No Risk, No Gain (Casino
Raiders - The Sequel)
Hmmm? First, from what I have figured out, this
film is really in no sense a sequel to Casino Raiders even if it does have
the two main actors back and even if their characters are similar in makeup.
Since Andy Lau and Alan Tam don’t know each other when the film begins,
I thought perhaps it was a prequel - but that doesn’t really fit
the facts either. There is also another film simply called Casino Raiders
II with Lau and Wu Chien-lien, but I was informed that this film is also
not really a sequel. It’s a bit confusing, but HK and Wong Jing often do
their best to capitalize on the popularity of other films (and Casino Raiders
had sat in the theaters for nearly three months) and sequels or sequels
in name only is a fairly common practice.
Though the film shares the name and the actors
from Casino Raiders, it certainly doesn’t share the mood of that film.
This film makes no attempt to create melodrama or tension – it does though
make an effort to have you laugh and it succeeds to some degree. I never
thought the day would come when I would admit that Andy Lau teamed up with
the usually dreaded Natalis Chan was funny – but these two riff off one
another quite effectively and I found myself fairly amused by their slap
In fact, Andy is the best thing about this film
just as he was in Casino Raiders. I certainly never expected to say that
about a film that has Michelle Reis in it! I better control myself here
– the next thing I know I’ll be buying Andy's Idol cards and holding candles
at his concerts. Well – no – probably not – but he is actually very lively
and engaging in this film. It’s a piffle of a film – and never takes itself
too seriously – and Andy fits in fine. It's no wonder one of the women
says to Andy "You are so cool and so full of mandom".
Alan Tam is considered the King of Asian gamblers
and is working at a US casino when he is forced by a Taiwanese gambler
- Cheung Shan Ho - (he places three bombs in the casino) to come to Macau
for a big gambling match to see who is really the top gambler in Asia.
Tam though makes a stopover in Hong Kong where he is charmed by the lovely
May Lo (Jackie Cheung’s real life wife) and then is easily scammed out
of his suitcase by Andy and Natalis. When they open it, they discover a
suitcase full of hundred dollar bills and a pass to the big match. So what
do they do – decide of course to impersonate Tam and take his place at
the gambling table.
Simple enough – except the host of the match (Tien
Feng) and his adopted son (Anthony Wong) have a plot underway to take over
their triad by killing Tam and framing Cheung for the murder. Then the
Mafia that Tam works for will revenge him. Before all that happens
though Natalis finds himself well attended to by Christine Ng and Andy
falls for the charms of Cheung’s daughter – Michelle Reis. Then Tam shows
up but decides to keep the charade going – because it may be safer for
him if everyone thinks that the idiot Natalis is really him. Anthony Wong
as the totally evil son is perfectly despicable and delightful as he plots
their demise. Shing Fui On makes an appearance as well as the hired killer
from Hong Kong.
The film moves by quickly – has the requisite
big gambling scene – has some silly laughs, a little romance and has one
big shootout. Hey, what more do you want in ninety minutes?
My rating for this film: 7.0
Distributed by Mei Ah
The transfer is fine for the most part - nothing
special - but I thought quite acceptable.
The subtitles are in Chinese and English and
are burnt into the print, but are fairly easy to read most of the time.
The film is Letterboxed
There is no menu - and thus no extras of any