Dir: Tso Kea
Scr: Lee Hang
Prod Co: Overseas
Cast: Cheung Ying, Mui Yee, Wong Man-lei, Lui Ming, Keung Chung-ping
1959 / B&W / D Beta / Cantonese / Chi & Eng Subtitles / 105 min
One of the nineteen screen adaptations of the classic Russian novel, The Twelve Chairs, this one and only Chinese edition is also among the funniest, surpassing even Mel Brooks’ celebrated version in 1970. The story recounts the frantic pursuit of an antique chair, among six identical ones, in which a priceless diamond bracelet is hidden, by a good-for-nothing dandy (Cheung Ying), his bitchy mistress (Mui Yee) and a flattering buddy (Keung Chung Ping). The zany and meandering adventure has the trio running around luxurious mansions, flea markets, as well as streets and corners in Macao. Veteran director Tso Kea, acclaimed for such sumptuous melodramas, handles the madcap narrative here with a gleeful hilarity hitherto unseen. While there’s an unusual amount of location filming in Macao, the key sets are shot in the studio. Chan Kei Yui’s elaborate set design circumspectly provides a touch of European aura that was regular in the ex-Portuguese colony.
(This film is part of the “Chan Kei Yui/Chan King Sum: Father & Son – Two Magnificent Set Designers” programme.)
||Cinema, Hong Kong Film Archive
* Post-screening talk with Jack Ng
# Post-screening talk with Ho Man-lung
The contents of the programme do not represent the views of the presenter.
The presenter reserves the right to change the programme should unavoidable circumstances make it necessary.