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失業皇帝 (1999)
Afraid of Nothing, the Jobless King


Reviewed by: mpongpun
Date: 09/13/2003

This flick seems to be a decent comedy that ridicules Hong Kong’s unemployment quandary. Gallen Law plays a high ranking manager named Ha Kong for a company that has been terminated from his position by his deceased boss’ (Spencer Lam) son, Ser (David Lee). Down and out, without luck, and without cash, Ha Kong unexpectedly finds himself as part of a “Beggar” gang, led by Brother Jing (Eric Kot). These beggars know how to make money and have devised many techniques to make some easy money. Eventually, Ha Kong itches to return to the real world, and does so by taking a thankless job at pharmaceutical company that is on the verge of bankrupting. Ha Kong falls for his Boss’ (Fung So Bo) daughter, Nan (Gigi Leung), and then later tries to help out the company by trying to win for them a huge contract from a foreign firm that will surely help them out of financial hell. Unfortunately for Ha Kong, his nemesis, Ser, you know, the guy who fired him, just so happens to be Nan’s fiancé. Ser tries to make things hard for Ha Kong by exposing him as a liar to Nan about his newfound “beggardness” and more harshly, “stealing” his way to winning the foreign pharmaceutical company’s sponsorship as it looked like the company might be leaning towards Ha Kong. In the end, Ha Kong finds a way to right all the wrongs and turn the table on Master Ser. For somebody who doesn’t really do “movies”, Gallen Law was pretty likable and did a fine job as the lead. Eric Kot, as usual was grating, and Sam Lee as Brother Iron offered decent support. Gigi Leung, was her mundane self, but what would you like her to do? Fung So Bo, one of the little Princess’ of 1960’s Hong Kong cinema was a pleasant surprise as the Mother of Gigi Leung’s character.


Reviewed by: tdockweiler
Date: 02/10/2002

I would definitely suggest avoiding this movie, that is unless you have nothing better to watch. To put it short this movie is a comedy, yet isn't funny, is filled with lame, unlikable and annoying characters and to me was just a waste of time to watch. I admit to liking most every other Joe Ma film I've viewed, but this one is definitely my least favorite.

4.0/10

Reviewer Score: 4

Reviewed by: ryan
Date: 11/01/1999
Summary: Afraid of Nothing, The Jobless King (1999)

Unemployment seems to be one of the critical problem in Hong Kong nowadays. In the past few months, three directors, Alfred CHEUNG Kin-ting, Joe MA Wai-ho and Jacob CHEUNG Tze-leung has taken such topic in their new movies. In September, we have seen Alfred CHEUNG's 'The Extra' (1998). Now it is the time to see Joe MA's version in 'Afraid of Nothing, the Jobless King' (1999).

The main plot of the story is the hard time of hero from top to the bottom and he strikes back. Ha Kong (Gallen LAW Kar-leung) is a young rich guy as a manager. He is trapped by Master Ser, the son of the boss, after the death of the boss. He is made being disappeared and being fired. He is turned as a beggar and accidently ganged with Brother Jing (Eric KOT). With times go on and he restarted his days by seeking jobs with the target of Gigi LEUNG......

'Jobless King' is a comedy and it seems that Joe MA has put efforts to pack laughters by putting lots of issues like Snoopy, Storm Riders, TV Shows, or even Titanic. Some of them is really out of the expectations like Snoopy and the TV Show. For jokes related to unemployment, it seems that they can put more efforts to make it fun like the scene in the job hunting agency. In short, laughters are a bit above standard.

In terms of the plot, since the crew put more efforts in laughters, the plot seems to be a bit weak. Ha Kong, the main character in the movie, is a term used in PRC describing re-deployment of workers from urban back to home for setting up new life. The main objective of the movie is for the process from manager to beggers and how Ha deal with his new life. In this issue, Joe Ma is okay in doing the first part. For the second part, he has tried his best by putting scenes of competitions with other street guys. I think this can be more impressive if they put more context in interaction with competitors.

The placing of Gigi LEUNG in the movie is typical. Gigi seems to be a role encourging Ha Kong as well as the target for Ha. Due to lack of elaboration at the beginning, it is a bit pale to audience when they are fall in love. I think this approach is the usual method and now it's okay. However, I consider as they are making a comedy, the role for Gigi can be a bit craizer which will have more chemical effects.

In terms of performers, it seems that Eric plays the main role and is the most outstanding performer in the movie. For Gallen LAW, I consider he is still green in film industry and he doesn't have much chance to show his acting in the movie actually. For Gigi LEUNG, she is okay. The only concern is that she has been in such roles for several times like 'The True Mob Story'. I hope she won't be stereotyped.

On the whole, I consider the movie can basically achieve the objective. Laughters are above average in general while the plot is okay. Though it seems a bit typical, the movie is still okay.