Jack Neo's films have two signature traits: Corny jokes, and in-your-face symbolism. In films like 'I Not Stupid', 'Homerun' or 'Just Follow Law', these traits serve as powerful punchlines of a strong core message, and they end up being memorable. This was not the case in 'Ah Long Pte Ltd', which was a 'light-hearted black comedy' that turned out to be incoherent, exhausting, and ultimately forgettable.
I did get a few good laughs out of the movie, but as a whole, the plot seemed exceedingly thin. I did spot a lot of strong plot points, which could have been great if the director had just elaborated on any one of them. But Jack seemed confused, shifting the focus from one point to another amidst long-drawn fight scenes and dance sequences.
The acting, however, was very enjoyable, and was what prevented the movie from being terrible. 'Bad boy' Mark Lee played a very convincing 'ah gua' and Singaporean Fann Wong spoke passable Cantonese. It was also a joy to see familiar Singaporean actors like Richard Low, and veteran Malaysian actress Lai Meng. On the other hand, the primitive and tacky SFX felt out of place.
Overall, the movie was entertaining, but as you watch the credits roll, you can't help but to feel unsatisfied.
Things to watch: Creative use of durians.
Things not to watch: The initial shock of Mark Lee as an effeminate dance school teacher. What has been seen, cannot be unseen.
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