The Conmen in Vegas (1999)
Reviewed by: Trigger on 2001-11-20
I liked it. This one is more like a classic Wong Jing movie - it's silly and there are a few good movie parodies in it... they even parody The Ring and it made me laugh out loud. I would suggest seeing The Ring before watching this film... sorry if that gives away a surprise... Anyway - There are other great moments in this one too that make it a fun time. The story seemed to trail off alot like they were working without a script or something, but they managed to tie everything up in the end.

Movies make their own set of rules... rules for characters and rules for plot development and rules for location and gravity or whatever... Like in the Matrix, it created this world and did a pretty good job of sticking to the rules they created. It's not the real world that we live in, but we were able to follow along and know what was going on... had they changed the rules, it would've been too confusing and the movie wouldn't have been as good. In Hong Kong cinema - sometimes they will change the rules of characters or situations. There's nothing really wrong with that except that it makes these films difficult to believe or follow or what have you. With this film - being that it is a sequel, the first film set up some rules for the characters... they didn't really follow these rules however... they did to the extent that they aknowleged the rules existed only to change them so they could make a movie that was more fun to watch.

So right from the beginning they throw out all the storyline that had happened in the previous film so they could start fresh. Not a bad way to go considering the result, but fans of the first movie might be disappointed if they were expecting to see certain things resolved. It's not so much a continuation as it is a new film based on the same basic characters. This still has Andy Lau in it (many other faces return as well) and he is just as charming... I like him better now that I've watched these two films. It's still about being a conman, but this one doesn't have any of the serious undertones that the first one did.

This time Andy Lau (King) must travel to Las Vegas so he can capture a wanted criminal, retrieve some stolen money and pay off some bad guys who are holding his pal captive. The cons in this film are even more elaborate and probably a bit too much for their own good as the audience might have trouble believing they could possibly work in real life... but that's not what these films are about. This isn't really an updated God of Gamblers so much but it's in the same vein. I'd venture to say that it shares alot in common with Tricky Master.

There's plenty of Wong Jing slapstick and movie references in this film and the comedy manages to be quite funny. Near the end it gets too silly for its own good, but overall I'd have to give this one a thumbs up as well and score it a 7/10 cuz I liked it more than the first one. I started watching the third one and it looks like it's gonna be good too... Andy Lau isn't in it though... I'll let you know.
Reviewer Score: 7