My Wife is a Gangster 3
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Korean title: Jopog Manura 3 (조폭 마누라3)
Running time: 115 minutes
Directed by: Cho Jin-gyu
Cast you care about: Shu Qi (Aryong)
Lee Beom-soo (Ki-chul)
They just keep coming. Or do they? Wave goodbye to the moderately attractive Shin Eun-kyung, say hello to Shu Qi, sex incarnate, bitch-queen of Hong Kong soft porn actresses turned movie star, the Chinese version of Angelina Jolie. She ain't nobody's wife, so fuck all that. Just hit me with another.
I hate proverbs. Still, if a picture says more than a thousand words, let's get the first two pages out the way.
This is Shu Qi. Ok, on to the movie.
Aryong, daughter of a Hong Kong triad boss, heads off to Korea to lay low for a while because the other gangs suspect her of having killed one of their leaders. In Korea she is picked up by a few henchmen of one of her father's contacts, with Ki-Chul leading the bunch. He doesn't speak Chinese, she doesn't speak Korean. Also, she's really, really hot. For best results, do a quick google image search with filters turned off. Like so many Hong Kong / Taiwanese / Chinese actresses, Shu Qi took the short route to fame and was well on her way in the soft porn business when something went wrong and she went mainstream instead. It could have been so beautiful, but you know, it still is, except this time with clothes on. No big deal (although I cry inside).
Oh, right, the movie. Err... Ok, look. She's in this Korea place, hanging out with Ki-chul and the gang, and then this horrifying Korean chick comes in and starts work as a translator between the two. She's piss-annoying because she translates everything wrongly and unfortunately, Cho Jin-gyu doesn't realise that if it isn't funny the first time, it won't be the next fifty times around. Try to ignore her for the rest of the film, she doesn't add anything anyway, although perhaps she was put in for purpose of contrast, further enhancing Aryong's status of powerslut with kickass skills to boot.
Let's see, what else happens. Ah, yes, at some point, some people come wanting to kill Aryong, but obviously they fail (nobody touches Shu Qi except for a handful of lower grade B-porn actors in the past), and eh, that's it. Oh, her father gets blown up in Hong Kong, she's all sad about it, flies back to hear his dying words, hands all asses that need be handed, and then marries Ki-chul because at least one out of three needed a happier ending. There, movie done.
Seriously though, Shu Qi does a much better job at portraying the character of gangster queen, because she's cold as ice, and yet hot as a really hot bitch at the same time. My favourite part of the movie? When she's in a car, crashing down a stairwell, gyrating in Ki-chul's lap. It's no coincidence that she does this scene particularly well. She may have seen some practice.
Final rating: Three stars!
Had it been just Shu Qi, me, and 115 minutes, this movie would have gotten five stars without much thought. However, I had to take away two because there's all this other crap in this film that nobody really cares about. I say work with what you have, Cho Jin-gyu. You had the goods, man, now where's your work?
posted by Mab at 18:08, ,
My Wife is a Gangster 2
Monday, October 08, 2007
Korean title: Jopog Manura 2 (조폭 마누라2)
Release date: 2003
Running time: 110 minutes
Directed by: Jeong Heung-soon
Cast you care about: Shin Eun-kyung (Mantis)
Park Joon-gyu (Yoon)
Zhang Ziyi (Cameo)
Mantis is back in part two of part one! If I said there's rape, murder, fighting schoolgirls, self-mutilation, transsexuality, and abduction in this movie - it'd all be true! Sounds like hentai! But it's not.
I’m dreaming… of a white Christmas. Imagine baseball bats. A rooftop battle, whilst the neon-lit Santa on the background merrily waves you into the new year. Cue helicopter, cue scissors, cue Mantis. My Wife is a Gangster 2 begins.
First thing of notice: Shin Eun-kyung is far hotter in this sequel than she was in the original movie. The fight scenes seem more vivid too, more violent. Promising! The rooftop rumble progresses and some modern-day ninjas come jumping in to throw some lethal crackers around. Caught off guard, Mantis leaves the building. Literally.
