The book that Chang Ching (Chow Yun Fatt) gives to Mei (Chien-lien Wu) is "Shanghai Bund", a novel that based on the TV drama series that Chow Yun Fatt found fame in. Chow Yun Fatt played the character of Hui Man Keung which was mention by Mei in this movie. See more »
A beautiful and moving fairy tale, set in modern times. Chow Yun-Fat is cast as Chang Ching, a CIA operative sent undercover in Mainland China. Hidden in Shaolin Temple he meets Mei, a young woman with paranormal powers. Mei is the center of the grasping greed of a number of political entities and individual crooks, and it's up to Chang Ching to save this 'national treasure'... a treasure he comes to covet for his own, not for her powers but for her own sweet self.
This film is a gentle fantasy but like most fairy tales it has bitterness and violence entwined with the sweetness which makes it all the more poignant. Those who are expecting non-stop bloodletting for its own sake will be disappointed; for those who recognize Chow Yun-Fat at his best - in a touching romance with sprinklings of comedy and action - you will love this film for its warmth and dedication to the ideal that love conquers all.
Phillip Kwok has a marvelous role as the sarcastic taxi driver. It's good to see him in a role which allows for both his martial arts and stunt skills as well as gives him a chance to show he is also a fine actor. He was also the stunt director for the film.
Ng Sin-Lin (Wu Chien-Lien) as Mei shows again that great onscreen chemistry she has with Chow Yun-Fat; if you remember her from "God Of Gamblers Returns" you will see her take it to even greater effect in this film.
One of the most outstanding features of this film is the cinematography of Peter Pau. Beautiful photography and lighting give the screen a warm glow.
The use of "Reflections of Passion" by Yanni in this film was inspired; the references to the book on which the television show "The Bund" was based (the show which made Chow Yun-Fat a star in Asia in his youth) give some cute self-referential moments.
The subtitles on the Mei Ah DVD are a bit on the uneven side; it starts off with a pretty rough translation but evens out as you go along.
A wonderful movie. 10 out of 10.
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