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HAPPY GO LUCKY (Singapore)


Director: Harry Yap
Cast: Fann Wong, Richard Low, Patricia Mok, Lau Leng Leng, Marcus Chin
RunTime: 1 hr 43 mins
Released By: Cathay-Keris Films
Rating: PG
Official Website:

Opening Day: 4 March 2010


A hardcore gambler from young, Hock Lee Poh (Richard Low) is at the same time, an ardent believer of Feng Shui. Always down on his luck, he continues to indulge in gambling all the time. His eldest daughter Donna (Patricia Mok), though petty and calculative, spends all her time and money on lavish nightlife and hunky social escorts – till she loses everything in the end. Fu Xin, Poh’s illegitimate second daughter (Fann Wong) is born at an extremely inauspicious hour and thus labeled as the “jinx” of the family.

Despite the nasty label on her, Fu Xin actually is a surreptitious ‘Lucky Star’ who always manages to avert precarious situations; turning unfavourable conditions into favourable ones, having the Midas touch in everything she does. The straight-forward, unassuming and childlike Fu Xin sacrifices a lot for the family. And in a twist of fate and luck, Fu Xin unexpectedly helps Poh to win a hefty sum of money.

As the plot continues, Poh and Donna find themselves stranded along the streets of Cambodia in a failed attempt to recoup their losses at the gambling tables. Fortunately, Fu Xin arrives to their rescue after a chance encounter with Mr. Morgan, a casino magnate who takes an affinity to Fu Xin. We then see a transformation of luck and favour for the Poh family as Fu Xin and Mr. Morgan become good friends. The blossoming friendship enables the family to have a secure, stable life and brings a happy reunion for the Poh family. The ending marks a joyous reunion and the “turning over a new leaf” for Poh, thus highlighting the fact that family love triumphs over everything.

Movie Review:

For Singaporeans who have grown up used to a staple slew of Singapore made movies at the cinemas come Chinese New Year, 2010 must have been a surprise for most. For the first time in as many years, there were no J-Team or Raintree Pictures production ringing in the big bucks at the box office. As a result, the new releases have readied themselves for March releases starting with Happy-Go-Lucky, starring Fann Wong and Richard Low.

Directed by first-time movie director but seasoned TV-director, Harry Yap, the movie revolves around the life of Fu Xin (Fann Wong), a foot masseur who is regarded by her father, Hock Lee Poh (Richard Low) as a jinx to the family as she was born at a superstitious hour when he had lost big money gambling. He continues to believe that she is the cause of his constant losses at gambling and often looks at his other daughter, Donna (Patricia Mok) as his lucky charm. Despite being treated unfairly and being underappreciated by both her father and sister, Fu Xin continues to be patient and cooks dinner for them every night. However, a stroke of luck befalls Fu Xin and this changes fate.

The one grouse this reviewer has going into the movie would be the fact that once again, Richard Low and gambling seem to go hand-in-hand. While the whole gambling and casino issue may be topical with the opening of the integrated resorts and all, it almost feels like Singapore movies with such themes are becoming far too common. That said, the production value on the other hand seems to be slightly better with scenes taking place in more locations locally and even to Cambodia.

The actors must be commended for doing a good job in their respective roles but there seems to be a dearth of interesting roles for Singaporean actors to play especially when actors are seen playing the same roles over and over again. This could also be attributed to the themes and styles of our Singapore movies that seem to grace the box-office (save for our indie movies of course).

There were genuinely funny moments that could be found in the movie, a highlight of which was a scene involving the Fu Xin, Donna and Hock Lee Poh. Lee Poh gets Donna to purchase a 4D ticket for him and when she forgets, she decides to get Fu Xin to purchase it instead and she soon realizes she has little time left before the shop closes. When she reaches the counter, she forgets the number in question and buys one of her own. This leads to the scene at home when she returns to find Donna and Lee Poh anxiously awaiting her return. The different characters’ reactions as they discover the number she had bought and how it affects Lee Poh is a hoot.

However, the movie was also filled with a lot of contrivances and unnecessary scenes which continues the trend of Singapore filmmakers believing that our moviegoers are more acceptable of slapstick scenes that serve no purpose or advance a story and only there to elicit laughter. Also, scenes that lead to blatant product placements or pro-campaign messages are a no-no in a movie and it just elicits more groans that anything else.

Unfortunately, the pacing is a bit haphazard with ideas being thrown around leaving the movie to be one unorganized mess. Sure, this is a watchable movie in comparison to its predecessors which have been screened before but there is still a lot of work to be done to improve the standards of our movies.

Movie Rating:

(If one leaves the cinema feeling a lot happier than before, than one is really fortunate)

Review by Mohamad Shaifulbahri


. The Wedding Game (2009)

. Money No Enough 2 (2008)

. Ah Long Pte Ltd (2008)

. Singapore Dreaming (2007)

. Just Follow Law (2007)

. Money No Enough DVD (1998)




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