Witchcraft Vs Curse (1991)
Reviewed by: STSH on 2002-02-11
Summary: Pretty good
There were a rash of cheap sorcery movies in HK from the mid-80s to the early 90s. Most of them were either Cat III or very close, and I've seen nearly all of them. They're mostly pretty awful and rather silly. I'd rate W vs C as the best of this bunch. The main reason is that it doesn't spend too much time on that stupid sorcery stuff and focusses instead on nudity and sex. On the occasions where sorcery intrudes on what passes for a plot, it's either enjoyably bad or somewhat amusing.

A scintillating quote : "Don't lose temple".

There's acres of nudity here, which is just the way a CatIII film should be. No less than nine young women bare absolutely all, plus one who take it all off but is filmed only from the back, plus five more who dance around in completely transparent tops.

The vast bulk of the nudity is provided by Chung Yim Hung. Immediately after the opening credits, the camera is hurled into a shower for closeups of her luxurious bush and decent sized breasts. Despite her being billed third, this lovely actress has more screen time than any other, and spends at least half of that time full frontally nude, including a couple of scenes where she wears a see-through piece of fine gauze.

I don't know for sure, but this lady doesn't look Chinese. This movie is partly set in Thailand, as one of the only two other films she has made which I can find, the awful Evil Black Magic, in which she plays a similar part. I think she is probably Thai or perhaps Lao. Either way, she's no great actress, but am I worried about minor details like that ?

A woman I have tentatively identified as Chan Ling Chi plays Chi Chuen, who is almost certainly Thai. She has a single full-frontal scene which is one of my favourites in this film. She is sexually attacked by the Adultery Ghost, who of course rips off her clothes and flips her around for sex in several positions. What I like about this scene is the oddball editing. The scene cuts back and forth between Chi by herself, doing the movements, and her with the ghost. It's fun to watch.

Two more Thai women, uncredited, have their own full frontal sex scenes. And, near the end, my very favourite scene, where no less than five other Thai women are given the task of thawing out the spellbound Yuk Lung. This must have been Ng Gong's toughest scene. He is required to lie still and show no reaction while five lovely young naked women crawl all over him. He does quite well, too. His glasses don't even fog up. And the only real sorcery occurs in this scene. The five girls are somewhat scantily dressed at the start, but are fully clothed. They spend about five minutes pawing and licking him, and then they stand up and, voila, their knickers have vanished. Bit of a problem with continuity perhaps but, again, no complaints. Sure makes me wanna visit Thailand again .........

The film has disappointments. Tsang Siu Yin, one of the most beautiful women in HK, has only made a few movies, mostly Cat IIIs, but I can recall only one where she shows it all - a terrific small part at the start and end of the fantastic Erotic Ghost Story II. Siu Yin is the one gets discreetly nude, in a sex scene with Ng Gong. I'm actually more annoyed when she does this than when she remains fully clothed. Too much tease. Grrrrrr.

The other five Thai girls are really something. I think they must have combed the entire country for them, because women with such big busts are even less common in Thailand than in HK. Plenty of screen time is spent on those busts, in an entertaining scene where these dancers entertain the five male ghosts sent by the HK sorcerer.

Male nudity isn't much of an issue in HK film, and this is not exception. Ng Gong gets nude in several scenes but, of course, is never shown fron the front. That's one of the funny things about HK cinema. More than any other cinema, HK is dominated by the male gaze, and is probably more obsessed with stuff about penises than any other. (Where else would you get stuff like Talk To Me Dicky ?).

I am a mad credits reader, and do get frustrated with the billing in these films. Only nine actors are credited, so I know that most of these people are uncredited. Therefore, the blonde gwailo who played Nancy is doomed to remain unknown. More annoying, one of my very favourite old actors, Kwan Hoi San, only gets a few seconds at the start and the end. Hoi San has appeared in nearly all these sorcery films.

For the record, Michiko doesn't take anything off. She spends most of her small time on screen sitting down, waving her arms and having moderate success in practicing The Evil Laugh. Veteran fu support actor Yeung Chak Lam wears only one expression - affronted - during the whole film, even when he has Hung all to himself, protected only by that thin piece of gauze which he had the nerve to describe as a gown.

Most Cat IIIs have short running times and, often, that's a good thing. At just 88 mins, I felt that W vs C was too short. During that scene with Ng Gong and the five girls, I felt the film had really hit stride and could have gone for at least another 20 minutes. That must be some sort of recommendation.

In summary, this is a nudie exploitation film par excellence. Worth watching, perhaps even more than once.
Reviewer Score: 8