What do you get when you have a precious jewel, a group of
bumbling thieves intent on getting their hands on it, the
mob wanting a piece of the action and a loyal but mischievous
security guard all thrown in together? Crazy Stone is a fast-paced,
wise-cracking caper comedy that will have you engaged and
entertained from the beginning till the end.
Stone was hailed by many (critics and casual viewers) as the
best film from the Focus Films: First Cuts Series and after
reviewing the Crazy Stone vcd, it’s not hard to see
the reason for that.
plot setup is simple and even formulaic. A factory owner who
is facing eviction, found a precious jade and plans to sell
it in order save the factory. In order to fetch a good price
for the jade, the factor owner created an exhibition in a
makeshift temple to create publicity.
attracting the right attention, the publicity also attracted
three small time crooks, one international professional thief,
an unscrupulous land developer and even the factory owner’s
own wastrel son’s attention.
defense that the factory owner has is one staff, Bao Shihong,
who studied as a detective in the local police force previously,
to head a makeshift security team to protect the jade during
a joy to follow Bao Shihong as he uses the bare minimum resources
at hand, converting them into high security deterrence to
the jade thieves. You won’t look at a urinal sensor
the same way after watching this movie. The character’s
ingenuity seems to reflect on the director, Ning Hao’s,
ability to turn a low budget production into one with high
enjoyable part of the film lies in the execution of handling
the multiple characters’ motivation and tying seemingly
different events effectively together. It examines the cause
and effect that each individual’s action has on the
others and even the most minute actions can have the most
unexpected effect on rest.
Stone was to be compared to any recent classic films, Ning
Hao’s quick editing and distinctive characters often
echoes the same kinetic jives and plot twists that were presented
in Guy Ritchie’s Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
article once mentioned that this is an excellent film for
local filmmakers to study or refer to. This film demonstrates
strong handling of characters and strong structure of story
telling even when the director didn’t have famous actors
to work with. The most wonderful highlight was that he pulled
off an entertaining film with limited budget constrain that
most (if not all) local filmmakers faces and complains about.
Even casual viewers will discover the gem that hidden behind
the veil of cheap production.
VCD comes with English and Chinese subtitles which are useful
even for local Chinese viewers who might have some difficulties
in understanding some of the accent. A trailer for Dragon
Tiger Gate is included before the film starts and a trailer
for Crazy Stone at the end of the film credits.
by Richard Lim Jr