1 July 2002 | ETCmodel02
Beautiful though a bit shallow
This film is practically a musical in the traditional sense, with a degree of a nod to Singing in the Rain and West Side Story in scenes that play out wonderfully. The supporting cast is rich and could have stood to have had more time in the film. The main story is traditional and no deeper than that of a typical Fred Astaire film. The cruelty in the touching climax gets a rather hollow feeling reversal into happiness, but otherwise the personal moments in the film feel sincere and are often surprisingly warm, original and believable. The developing friendship between the lead women is truly amusing, and Sandra Ng's roommates are hilarious. The cinematography aspects of this are far richer and carefully crafted than a typical Hong Kong romantic comedy (musical) to the level of Shall We Dance from Japan, although this is a lighter story than Shall We Dance in most regards. Anita Mui is apt casting as she was a huge teen pop star in HK in the late Eighties, and is well matched against Andy Lau. Sandra Ng is a longstanding comedian and actress, and additionally is now the spokesperson for a weight loss and physical fitness chain in HK for her success in toning up and slimming down for this role. For those who might have rather seen pretty women in the leads for pretty sake (although I think Sandra Ng is a god) go rent Wesley's Mysterious File. There is an example of pretty leads in a 2001 film from HK starring with Andy Lau, and evidence as well that pretty cast doesn't mean good film making. Dance of a Dream, if nothing else, is solid film making and very appropriate casting. No one could have pulled of that role but Sandra Kwan-Yue Ng.