The Chinese title is an old Chinese saying as well
as a drinking game whose rule is similar to "Paper Scissors
Rock". Literally, it means naturally, every thing or
creature on earth has some kind of restraint on someone or
something; however at the same time one would definitely have
something or someone else that one would b subdued to.
Tycoon Hu, amusement park hot air balloon operator Dachun,
beer girl Huan'er, game-loving city girl Tang Tang and handsome
pianist Qiaobang are very different people living out their
respective lives in the big city. They should have nothing
to do with each other but a fateful turn of events pulls these
five people into a game. Who will emerge victorious in the
There are countless movies which never make it to our local
cineplexes – some good, some not so good, some simply
bad. Thanks to DVDs, we get to watch some of these movies.
This is also where you put yourself in a distributor’s
shoes, whether you should distribute this movie on the big
screen commercially. The latest such flick this reviewer had
watched on his trusty computer is this Wang Guangli-directed
heard of the guy? Don’t worry, we haven’t either.
directs some familiar faces like the acclaimed Mainland Chinese
actor Xia Yu (Dragon Squad, The Painted Veil), the award winning
and versatile Eric Tsang (Kung Fu Dunk, Infernal Affairs)
and sweetie pie Gigi Leung (he Magic Gourd, Turn Left turn
Right) in this 90-minute movie about different characters
whose lives become interconnected after a turn of events involving
a kidnap, a hot air balloon, a piano recital and a car accident.
Chinese translation of the movie title is a traditional game
phrase which reflects on the ripple effect of all things in
life. This is probably the highlight of the story of this
picture. While we shall not reveal too much here, we must
admit that this Mainland Chinese production does have a decent
premise which involves some clever writing in its script –
before it becomes gimmicky by intertwining too much contrived
plot lines together. It doesn’t help that a series of
sloppily graphics keep appearing in scenes with intentions
to perk up the otherwise dull movie.
the cast does deliver a decent performance which makes the
movie a little more watch-able. Other than the abovementioned
names, Mainland Chinese actors Tang Yan and Qi Ji are fresh
faces and may break some ground in their homeland. The actors
have nice chemistry with each other and despite their slapstick
and sometimes exaggerated performances; your viewing experience
won’t be that bad if your expectations weren’t
too high in the first place.
this was released in December 2007 in Mainland China, the
movie was probably aimed at the Chinese New Year crowd there.
There is even a nice little segment in the end credits where
the cast plays the traditional game with each other before
wishing the viewers a happy holiday. Like we mentioned at
the beginning of this review, there are many movies which
local distributors do not pick up. This forgettable and bland
movie would have never survived the battle that involved CJ7’s
Stephen Chow and Kung Fu Dunk’s Jay Chou. Not that you
as a viewer is missing much though.
This Code 3 DVD contains no bonus features.
disc’s visual transfer isn’t anything spectacular,
especially when the movie isn’t a must to watch on the
big screen. The soundtrack is presented in Mandarin.
Review by John Li