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A Chinese Ghost Story II

Hong Kong 1990
produced by
Tsui Hark for Film Workshop/Golden Princess
directed by Ching Siu-Tung
starring Joey Wong (= Wang Tsu-Hsien), Leslie Cheung, Michelle Reis, Jacky Cheung, Ku Feng, Lau Shun, Waise Lee, Wu Ma, Lau Siu-Ming, To Siu-Chun
screenplay by Kan Keito, Lau Tai-Muk, based on characters by Pu Songling, action directors: Sammy Chow, Patrick Tam

Chinese Ghost Story

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Available on DVD !

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Always make sure of DVD-compatibility !!!
As a set-up for this story, you might have to read my review on A Chinese Ghost Story first ...

Heartbroken from losing the beautiful ghost Xiu Hsing (Joey Wong Tsu-Hsien), poor bill-collector Ling (Leslie Cheung) returns to his hometown, to find everything changed to the worse: First he almost falls into the hands of a bunch of cannibals, then he is arrested for a crime he didn't commit & about to be decapitated.

Only thanks to a ´half-crazy cellmate (Ku Feng) can he escape, but unfortunately his path takes him - & Taoist priest Autumn (Jaky Cheung) whose horse he accidently steals, to the Righteous Villa, which is positively haunted.

The first bunch of ghosts who attack them though prove to be not ghosts, but Windy (Joey Wong Tsu-Hsien again) & Moon (Michelle Reis), who want to rescue their father Lord Fu (Lau Siu-Ming) with a bunch of rebels - & they confuse Ling with elder Chu & think he is going to give them helpful advice - which he does by some odd coinidence. Furthermore, Windy positively is the splitting image of Ling's ghostly lover Xiu Hsing, & he falls in love with her even though she is betrothed to somebody else, , while Moon immediately falls in love with Ling.

After the girls & their companions are gone though, Ling & Autumn encounter the real, giant monster of the villy, & it takes all their efforts - & a big portion of misplaced magic - to chase the monster off (or does the monster chase them off ?)

However, as soon as they are off, Windy & Moon & their rebels return to Righteous Villa, & Ling sees it as his dutry to come after them to warn them of the monster, if possible defend them - which he isn't all that good at. & even Autumn, who has come back too, seems to be no match for the monster. Then though prison transport carrying Lord Fu & led by master swordsman Hu stops by, too, & though their enemy, Hu helps them get rid of the monster.

After the fight Hu, impressed by the bravery of his adversaries, decides to take their side & persuade the High Priest (Lau Shun) to show mercy to Lord Fu ...

Little does Hu know though that the High Priest is really an evil demon who, after having heard his plea for mercy, sends Hu away, kills most of the rebels & makes Lord Fu, Moon & Autumn his prisoners.

& while Ling & Windy, who have miraculously escaped, go fetch Buddhist Priest Yang (Wu Ma - see part one for his background, too) as a back-up, Hu traces down & frees the High Priest's 3 prisoners, even if the ensuing battle first costs him his arm, then even his life.

In a showdown, Ling, Windy, Moon, Autumn, Yang & Lord Fu all fight the High Priest, who soon turns out to be a giant tentacled flying demon, & Autumn & Yang even land in the demon's stomach before taking it apart from the inside - a feat which Autumn does not survive - & thus ending his existence.

But is the ending happy ?

Despite Windy & Ling having discovered their love for each other, Windy is going to marry somebody else, & Ling can only helplessly watch her wedding procession ...

But of course, in the very last minute of the film, it seems that Windy has decided otherwise, left her own wedding & rides off with Ling ...

 

Despite the fact that this sequel is no match for the original A Chinese Ghost Story, as it lacks a real coherent storyline & the love story seems little more than a rehap from part one with much of the magic missing, this sequel is still a charming movie of its own. A fast moving plot, good effects & action-sequences, brilliant set-pieces & above all great characters & competent actors handling them make this one an entertaining film.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD