The Chef The Actor The Scoundrel ...
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During Second Sino-Japanese War, China suffered from cholera outbreak because Japanese uses it as an biological weapon. Four Chinese agents captures a Japanese scientist and his bodyguard and interrogate them by Chinese opera in order to get the vaccine formula.
Set during the Sino-Japan war, a biological weapon (cholera) is used by Japan. But their plan falls apart when it mutates and everyone is at risk. A Japanese scientist is racing a cure back to HQ, when he is held up in the streets of a deserted city by The Scoundrel. The scientist and scoundrel end up in a deserted restaurant where they meet an unusual Cook & his wife, with the house Actor. Everyone wants the case the scientist has, and various plans to sell and divide the contents emerge. But not everyone is who they appear to be in is accidental meeting at the restaurant. And the prize in the case isn't what anyone was expecting. Things get complicated when loyalties shift, and local enterprising detectives show up. Eventually, we learn what is really going on, but a 'surprise' visit from the Japanese occupying forces just brings everything to a dangerous showdown. Will the hero(s) live through it with their prize, once Japanese forces surround the restaurant?
Different from the ordinary anti-Japanese war films, the surface has been funny, but each laugh is not only laugh and after make me pondering, the actors are indeed selected well, there is a strong drama conflict. Also I think the storyline progress very fast and jumped, it make me lost at some points. Some of the scenes are not what I expected, because some plots just like add to the story abruptly. The movie shows the strong of the Chinese united and many Chinese traditional traits. It also shows how poor China was back to 1940s. People could not have enough food and live within the bloodcurdling of war.
"The Chef, The Actor, The Scoundrel" is set during WWII. According to the film, the Japanese have deliberately unleashed a cholera epidemic on the Chinese people in Beijing. While I don't think this actually happened in real life, the Japanese did experiment with germ warfare during this time and did reportedly test these weapons on Chinese prisoners—so the idea behind the film is plausible. <br/><br/>When the film begins, two Japanese agents are traveling incognito through the streets of Beijing. A bandit attacks them and soon their wagon is torn to pieces—and the trio end up in a bizarre brothel. There, a group of greedy Chinese folks are concerned about what sort of treasure the two agents have brought with them in a canister. However, they are horrified to see that it has something to do with the epidemic— though whether or not it's the cholera or the cure is uncertain.<br/><br/>All this sounds very scary and serious, right? Well, it's not. While the basic idea is interesting, the story is just dreadful. Much of this is because it's all played for laughs—with fart jokes, scatological humor and, worst of all, the most atrocious overacting I have ever seen. Obviously the director had instructed them (particularly the woman) to make goofy faces and overact—and the effect is just awful. To make it worse, the film is VERY talky and downright dull. The film truly grated on my nerves and seeing goofy faces and googly-eyed expressions really wore thin—and I simply gave up on the movie after a while. Finishing the film was a chore and by then I'd lost all interest.<br/><br/>My advice is to skip this one. However, don't assume that this movie is at all typical of Chinese films. In fact, I have been really impressed by so many recent Chinese releases as they generally are very cinematic and professional and should be able to grab a significant chunk of the international box office. But I also feel that when many people outside China see "The Chef, The Actor, The Scoundrel" they night falsely assume all Chinese films are awful. This one is, clearly, but it's the exception to the rule, believe me! For a fun Chinese comedy, try "Shaolin Soccer"…it is terrific.
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