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黑馬王子 (1999)
Prince Charming

Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 05/30/2005
Summary: must-see for Andy Lau fans

[1999 was a good year.] Andy Lau Tak Wah stars as ’Wah’ in the Wong Jing scripted film. Wah is a ‘wat jai’ wannabe who sells pirate vcd’s and works as a motorbike messenger with riding skills. Lau has quite a presence on screen , something quite different from his recent work in Fascination Amour and Conman. Standard WJ production values used here give the movie that ‘just shot’ feeling. Street scenes feature nighttime HK crowds [mainly young women] standing around hoping to catch a glimpse of superstar Andy at work. Interiors are shot in brightly lit, cheaply decorated sets. WJ put his money into the casting of this film and he gets some great comedic performances out of the actors. Amazing Deannie Ip, cast as Wah’s mom, and Yu Rong Guong, cast as Michelle Reis’ dad, are surprisingly good. Nick Cheung is very funny as Andy’s sidekick. Honorable mention to Suki Kwan who is cast as Nick Cheung’s frustrated significant other.

Ms. Reis does not have much to do except look good. She plays the rich girl from Shanghai seeking her long lost mother. When on a business trip to HK with her father, she slips away, looking for her mom. She helps Andy and his pal Nick when they get in trouble with some triad underlings. He then helps her in her quest. Meanwhile her dad thinks she has been kidnapped for ransom by Andy and his crew who have, in fact, thwarted the real kidnappers' attempts. Hokey action sequence at the end of the film total screws up what is a very well written and poignant story. A must-see for Andy Lau fans.

Review copyright 1999 J. Crawford

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: JohnR
Date: 11/23/2004
Summary: It's got laughs gallore, why insist on a plot?

Maybe I have low expectations, but I thought this movie was funny. Deannie Yip just tears it up; she's hilarious! Andy is Andy, and that's ok by me. Michelle Reis is just there to look good and of course she carries that off in spades. If you're looking for some intellectual Woody Alllen type comedy, this isn't it. But if light hearted and ribald is your cup of tea, this will quench your thirst. I give it 7 out of 10.

Reviewed by: AkiraRus
Date: 07/16/2004
Summary: Typical Wong Jing Comedy

Typical Wong Jing comedy - much like a loose remake (or maybe rip-off?) of "Dances with Dragon". Michelle Reis is bland, but Deanie Yip and Andy Lau are excellent. If this simple romcom is worth of any attention than only because of them too.

Reviewed by: Sydneyguy
Date: 02/27/2003
Summary: Prince Boring!!

Ok the movie wasn't a total disaster. You had a good cast and had a few laughs but the plot is just same formula stuff. The movie felt very short to me even though it does run a normal movie length.I assume it's because very little happens.

Prince Charming doe not live up to its title. There is very little that is charming about Andy Lau's character. There are a lot more better romantic comedies around.


Reviewed by: i am b
Date: 01/19/2003

i thought Andy and Deannie were really funny in this movie~its nice too see that there was really no "suave" characters in this film since it would've taken away from the comical antics~i jus wonder about the names of HK characters sumtimes..Ice? Tart? SALAD? yikes. the director should've made this strictly comedy because the romance portion doesnt mix in as the way, the dog is too cute..Andy mistaking it as a cat was quite humorous for me~my dad didnt like the fact that there was so much cursing and sexual inferences but my Chinese isnt that great so it didnt matter to me. recommended to those who have nothing to watch on TV.

Reviewed by: danton
Date: 03/04/2002

What is it with Michelle Reis? One of the most beautiful actresses to ever grace the screen, she seems to bring out the worst in some directors. The one really bad movie Stanley Kwan did was Island Tales. The usually reliable Gordon Chan couldn't deliver with Armageddon. Drunken Master 3 was a disaster. And then there was the recent dog movie (EDHHD) which simply ranks as one of the worst HK movies of all time. I'm not saying this is Michelle's fault, she's proven she can act, and obviously she has been in some very good movies too, but lately her career seems rather hit and miss.

So with that in mind, I watched this movie with some initial trepidation. Not that it takes any outside factor to bring out the worst in Wong Jing - he has shown that he is impervious to anything resembling film aesthetics, and is content to churn out forgettable pieces of fluff and/or exploitation, ignoring critics while shooting 3 movies simultaneously and keeping both eyes firmly focused on the box office returns. He does so again with this predictable, formula-driven romantic comedy that doesn't even pretend to have a coherent script but relies instead on the star power of the cast and on the use of as many genre cliches as possible. Wong Jing movies always seem to presume the audience is suffering from Attention Deficit Disorder: is the romantic comedy getting boring? Let's turn the movie into a kidnapping thriller! Bored with that? Let's make it a chick with a disease film... And so on...

