Adventure of the King
Directed by Chung Shue Kai
Adventure of the King is way the hell better than Flirting Scholar 2. Why am I bringing that up? Because Flirting Scholar 2 was made along with Adventure of the King as part of the same group (Chinastar’s 5510 production plan – 5 years, 500 million yuan budget, 10 films), and is a sort of spinoff from Flirting Scholar 2 (which is a prequel to the Stephen Chow film Flirting Scholar) Adventure of the King is also an adaptation of the play The Matching of Dragon and Phoenix, which has been made into film several times, most recently as Chinese Odyssey 2002. So just imagine that Micheal Bay directed Romeo and Juliet and had Sam Witwicky wandering around going “No no no no no no no!” just because he wants to set classic plays in his universe.
Flirting Scholar 2 was absolutely awful. The worst films are bad comedies, because their entire reason for existing is to make us laugh. Failing at that becomes a big ball of sadness that can rarely be fixed by just going to town and mocking the film. Flirting Scholar 2 had no reason to exist except to make money off of dumb people who thought Stephen Chow would show up. He didn’t. It is basically a Hong Kong version of those Jim Carrey-less Jim Carrey movie sequels like Ace Ventura Jr., Dumb and Dumberer, and Son of the Mask. With that wonderful film as the opening movement of the 5510 plan, one would think that things would only go downhill from that low valley. How wrong I was!
|Emperor Zhu Zhengde/Lee Siu-Lung (Richie Ren Xian-Qi) – He’s the emperor, and he had an adventure. And he’s also a king. King Emperor. Not one of them evil Emperors like in Star Wars. At least not in the film, maybe in real life he was a jerk, I don’t know, I wasn’t in China back in the day when he was in charge. While with amnesia, takes the name Lee Siu-Lung (aka Bruce Lee)
|Phoenix (Barbie Hsu Hsi-Yuan) – Phoenix’s character a delight, constantly beating everyone with a whip and yelling. This is the first Barbie Hsu character that I didn’t find annoying or boring. Even her over the top crazy lady turn in Reign of Assassins pushed my patience.
|Lord Sima The Royal Historian (Law Kar-Ying) – The Royal Historian’s job is to chronicle the life of Emperor Zhu Zhengde, and spends most of the film making proclamations and writing them down in his Royal Log. This is both annoying to everyone in the movie and hilarious to everyone watching the movie. Law Kar-Ying is in both Metallic Attraction: Kungfu Cyborg and Future X-Cops.
|Commander Chen The Royal Bodyguard (Bruce Leung Siu-Lung) – When you bodyguard is Bruce Leung, you’re in pretty good hands.
|Mr. McFortune (Wu Ma) – Kentacky Fried Chicken’s answer to Colonel Sanders is Mr. McFortune. Have you ever been to Kentacky? They really need a new decorator… Wu Ma’s been in film forever, and was recently seen here in Haunted House Elf.