Bodyguards And Assassins 十月圍城 (2009) – HK Movie

February 16, 2010 jeansdream
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Bodyguards And Assassins (十月圍城) was released in Dec 2009.  Producer is Peter Chan (陳可辛), Director is Teddy Chen (陳德森).   Casts (all star!) included Tony Leung Ka Fai as Chen Shao Bai 陳少白, Wang Xue Qi as Li Yu Tang 李玉堂, Donnie Yen as Shen Chong Yang 沈重陽, Wang Po Chieh (a 19-year old from Taiwan) as Li Chong Guang 李重光, Nicholas Tse as Ah Si 阿四, Li Yu Chun (李宇春) as Fang Hong 方紅, Simon Yan as Fang Tian 方天, Hu Jun as Yan Xiao Guo 閻孝國, Mengke Bateer as Wang Fu Ming (Munk) 王復明, Eric Tsang as Smith 史密夫, Leon Lai as Liu Yu Bai (Beggar) 劉郁白, Fan Bing Bing as Li yu Tang’s Mistress.

The story was set on the one of the most significant milestones of China in the beginning of the 20th century.  The Father of the Nation, Sun Wen (孫文/ 孫中山/ 孫逸仙), a fugitive then, was mobilizing Chinese inside and outside of China to overthrow the corrupted Qing Dynasty – he wanted to liberate the Chinese people and ensure people had work and they were fed.  He believed that no one should be born a master nor a slave and people should have the freedom to choose their ruler.   A strategic advocate of democracy to revive China when she was in a turmoil and was invaded by eight-countries, Sun was planning a “secret” meeting with leaders from 13 provinces (in China) in Hong Kong, a British colony then.   The news of the meeting was leaked and Sun was in a great danger of being the next political assassination’s victim.  Sun’s friend and coordinator at HK, Chen Shao Bai, involved his friend and his newspaper’s sponsor, Li Yu Tang to protect Sun during his visit.

This movie is not about Sun.  It’s about Sun’s bodyguards and those assassins sent to eliminate Sun.  It’s a tribute to those who sacrificed for the cause of a better home, a better society, a better country.  It’s nice to see that even the main archenemy, the head of the assassin, Yan Xiao Guo, got depths in his character.

I had no idea what this movie was about before my hubby rented it (Blu-Ray!).  I even had no idea who was in the movie.  And I am not sure if it’s because I had no expectation at all or the movie was actually a great one that the 2-hours+ just went by without knowing – it was a sincere and thoughtful movie.

This movie has already won Film of Merit and Best Actor (Wang Xue Qi) in the 16th HK FIlm Critics Society Awards.  It has been nominated in 19 categories (i.e. almost all categories, except in Best Actress in a Lead Role, New Director and Asian Film) in the 29th HK Film Awards – results will reveal on April 18th, 2010.    To me, this is a loud voice of how well-balanced this movie is.

Stunning set –  a well-researched, detailed Queen Street Central and its surrounding streets in 1906 revamped.  Leung Ka Fai’s bi-focal glasses.  Harsh (at times bloody) and powerful fight scenes.  All the stars deliver.  Wang Xue Qi is totally convincing.  I am pleased with Nicholas Tse (shake-off that handsome face and there I see your more vivid acting skills), and impressed by Li Yu Chun (can’t believe she’s new in filming – she’s so natural).  And boy, Leon was cool (love that chubby face and fluffy hair (but the hair’s too clean, so is his face!)) and his lover (M.R.) was so pretty!  Last but not least, I want to tell Teddy that your past 10 years (for preparation and making of this film) was not spent in vain.  Well done, Teddy!  All the best and please make more good movies.

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Entry Filed under: Movie Ping 影評

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