Saturday, April 15, 2023

Magic Crystal


Magic Crystal (1986) Directed by Jing Wong.
Ever since I got my Skunkape TV, reviewing movies has been so much more Instamatic. Tonight, we’re venturing to Hong Kong (Jing Wong’s depraved and demented version) with our film in question Magic Crystal. It starts off with a workout montage then a brutal fight where one dude falls through a glass table. The main star Andy Lau and his stout sidekick played by director/writer Wong Jing has a bowl haircut and goggles that look like they came from the magic store in Pee wee’s Big Adventure (1985). The nerd bowl cut guy (Wong) almost gets pulverized for picking on a little kid by the boy’s gigantic Dad. 

they call me Chinese Pee Wee

This movie so far is uneven, it can’t tell which direction it wants to go in but it loves montages because there have been at least three I’ve failed to mention. I expect more shock out of Mr. Wong considering his resume. This is downright polite! But as you’ll see later he went the Spielberg route with mixed results. I could see Skunkape and I doing an old fashioned Point/ Counter Point on this film. 

yeah, well you're dubbed voice sounds like Bullwinkle!

Cynthia “Butch-cut” Rothrock shows up, she looks very cool but has a very strange dubbed voice. The chubby guy and his son played by Bin Bin dress alike and their hijinks wear thin very fast. 

There’s a brightly lit brawl in the park that’s almost quaint, I do appreciate the fight choreography which is top notch. I’m not sure however if this movie is based on an unreleased Intellivision game. Finally, we see the fake Chuck Norris (or is it Hans Gruber) from the poster art. I had hoped Chuck and Cynthia would hook up and make super karate babies but I was lied to! One character gets injected by faux Chuck. 

Our mutant offspring will make even worse movies!

28 mins in we get the promised “crystal”, it appears in a suitcase and Pin pin finds it . So now this movie wants to get all Spiel-berg-ian on us, what the fuck man! Andy meets Winnie played by Sharla Cheung Man. I wonder if I’m supposed to watch this movie backwards. I have no idea where the story begins or ends, very weird. Lots of cool choreographed fighting however! Skunkape told me that George Lucas even stole from this film and used elements of it for Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)! 

more Spielberg pandering

Andy and his buddy dive off a balcony face first and slam into the ground without a scratch! This movie has no logic and wants ME to be all Stacy Keach as Sgt. Stedenko and “just go with it maan and not fight it”! Logic don’t exist anymore! The “magic crystal” by the way is a green glowing gelatinous blob that talks to Pin Pin. It’s stupid and reminded me of the glowing blob from Luigi Cozzi’s Contamination (1980). 

I'm really an Italian blob invented by Luigi Cozzi

My fav scene so far is when the blob makes this peeper guy see Winnie rip her own face off V-series (1984-85) style. Pin Pin is the only likeable character I thought. I like the when he kicks that chubby bully from the beginning and the crystal grants him the power to do a “Liu Kang super kick”. 

The fake Chuck is starting to remind me of fake Hans Gruber and Andy even does a Die Hard (1988) rope trick down the side of a tall building. This film came out before so maybe it influenced the mega blockbuster hit. My least fav character played by Nat Chan Pak-Cheung gets hands for feet and vice versa from the magic crystal. He is awful and tries to rob a bank by waving his hands like a mental patient, they even put him in a straightjacket. This movie is starting to improve (or maybe it’s this strain of weed). One of the craziest fights occurs with a housewife played by Yu Miu-Lin who can wield a sword while balancing on your face. Her and “The Foreigner” battle it out in a living room setting. Cindy (Rothrock) fights “Hans Groobs” who now has giant Rob Halford arm spikes. The male stunt double in a wig is very noticeable in some moments. Then the kid Pin Pin gets abducted along with the jade blob. 

she kicks housework's sorry ass everytime

Andy literally jumps out of a coma and into a jeep after being shot in the throat. Ok, movie you are on drugs! He has to punch the clock and get back to chewing up scenes with more fighting. The kid and the blob are able to use mind powers to fly to Greece for free. The bad part is for some strange reason (which won’t be revealed here) the rock’s powers don’t affect faux Hans and some Goonies traps and pitfalls ensue like a video game or a better Indiana Jones sequel. Groobs brings out some ninja turtle weapons and slings them around like he’s dividing a pizza 40 ways. The Jade blob hops on a space ship and flies away like Poochie at the end of that Simpsons episode. No really, I can’t say I wasted my time but I was very confused by what this movie wanted to be. 2 1/2 jade green blobs out of 5.

Peel this

Ping Ping might be the next short round.

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