The Great Magician (Daai mo seut si) (2011)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
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as Zhang Xian
as Chang Hsien
as Bully Lei
as Butler Liu
as Lei's wife
as Liu Wan yao
as Li Feng jen
as Chen Kuo
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Audience Reviews for The Great Magician (Daai mo seut si)
I was really surprised when instead of a serious story I found out that this is just an ordinary love comedy about a legendary Chinese magician fighting a warlord to rescue his fiancée during the period of the Republic of China after the fall of the Qing dynasty. If you take it as such you could enjoy it, if you expected something else you could be really disappointed!
Directed by Hong Kong director Er Dongsheng (尔冬升), the film has a cast led by Liang Chaowei (梁朝伟), Liu Qingyun (刘青云) and Zhou Xun (周迅). While the first two were well suited for comedy roles, Zhou Xun's poker face did nothing to contribute to the excitement of this film adapted from a novel by Zhang Haifan (张海帆). The novel devotes a large part to traditional Chinese magic tricks and the film is showing these tricks with the help of special effects. The leading actors have received training from real magician and all become magic enthusiasts.
Professionally acted and directed but without any extra effort to make it special. Just another flick where a guy goes for the childhood sweetheart for boring cold Saturday afternoon.
A clever dog is still a dog.
A revolution in China breaks out and takes down the Qing Dynasty. To prove their power over the dynasty, the revolutionaries kidnap a leader of the Qing Dynasty's daughter. The Qing Dynasty make plans to sneak back into power. Meanwhile, a strange magician arrives in the middle of these events and starts making appearances everywhere. He is angling to rescue the kidnapped girl due to a romantic history they have.
"I know these walls can't hold you. How long before you escape?"
Tung-Sing Yee, director of Full Throttle, Endless Love, Lost in Time, One Night in Mongkok, Drink-Drank-Drunk, and Triple Trap, delivers The Great Magician. The storyline for this is pretty intricate and the performers are fun and fascinating. There are some special effects that were a bit overdone but the acting and action were solid. The cast includes Tony Chiu Wai Leung, Xun Zhou, and Ching Wan Lau.
"Forget her. She's being rude as usual."
I grabbed this off Netflix because I am a fan of most Tony Chiu Wai Leung's films. This was entertaining and fun to watch unfold but I wouldn't say this is one of the favorite films of his (Infernal Affair, Hero, In the Mood for Love, etc). Overall, I would recommend seeing this but I wouldn't make this my first picture to view of Tony Chiu Wai Leung's.
light hearted, whimsical, well acted and thoroughly entertaining. This little gem coming out of china is great for a night time viewing on netflix in a sea of lesser choices on the streaming giant.
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