not done overboard.
With such a large cast and an exciting story, I just wished that the movie was made a little longer to have more time to accommodate the actors and action sequences. But overall, it is one of the best movies I have seen come out of Hong Kong and certainly one that is highly recommended if you are a fan of wild Hong Kong Cinema. If you are not, it is still a great movie to watch for the casual viewers!