Days of Being Dumb
If you ever feel that you have seen one too many
violent triad films, this UFO production can act as a very silly antidote.
It is a broad but very funny parody of not so much the triads themselves
as the films about the triads. In a world where every young boy wants to
grow up to be like their favorite triad movie character such as Chow Yun
Fat in A Better Tomorrow or Ray Lui in To Be Number One, this film amusingly
skewers their rituals, their codes and their heroic image.
The humor is very gag driven sort of on the
level of Airplane but it is saved from getting tiresome due to the charming
performances from Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Jacky Cheung. They make a wonderful
comic team here and play off each other to hilarious effect at times. Often
it looks as if they are doing everything they can to stop themselves from
The two of them have wanted to be successful triad
members since they were small boys sharpening knives and running numbers
and Jackys father whacks him for wasting his time studying when he should
be training for a real future in the triads. Unfortunately having an aversion
to violence or blood and basically being kind hearted and somewhat cowardly
along with a large dose of incompetency makes advancement in the triads
So when they are sent out to collect loans
from debtors they instead end up giving them money or when ordered to
cut a body into 99 no more - no less pieces they instead sink the boat
by mistake because their eyes were closed.
In a large gang fight they slowly work their
way to the very back and ala Zu Warriors pretend to fight each other
and finally end up sitting at a café watching the fight. There
they read the paper and make observations such as why is so and so fighting
on his knees ah, because his legs have been cut off.
Their goal is to make it on the cover of the Triad
Weekly, but they keep being forced to go from gang to gang as their triad
leaders keep getting killed. In one scene they are the official car starters
to make sure there are no bombs attached and are happily high-fiving one
another for surviving when their boss gets blown up behind them.
Eventually they gain a reputation as the two
jinxes and no triad will let them join in fact everyone rapidly clears
out of a restaurant as soon as they enter. So they decide to become pimps
and import Anita Yuen from Singapore to be their first prostitute. Only
problem is that she is not a hooker and prefers women! but the
guys love her anyway.
Their final opportunity comes in the form of the
biggest Triad leader of them all Kwan who wants to show the world that
he is so powerful that nothing can hurt him not even the red and white
jinxes as they come to be known. Oh, big mistake.
I continuously found myself laughing at much of
this it is all so good-natured and just plain silly from antics such
as the tattoos they paint on one another to having to prick their fingers
in a triad oath of brotherhood to the closing credits as the camera pulls
back and the set is dismantled.
This was UFOs first film and it was directed
very smoothly by Peter Chan. Of course, Tony, Anita and Eric Tsang (who
has a supporting role) were to be used in many of their future films. This
was also Anitas film debut and though her part is secondary she immediately
displays her quirky charm and short haired style that was to make her a
big star within the next few years.
My rating for this film: 7.5