| Ghost Lantern (1993)
Director: Lau Wai Keung
Leung, Chingmy Yau
This film begins with a prologue that takes place
in 1963. In it a vicious triad head (Roy Cheung) - who has some
supernatural abilities - is burying someone in a location that will
bring the dead man 10 lives of bad luck. Roy then goes to the dead man's
girlfriend (also dead)– Chingmy–and slices off her skin–makes a lantern
with it–and imprisons her soul within.
Jump ahead to 1993 and Tony Leung is a low-end
triad member–he sells meat skewers on the street and is beaten up by
punk kids and hassled by a cop–Tommy Wong. As he explains to a friend,
his entire life has been a series of bad luck and misfortune–nothing
ever goes right for him. Leung gives a wonderful and at times very
comical portrayal of this down on his luck triad slacker–with little
ambition and little courage–but basically a good heart.
The triad he belongs to goes up against another
one that is run by the mysterious Mr Hung–just recently returned from
Taiwan. When Hung sees Tony he immediately tells him with a laugh– "you
have nine more lives of bad luck ahead of you" and Tony gets horrific
flashes of his being murdered in a previous life. He ends up in the
hospital where a man tells him to seek the help of Granny Four to
understand what is happening to him. He finds out later that this man
was already dead.
Granny Four is a spiritualist and is able to show
him his past life and the story of his love for Chingmy and their tragic
ending. Chingmy also comes to him (in spirit form) and tells him that
she has been waiting for him for thirty years and that he must free her
soul from the lantern.
Leung also realizes that in his past life he was
this incredibly suave, debonair and courageous fellow (similar to
Leung's character in The Lover) and he slowly starts taking on the
character of his former life. It is just a winning performance from
Leung as he makes both his lives very real and sympathetic. Along with
Tommy Wong (who owed him a favor in his previous life!) Leung fights to
save Chingmy's soul and for the salvation of his future lives.
List Price: US $19.95
Cantonese / Mandarin
English / Traditional Chinese
/ Simplified Chinese
(Can be played on any DVD player in the
"May be Inappropriate For Children" (Broad
rating may be roughly equal to an MPPA rating of
"PG-13" to "R". In the late 1980s
this rating splintered in two ratings: IIA and IIB) Films
rated Category II may contain mild to strong violence,
nudity that is usually not sexually oriented, explicit
language and adult situations.