« Learn Something | Main | Why Michael Wong has a Career »

March 23, 2005

"House of Fury" review

HOUSE OF FURYHOUSE OF FURY, directed by and starring Stephen Fung, is the kind of movie Hong Kong used to knock off without event thinking. In the late 80's this was the kind of hard-hitting, emotionally alive, shamelessly mainstream crowdpleaser that HK directors could release without even getting out of bed. These days it's an event.

Anthony Wong stars as an embarrassing dad who gets kidnapped and his kids (Stephen Fung and Gillian Chung) have to rescue him. Wu Ma is there, as is Daniel Wu (his presence in every movie is now required by law) and Michael Wong plays an evil guy who's bald and in a wheelchair sort of like Christopher Reeve gone bad. Josie Ho does her by-now trademarked silent killer lady thing, and the action is by Yuen Wo-ping. It's a lot more reminiscent of his ruff stuff TIGER CAGE days, rather than his more recent, more elegant choreography.

But is it any good? Yes -- there's wall to wall action, the storyline is actually funny and original (until the plot mechanics overwhelm it in the last third -- leaving you with just the action), and there's even a cute little pig for those who require such things.

Two questions: can Anthony Wong be bad in a movie? Playing a painfully awkward dad he dishes out the action and the pathos by the heaping handful, and one wonders what it would take to get a bad performance out of this guy. Question two: Charlene or Gillian? The Twins (Hong Kong's ubiquitous pop duo who are not only not twins but who aren't even related) are both in HOUSE OF FURY but Charlene just has to look fresh and unblemished, while Gillian gets to throw down on the kung fu (watch for her stunt doubles -- there's a great shot that could be Gillian except for the hairy, muscular forearm of some guy down in the front of the frame). I used to favor Charlene with her great big pumpkin head, but my allegiances have wandered over to Gillian with this flick. Her cuteness zips along at mach 5 while her butt-kicking is so completely ferocious that it might make fluffy puppies cry.

March 23, 2005 at 01:42 AM in Film Reviews | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference "House of Fury" review:


Post a comment