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Linger Review


Terrible
A general rule of thumb for ghost movies: When neither the living nor the dead characters show any signs of life, you have a serious problem. Such is the failure of Linger, a Hong Kong film with virtually the same premise as Ghost. Poor character development, lifeless acting, a pedestrian script, and unnecessary subplots make Linger pale in comparison to the movie it copied (which I never imagined to be possible). And though director Johnnie To's attempt at horror/melodrama is tragically hilarious, this film won't make you laugh or weep. The only lingering emotion you'll have is regret -- from the time and money lost to this film.

Linger centers on a college couple, Dong (Vic Chou) and Yan (Li Bing Bing), whose relationship isn't strong from the start. We learn Dong is cheating on his girlfriend, the college "beauty queen," to sleep with Yan. In the introduction of the movie, Yan is wearing Dong's basketball jersey in front of Dong's girlfriend -- a move so conspicuous it's silly -- which instigates the adulterous couple's fight, leading to a shockingly unrealistic motorcycle accident that results in Dong's death.

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The Accidental Spy Review


Weak
Jackie Chan, bless his 48-year-old heart, has finally slowed down his breakneck pace of filmmaking, which would sometimes reach up to five chopsocky flicks in a year.

Aside from Rush Hour 2, The Accidental Spy is Chan's only film from 2001, and while the star is slowing down, so are his films. The tepid Rush Hour series notwithstanding, Chan's action scenes are a little less extreme than in the past, with longer exposition sequences between them, and with fewer gags to break the tedium. Squirting lotion in a bad guy's face is about as funny as it gets here.

Continue reading: The Accidental Spy Review

Goddess of Mercy Review


Good
Like America 150 years ago, today's China has sophisticated modern cities in the east and an untamed wild west where everyone seems to have a gun. Goddess of Mercy bounces between these two worlds, taking its indefatigable heroine An Xin (Vicky Zhao) on a journey with enough action, drama, and leading men to fill three movies. It's an operatic eyeful that has won much acclaim in Asia but appears on these shores without a theatrical release. DVD may have to suffice.

We first meet An Xin mopping up in the Beijing tae kwan do school where she works. Described as a "bumpkin" by the city slickers who practice there, she catches the eye of man-about-town Yang Rui (Yulong Liu), a young playboy who has a brand new Jeep, a Vuitton-obsessed girlfriend, and lots of cologne in his bathroom. It's love at first sight for Yang Rui, but An Xin brushes him aside saying she's not interested and hinting that she has many dark secrets. When he persists she even kicks him in the face, but she can't shake him, and soon she's succumbing to his charms as he swears off his gallivanting lifestyle.

Continue reading: Goddess of Mercy Review

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