_q (2012)
Double Trouble


Reviewed by: STSH
Date: 06/28/2012
Summary: Okay way to pass 90 mins in a cinema

Jaycee Chan bears a eerie resemblance to Jackie Chan. The plot, stunts and features of Double Trouble borrow heavily from any number of Jackie Chan films (and many other HK action flicks). Therefore it is hard not to draw comparisons. Of course, Jaycee cannot possibly measure up to Jackie's stuntwork.

Even without the comparison, Double Trouble is relentlessly average. It is played very broadly for laughs, of which there are a few, and fun, of which there is some. DT leans very heavily on shouting and mugging as a poor substitute humour. Nearly everyone yells lines for comic effect and it rarely works.

The two principals go through their paces, and perform some pretty good set-piece action sequences and several hair-raising flying leaps. The storyline is way overstretched, and the film could have been a half-hour shorter with no appreciable loss.

There is a tiresome and unnecessary romantic subplot, involving another clueless Beijing tourist. I can only conclude that the makers were slavishly following Jackie's formula and/or trying to hold the interest of the female audience. To say it lacks credibility is an understatement.

Nearly everyone mugs outrageously, but the worst offender is the beleaguered tour leader Idol, who stands to lose his deposit and therefore face ruin if he loses a tourist (a reference to Not One Less, perhaps ?). This guy is apparently a comedian and is hysterical for almost the whole movie.

So why bother watching ? The Taiwanese countryside is one of the stars. Gorgeous photography of lush tropical vistas. Anyone very familiar with differences between Beijing and Taiwanese idiom is certain to get more of the jokes, although many are spelled and played out with excessive clarity. For instance, Ocean tries to question locals about the villains, and they often complain about his accent or don't understand.

If, like myself, you are starving to watch new HK/Taiwanese movies in a cinema, then this one's an okay way to pass or waste 90 minutes. I wouldn't rent or buy the DVD though.

Reviewer Score: 4