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Durring the Tang Dynasty, a kung-fu tournament was held once every 18 years with the winner declared the leader of the land until the next competition. But a tournament with such high stakes brings out the best, and worst, in the various competitors and leaders. Written by
Towne 3, San Jose, Ca
HANDSOME SIBLINGS (1992) is a parody of the `flying fu' subgenre of Hong Kong kung fu films of the 1990s. It's all about the ongoing battle for control of the martial arts world-a common theme in these films--yet it has few fights and focuses more on the romantic and comedic aspects of the story, which details the relationship between the two leads, who've been raised by opposing clans to contend for control of the martial world, but who instead fall in love. The leads are played by HK pop star/matinee idol Andy Lau and HK diva Brigitte Lin. The supporting cast of Hong Kong stalwarts includes the always memorable Francis Ng (as the villain), the ever-beautiful Cheung Man (as Andy Lau's estranged mother, who raises Brigitte) and the dependable character players Richard Ng, Shing Fui-On, Fung Hak On, and Ng Man Tat.
It's all very amusing, with some nice effects and pretty cinematography, but don't go into it expecting a lot of action or a lot of Brigitte Lin, who flies around a bit but has far less to do than Andy. See this only after you've seen such other high-flying Lin masterworks as SWORDSMAN II, THE EAST IS RED, DRAGON INN and THE DRAGON CHRONICLES (which also co-stars Cheung Man), or the similarly themed Michelle Yeoh vehicle, BUTTERFLY AND SWORD.
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