But back to the movie: Andy Lau Tak-Wah, sporting one of the ugliest hairdos ever, stars as a lowlife Mongkok loser called Wah, who spends his days idling around with his friend Tart (Nick Cheung) and his mother (played by the very funny Deannie Yip, who almost steals this movie). By means of a series of completely unbelievable conincidences, Wah runs into a rich girl from Shanghai called Ice (Michelle Reis) who's looking for her long lost mother. She has no place to stay, Wah just got dumped by his girlfriend, so things happen as they do in the world of Wong Jing movies - the two of them hook up (what I wanna know is why do I never run into Michelle Reis... ???). Lots of comedic antics ensue (most of them involving Nick Cheung getting beat up), but in the end how can the two stars not fall in love with each other? They oblige. Except there's also a band of kidnappers on the loose, and when they strike, things get complicated. Michelle is in peril and Andy is being framed as the kidnapping suspect. So now we get a couple of car chases and some action thrills, as well as more plot coincidences (Michelle knows sign language, Andy's mother knows Michelle's mother, Andy's ex girlfriend knows the kidnappers...). In the end, Andy gets to do the heroic thing and save the damsel in distress, except that nobody was wearing seatbelts, so now we're in disease film mode - Michelle looking pretty in a hospital bed, and only a partial liver transplant can save her. Any volunteers? I'll leave the rest to your imagination. If you've seen any Wong Jing romantic comedies, you know that somewhere along the line a kiss and lots of fireworks come into play.

The movie is no masterpiece, but it does provide for some laughs and some feel good moments of the guilty pleasure kind (such as seeing Nick Cheung get hit on the head a lot...). So if you like the stars, I'd give it a marginal recommendation.

Reviewed by: jasonlau128
Date: 08/24/2000
Summary: this is the mother crushing pile of schnit

I don't believe this schnit. For starters, the vcd did not have a case for it and also it was filmed in the cinema - the mobile phones and guys walking around give it away. Also the quality was bad, it was jerky and the sound was real bad.

So naturally I took the vcd back to the vendor and complained; he told me to go to "hum ga chan" on "puk street". That did not help so I called the police and they sorted it out. But still I did not get a refund. So I went back and found that the store had closed down. What did they expect if they don't give you even the vcd cases to people. So I searched around and round and found him. It was not too good. He then called his mates and they took me to their front door and beat me with a base ball bat.

Later I found out they were triads and those vcd's were pirate.

Oh yeah, the film was boring, not funny and was painful to watch - especially when you just got beaten up.

And they don't even find the mother in the end.

Reviewed by: ryan
Date: 11/21/1999
Summary: Prince Charming (1999)

This year we have only two Hong Kong movies for the Easter Holidays. Out of the two, WONG Jing's 'Prince Charming' seems to be the first one which started its promotion by having a series of lobby cards for the story. With the combination of 'The Conman' (1999)'s Andy LAU Tak-wah and Nike CHEUNG Ka-fai, it is expected that it will be a love comedy.

The story of 'Prince Charming' with the Prince Wah-dee (Andy LAU Tak-wah) who is a Y&D type people in Mongkok with his mon YIP Tak-han. Wah-dee's friend Tart (Nike CHEUNG Ka-fai) is a guy who would like to whore from time to time but with a girl Suki KWAN Sau-mei. Ice POK (Michelle REIS), a girl with the background from a rich family but her mon is not with her since early ages. With the opportunity that her Dad brings her to Hong Kong for a few days, she intended to find her mon by leave from her Dad. Accidently Ice met Wah-dee and started the love.

The main expectation from 'Prince Charming' is to have a love comedy as we can see the actor Nike CHEUNG who has been funny in 'The Conman' (1999). In this point, I think you wouldn't be too disappointed as the movie is quite funny but the focus is on YIP Tak-han. YIP Tak-han in thew movie is very natural while most of the laughters were brought from her. For example, when she explained to Ice's Dad with the letter from Ice's Mon, the scene is very funny. Relatively, though CHEUNG is also funny in the movie, he does not have much to show off his potentials.

In view of the plot, I consider it sounds like a movie very familiar with some standard structure. However, it seems that the plot is okay. As we are expecting a movie with laughters, the plot is relatively less important in this case. In view of this factor, I consider the plot is okay.

In terms of performance, I consider the performance of YIP Tak-han is the best. Maybe her best performance rewards her to be appeared in the news ad. as the selling point. In fact, her performance is cool by putting suitable diaglogue in suitable situation.

For Nike CHEUNG Ka-fai, when compared with 'The Conman', it seems that he has not got enough chance for acting. I think CHEUNG has paired with Suki KWAN should have something funny. Maybe the performance of YIP is too outstanding, CHEUNG seems to be less shining. For Andy LAU, I think his performance is okay.

One thing you may wish to note is that WONG Jing seems to find it hard to fill in the ending and they have to put up the tricts in 'The Conman' at the end of 'Prince Charming' again -- playing tricks on advertisement.

In short, 'Prince Charming' is a movie which reached its own expectation. The performance of YIP Tak-han is excellent while Nike CHEUNG seems lack of chance of show his acting. Though the ending is a bit typical, it is a movie for enjoyment.