Based on the iconic figure of Di Renjie, a legendary minister of state in the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) who was known for his ability to solve the most complicated cases, Tsui Hark’s Detective Dee is a uniquely appealing counterpart to his modern western equivalent, Sherlock Holmes.
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Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom FlameRegisserad avTsui Hark
Hark's dedication to (intentionally) bad CGI is kind of radical in a deconstructive sense, but also a problem, denying the brilliant martial arts choreography of Sammo Hung some of its natural, visceral energy. Nonetheless, it's a remarkable film, employing a genuinely interesting murder mystery narrative, with sidelines into political conspiracy & magical realism, with the bold & expressive stylisation of the Wuxia.
An extremely fun and entertaining movie. I like my chinese action movies exactly like this: over the top. The scene where the main character has to fight off possessed deer makes the whole movie worth it. That being said it is truly beautifully shot with spectacular production design. Pure entertainment.
Tsui Hark is back, let the word be spread. Remember Robert Hans van Gulik's Judge Ti wonderful books ? DETECTIVE DEE is, if I'm not mistaken, the first full-length movie devoted to this character. If you like action movies, this one is clearly for you. Also note that the film was acclaimed by Positif as well as by Les Cahiers du Cinéma !! Masterpiece.
Not at all like the great series of mystery novels by Robert van Gulik, but rather much like a Chinese version of the Guy Ritchie/Robert Downey, Jr. Sherlock Holmes movies, in which a great detective character is placed in the middle of some gigantic souped-up plot. Tsui is in great form, with fabulous vistas and flabbergasting plot points (e.g. the statue, spontaneous human combustion, and the deer).
The mere existence of concentrated monarchic power opens the doors for mutual enmity that wills the collapse of peace. A ripping mystery yarn that transcends the whodunit genre with a healthy dose of straight-up magic and fight scenes choreographed by Sammo Hung that act as the crux of the dramatic momentum as opposed to divergent interludes. Dee's cyclical arc as a penitent class traitor is really remarkable.
Kind of ridiculous only in that kung-fu epic sort of way that's both serious and outrageous. The fight sequences are great but the story seemed to suffer from being a bit muddled. I guess without the historical context applied to the film, the characters played a little flat, even Detective Dee himself. Still fun though some awful CGI does hurt the film. It just looks bad and unconvincing.
The mystery case was so lazy and nonsensical, it made the six-armed musician and the flying killer robots were the most logical things in this. WHY ANDY LAU WHY?? In the end, this movie could only be explained with the greatest word in Indonesian vocabulary: LEBAY.