Private Life (1987)
Reviewed by: STSH on 2001-10-29
Summary: For fans only
The first hour is tepid soap opera, and the remainder is courtroom drama, with some hysterical outbursts but little real drama.

There appears to have been some clumsy editing at the start. I can give no other explanation for why Sam and George jump from being irritated at first sight in one scene to straight into bed making passionate love in the next. At least five minutes must have been cut there.

If you are not a fan of Alan or Joey (or, perhaps, Jenny Tseng), it's likely you'll find this one pretty dull. The remainder of ths review will concern stuff for fans of Alan and/or Joey.

I'll try to restrain my jealousy of Alan Tang. As producer and star, Alan was able to make a film which perhaps expresses the fantasies of many Asian male filmgoers (and me too !). Oh, to be calling the shots as the leading man getting involved with perhaps the most beautiful woman in Asia. Alan as producer is quite generous too, giving more screen time to Joey than himself.

Alan plays his normal square-jawed playboy role, but a bit less tough than usual. I was amazed that he allowed his character to be beaten up by thugs, and even moreso to be rescued by Joey clumsily wielding a shotgun. He gets Joey into bed and into a sex scene, though it's very discreet. Later on, in a fit of temper, Joey pulls off her knickers then lifts her skirt at him (of course, it's only Alan who sees it - damn !). Later still, Joey runs into the harbour after Alan wanders in, and we see the rare sight of Joey in a clingy wet dress. It apears she isn't wearing a bra, and this is probably the closest she ever came to a topless scene. Anyone who knows of an actual topless scene in any Joey movie, tell me about it !

Here's some ratings for Joey against her other movies.

Joey Glamour rating - near the high end. Not as high as in otherwise horrid Reincarnation Of The Golden Lotus (where she dominates nearly every scene, and has never looked better), nor as low as in her non-glamour roles, such as the weird and dull Red And The Black.

Joey On-Screen Time - high. Joey is onscreen about 2/3 of the time.

Joey Smoking - high ! I was astonished and saddened at how often Joey is pictured smoking.

Joey overall-movie quality - so-so. This is nowhere near her worst (e.g. appaling loads of rubbish such as Pretty Girl), nor her best (e.g. the Chinese Ghost Story trilogy or Eternal Combat).
Reviewer Score: 4