Millionaire Cop (HK 1992)

Rating: *
Review Date: 11/11/00
Cast: Aaron Kwok, Ng Man Tat, Maggie Cheung, Chingmy Yau, Xin Xin Xiong

A physically painful movie to watch, and I consider myself a true warrior for enduring its unforgivable stupidity. This film represents everything that's bad about Hong Kong comedy, with its endless parade of unfunny slapstick, cringing musical montages, and a complete lack of cohesion and direction. I wouldn't be surprised if Wong Jing's hand was involved, although it lacks the gloss of his other productions. The stupid plot revolves around two policemen who are partners. One is the young, suave, and handsome Ball (devilishly charming Aaron Kwok) and the other is the old, fat, and luckless Fish (veteran funny man Ng Man Tat). First of all, they get assigned to arrest a pervert who has been assaulting schoolgirls by lifting their skirts and touching their precious behinds. Naturally, they go undercover by dressing up as schoolgirls, and Ball eventually gets groped by the criminal. In the end it's Fish who captures him, but as luck would have it, while they're handcuffed together a band of thugs cuts off their shackled hands. Luckily, Fish makes it to the hospital to get his hand reattached, but wouldn't you know it - he picked up the wrong severed hand. The pervert's hand has a will of its own, so the entire rest of the film has poor Fish fighting with his new hand, which wants to reach out and touch all of the beautiful babes in the film.

After this pointless set piece, Ball and Fish get assigned to go undercover again. Ball gets assigned to impersonate a rich businessman's son, who is in danger of being kidnapped. Fish ends up going undercover as the company janitor, much to his displeasure. Conveniently, Ball's girlfriend Shun (beautiful Chingmy Yau) gets a job at the same building that Ball and Fish are working at, setting up the dreadful "don't let her find out what we're doing here" plot device. Meanwhile, Ball has managed to fool everyone into thinking he's Jessy Lee, including Shun and and Miss Chuck (immensely charming Maggie Cheung) who was Jessy's old girlfriend, adding yet another ridiculous layer to the already tired mistaken identity gag. And just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, we find out that whenever Miss Chuck sees a round object, she becomes a seductive inferno of insatiable desire - a perfect vehicle for Ball and Fish to exploit their mischievous adolescent desires. I thought that would be as bad as it gets, but no, Miss Chuck starts to fall for Ball's charm and they go out on the town in a positively dreadful musical number. I almost faltered and nearly turned it off at that point, but then Xin Xin Xiong came out of nowhere to split up the happy couple and battled Ball in an ice rink (with hockey gear, no less). He holds a grudge against Ball because he killed his brother earlier in the film. Then the kidnappers finally show up and try to kidnap Jessy, only to get brutally beaten by Ball. Next, they send a bomb to Mr. Lee, which ends up making him and the chief of police crazy. They get sent to a mental hospital where Mr. Lee believes he's and dog and the police chief dresses up as a female superhero called Black Rose. Ugh, make it stop...

Things finally come to a head when Shun and Miss Chuck both go to a party where both of Ball's identities are expected to be present, and he spends the evening changing clothes at superhuman speed and bouncing between the two women. He finally decides that he can't keep up the charade any longer, and confesses to Miss Chuck that he's an undercover cop and apologizes for lying to her. Meanwhile, the real Jessy Lee convinces Shun that Ball has been moving in on his ex-girlfriend (Miss Chuck) and she flies off into a rage. But that doesn't last too long because the kidnappers show up again and kidnap the bickering beauties. Then Xin Xin Xiong shows up again, kills the kidnappers, and takes the women for himself as bait to lure out Ball. The final showdown pits Ball against Xin Xin in an abandoned warehouse (how original), which ultimately ends up with Aaron Kwok reprising his Silver Fox role from the excellent "Savior Of The Soul" (1991). Everything finally turns out happily, with Ball and Shun back together and Miss Chuck's new boyfriend turns out to be Ball's twin brother! Huh?!? What the hell kind of ending is that?!? Is that the best you could possibly do?

What a horrible and degrading film in every sense (apart from the five minutes or so of fairly decent martial arts silliness). Purely a star vehicle for Aaron Kwok, and even though he's quite charming throughout, the sheer stupidity of the film is an embarrassment for everyone involved (but he does look cute in a skirt). Seeing such wonderful actresses as Maggie Cheung and Chingmy Yau participating in this kind of filth is truly depressing, but at least their beauty and charm helps to distract you from what's going on in the film. It's movies like this that can make you swear off Hong Kong films altogether.