Dragon Reloaded (2005)
Reviewed by: ewaffle on 2010-04-29
Summary: Funny and fast paced
“Dragon Reloaded” starts with excellent opening credits that show key scenes from first movie in animated boxes during the credit crawl.

The first scene is flashback to “Dragon Loaded” with cheesy police produced public service television show hosted by Officer Dragon. Woman has fire ants dropped on her and is sold a cream to make her nipples the color of strawberries by a ruthless street con artist. To seal the deal Ronald Cheng skates by as Rollergirl from the movie “Boogie Nights”. He is no Heather Graham.

Trainer Tang from the first movie the three cops head for a spa on a small island off the coast. It is run by a bunch of rustics that could be the Chinese version of the backwoodsmen from “Deliverance” although not as winning or attractive. A tomb robber has been busy defiling the graves of the village’s ancestors and our heroes decide to capture the robber. Unfortunately they stumble into the middle of an SDU operation, mistaking the undercover cops for ninjas bandits and ruin the ambush they had set up.

So they are now stuck on this middle of nowhere island and the three comrades fail miserably in gaining the confidence of the villagers. The mayor is a tough old bird who won’t allow the local bully Tiger (Ken Lo with nutty pasted on sideburns) to pressure him into selling the ancestral shrine. They don’t impress him when they try to keep Tiger from harassing a crippled push cart peddler and his attractive daughter since the result is a painful and self inflicted injury to Dragon and they really get on the mayor’s bad side when they accidentally knock over a mountainside shrine while playing with an old artillery piece. This releases a ghost—not a very frightening creature, more annoying than anything else since the mayor has to find a place to stow the ghost/vampire until he can be reburied.

Dragon volunteers to keep the vampire—Grandpa who had been a village elder--at the police station and train him like Lam Ching-Wing did in the “Vampire” movies. Even though Dragon dresses like a Taoist priest he isn’t successful until the guys decide to train using dog handling tactics, which work well enough that Grandpa is able to fetch a slipper on command.

It turns out that he is not the ghost of Grandpa but a looter who was knocked out when the tomb was blown up and who is impersonating a ghost in an attempt to escape. This is the first of several set pieces, almost self-contained skits that fit the continuity of the movie but could also stand alone as gags. Captain Tang shows up with a story of having killed a mad dog. The dog is the guide and companion for Keung’s Mom who arrives at the police station to report the beast missing while Tang is in the kitchen preparing dog stew. Hei get stuck with impersonating the dog—he is terrible at it and very funny.

Reinforcements arrive—Rock and his team, all in full battle dress and ready for trouble. They stake out the village celebration, lying wait for Keung. Two of them are disguised as a loving gay couple and one as an incompetent fish ball seller. Dragon, Gold and Hei are in full Peking Opera drag also waiting for Keung.

A tearful mother and son reunion follows, Keung is allowed to escape, true love is found temporarily and the three friends return to the city, stopping at the airport to pick up three armed policewomen.

“Dragon Reloaded” and its predecessor are funny, fast-paced and extremely silly. As long as one can overlook a few things that might shock a Western viewer (like this one) such as Ronald Cheung hitting Liu Fan in the face with his closed fist they are well worth watching.
Reviewer Score: 7