However cartoonish, as she falls, a truck bearing a trampoline and another carrying chickens drive past and she manages to land right on top of them. Unconscious, she gets driven around for a couple of blocks and is then thrown off in a violent turn. Enter the new hero – Yoon Jae-choi. Staggering home drunkenly after a night out on the town, he manages to avoid urinating on our battered female protagonist by noticing her just in time. Real casual-like, he reaches into her pockets, throws away her cell phone, and carries her off to his own home. Korea, I like your style.
A few years pass. Mantis, now named Tsu Tsu (much like a panda), has lost all memory of her life before the fall and so, in lieu of a better purpose, serves her self-made boss as a delivery girl for his Chinese restaurant. She spends her free time trying to remember who she was through various violent means – all she knows is that she’s good with scissors. He, on the other hand, spends his time trying to get into her pants and, ever the casual, even tries to rape her sometimes. But Tsu Tsu doesn’t remember that either, the morning after. A fair part of the movie passes as we witness Yoon and Tsu Tsu develop as close a relationship as they’re ever going to get, and Lee injects some more storyline by throwing in Ji-hyun, Yoon’s teenage daughter with a knack for violence.
Meanwhile, both her own gang and her rival from part 1, White Shark, have desperately been trying to find her. It doesn’t take long until the Shark runs into her, but, so his henchmen reason, in order to truly get revenge on her, they need to make her realize who she is first. They send in Junman, brother of eunuch Nanman, to do the job. After several attempts, just as he thinks she knows and moves in for the kill, he gets into an ‘accident’ and becomes impotent for life. Thus the mans slowly go extinct. Not long after, however, Sherry (Romeo’s girlfriend in part 1) drops in for some of the ol’ takeaway and recognizes Mantis. She reports back to headquarters, and they face her with her past.
Then, as you do, she falls off a roof again. You know, ‘cause that kind of shit just happens sometimes. Ever so miraculously, she recovers her memory and goes about taking care of White Shark. One step ahead of her, the Shark kidnaps Ji-hyun and will force her into prostitution, unless… Yoon betrays the random delivery girl he found on the street for his own daughter. A hard bargain, but he takes it. Mantis gets roughed up a little, Yoon feels remorse, comes in for the rescue, and dies. He should have watched more movies ‘cause I saw this one coming miles away. Still, you know, had I had a past of being female and all, I might have shed a tear, if only because Park Joon-gyu does perform his role as Yoon exceptionally well.
Mantis manages to rectify the whole situation and goes on to lead her former life as a gangster, no longer the wife of, but for convenience she’s taken his daughter along. Now what? Now it’s time for Zhang Ziyi, a familiar name in Asian cinema, and not quite the ugly duckling. Personally, a much anticipated moment. See, I bought the DVD for this movie in China, and in huge letters on the front it said ‘STARRING: ZHANG ZIYI, oh and also Shin Eun-kyung and some others’. At first I thought it was crap; it wouldn’t be the first time they’ve falsely informed me. I’ve seen the cast of Dawson’s Creek pasted on a National Geographic documentary. But, ‘lo, Zhang Ziyi does star in this movie.
The entire last three minutes.
Final rating: Four stars!
The student becomes the Sabum in My Wife is a Gangster 2. The first wasn't bad, but the second is better. Funnier, sexier, better acting (like you care). Still no particularly graphic violence or sex, so that's one star down, but up there on all other fronts. So if you're particularly fast - and I know a lot of you are - the three minutes of Ziyi at the end will be just enough for you. Watch the rest of the movie too, though.
posted by Mab at 17:57, ,
My Wife is a Gangster
Saturday, October 06, 2007
Korean title: Jopog Manura (조폭 마누라)
Release date: 2001
Running time: 105 minutes
Directed by: Cho Jin-gyu
Cast you care about: Shin Eun-kyung (Mantis)
Park Sang-myeon (Soo-il)
Ahn Jae-mo (Romeo)
Kim In-kwon (Boxers)
Mantis is the leader of a local gang, with Romeo and Boxers as two of her underlings. She marries a local retard to chill her dying sister out. Then a lot of stuff happens.
Rainy day. Perfect time for a bunch of men in suits to frolick around in the puddles with axes and baseball bats. Amidst all this fun, and just as one of the guys gets his head axed in, scissors fly and strike home. Enter the bitch-chick, Mantis, leader of the local rabble. She clears the floor and saves her buddies. Thus conclude the first 5 minutes of the movie.
Mantis, not the hottest ho' in town, is looking after the gang while her boss is on a well-earned holiday. Apart from running with scissors, she has been spending her time on tracing the whereabouts of her long lost sister, whom she was separated of as a child. When she finally finds her, it turns out that she's fatally ill and, of course, has a dying wish: Mantis must get married. Now I don't know about you people, but I guess dying kind of sucks so there'd be a lot of things that I would wish for if I had the chance, but this is not one of them. Anyhow, things are different in Korea, apparently. Mantis obliges.
The victim is a local near-retard called Soo-il. He's the slowest guy in town and therefore the perfect match. They meet, they marry, but is little sister happy? No she's not. Her FINAL final wish is for Mantis to get pregnant. Not really in a position to negotiate, I'd say, but our female gang boss goes for it. Basically, Soo-il has been sulking, all moody and emotional for not getting any up until this point, but this time around, Mantis is ready for rape. Now, I've been edumacated too, so I knew what was about to happen. No sweet loving here, 'cause I read on wikepedia that a female mantis is supposed to rip the male's head off after doing the deed. Imagine my disappointment then, when that didn't happen. She just got pregnant instead.
Well, the sister is really excited but dies anyway, so with that out of the way, it's time for more fighting. Some Japanese dude with knifes challenges our Korean heroine with scissors. A flashy fight scene ends with an impotent Jap. Ouch. He's still alive though, and ready to carve someone up.
This is where we add the 'cool' to this somewhat boring plot. See, throughout the entire movie, we've been able to peek inside the daily lives of two of Mantis' most loyal underlings, Boxers and Romeo. Incidentally, Romeo, with bleached hair and pink shirt, plays the best of parts. His girlfriend, Sherry, coaches Mantis on her way through sluttiness, her deepest conversations with Romeo being limited to 'shut up and do what I say, bitch' or 'ooh' and 'aah' and a variance thereof.
One of the recurring encounters Romeo has is with a local gang of pink-, blue-, and yellow-haired punks. The most sorry of this lot gets beaten up in a variety of ways whilst his friends leg it every time. Eventually, in a scene even I found somewhat sad, Romeo waits for his girlfriend to do the single nicest thing he's ever done - hide a ring in her rice - and he invariably runs into the rainbow-hair gang again. He treats them to a song, slaps the pink ranger around for a bit, but walks onto his knife. Romeo dies in Sherry's arms, his last words: 'you're so fucking pretty tonight'. Kind of charming.
Flash back to Mantis and the gang. They're pretty pissed off about their best man dying on them, and they blame the rival gang and Less-than-magic Johnson with the knives. They head over to their base, but get their asses kicked. Mantis arrives to help out, but being pregnant and all, she's not as legendary as she once was, so Mr. No-Boner gets his hands on her and, guess what, kicks her in the stomach for a bit of preemptive abortion.
Soo-il, by now familiar with the fact that his lovely wife is in fact a psycho gangster, is still a little bit pissed off about the whole ordeal, so decides to end this film and blows up the local karaoke parlor, and all the gangsters inside. Well, good for him.
After all, in this entire movie, he's been the only one to get bitch-slapped, raped, fooled, abused, AND married. I'd be less than happy, too.
Final rating: Three stars!
My Wife is a Gangster is a good watch. Although the real plot of the movie doesn't account for much, if porn can get away with it, so can the Koreans. Every other scene is one of Romeo and his entourage, which kept the whole thing flowing smooth like a lesbian jelly wrestling tournament. Reminiscent of the Germans, Soo-il ups the bodycount to 67 in the last few minutes of the game. Worthy.
posted by Mab at 16:59, ,
NOTE: Sexy sister twins
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Bit of redesigning going on. Meanwhile, check out the new sexy sister to this site. Twins!
posted by Mab at 23:15, ,
Thursday, April 12, 2007
One female samurai
Many male samurai
One homosexual samurai
Add female samurai to male samurai. Divide by 2. Add ninjas. Subtract ninjas. Add homosexual samurai. Subtract all male samurai. Subtract homosexual samurai. What is left?
Azumi, that's what is left. Here's a warning that goes for all past, present, and future posts: spoilers left, right, and center! If you have any intent of watching this movie anytime soon, don't read this. Or read it, and then drink yourself into a coma straight after. Your choice.
Azumi starts with Azumi (surprise), still a child at this point in the movie, being found by a bunch of homeless samurai whilst mourning next to her mother's dead body. They take her in and soon she has become a fully respected member of the hobo clan. They then train for about ten years, and as quoted from wikipedia:
Azumi is raised in the martial skills of samurai and shinobi sword fighting,
sashimi cooking, wasabi tolerating, ohayo saying, kamikaze flying, and the art
Upon reaching the end of their training, the ten warriors are lined up by their sensei and made to choose their bestest friend as a partner. Each are then made to fight each other - to the death! In a scene reminiscent of Battle Royale, the hobo clan is struck with confusion, but since sensei is such a friendly chap, they do him this favour. Way to get rid of half your cast.
The remaining five return to the great wise sensei, who is not to be questioned, and are assigned their mission. Azumi and her gang are to kill three evil warlords because of some promise somebody made, some time ago. Before they can do that, however, they need to watch as a village chock-full of women and children are mercilessly slaughtered by some completely unrelated people. A ninja appears out of nowhere, makes an inside joke with sensei, then disappears again.
The first warlord is easily dispatched during a fishing trip, but the second warlord is under the protection of a troupe of ninjas, led by a half-monkey, half-man ninja lord. The movie does not proceed to make clear in any way the reason why this man has a monkey face, but in a movie full of historical facts, who am I to question? I have seen monkeys perform tricks before.
Azumi and the gang proceed to kill who they think is the warlord, but turns out to be his double, and in revenge the man opens up a case of ninja and throws them all over the movie. When Azumi is done killing them all, only one man can turn the tide: a homosexual samurai. Immune to her charm, and also quite good with a sword, he kills one or two of the gang and retreats to a town full of pirates, leaving a trail of rose petals behind. Female samurai, ninjas, pirates; can this movie get any better?
Yes it can! Sensei and the remaining men go on ahead and invade the pirate town. They manage to kill a lot of ninjas and even more pirates, but eventually sensei is captured and his men killed by the gay samurai. Good for him that Azumi was trailing behind, picking flowers and dancing with the butterflies. She moves in and confronts the girly swordsman whilst behind her, one of her buddies rises from the dead and further explains the kamikaze concept as he tightens his bomb girdle and blows up the ninja monkey. Azumi commits hate crime and slays her gay assailant, rescues her sensei, kills the warlord, but sensei dies anyway. Movie ends!
Directed by Ryuhei Kitamura (who later did Godzilla part 28) in 2003, this is 142 minutes of people dying. Kill Bill doesn't even come close to the sheer volume of people killed in this movie, nor can I think of many other movies that do. For this reason alone, it's worth watching. Add the fact that Azumi is not an unattractive samurai and there's a ninja monkey teaming up with pirates, and it becomes much more than that. Arigato!
posted by Mab at 13:10, ,