Anita Mui

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Media Review by most recent date sequence. 傳媒影評依照日期排列

Dance of a Dream
 Cantonese

Starring Andy Lau, Sandra Ng, Anita Mui
Director Andy Lau and Andrew Lau
Category IIB

Review by Paul Fonoroff (Email: hongkongmovies@hotmail.com)

Andy Lau's holiday release is a testament to the 40-year-old's youthful tenacity. As the tango instructor in Dance of a Dream, he displays his six-pack abs within the first few minutes, and attacks the dance routines with a vigour that proves he is in no mood to become a relic of late 20th-century teen fantasies.

One wishes he put as much energy into script revisions. Co-directed by Lau and Andrew Lau, the dream lacks muscle. That Felix Chow Man-keung's scenario is thin is beside the point. After all, some of the greatest musical comedies are hardly noted for their literary excellence. But even the weakest Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly vehicle had the saving grace of some of the most fantastic dancing ever seen on screen. Dance of a Dream doesn't even come close, and there are few other compensations, unless one is starry eyed for Lau and fellow idols Anita Mui and Edison Chan, all of whom are pleasant here but far from spectacular.

The brassiest role belongs to Sandra Ng as Kam, a love-struck waitress who spends her savings on dance lessons with the roguish Wah (Lau). The role is fine as a showcase for Ng's loudmouth buffoonery, but too one-note to qualify as a tour de force. Kam forms a lopsided triangle with Tina (Mui), an entrepreneur and pupil of Wah. Chan ''guest stars'' as Mui's younger brother, a role so incongruous that even one of the characters remarks how he doubts the two share the same parents. The picture tries to have it both ways, portraying Lau as an unconscionable rascal who will say and do anything to further his ambitions, and a nice guy who does the right thing by the two women he deceives for most of the film's 93 minutes. It's unconvincing, as is the tacked-on ''Merry Christmas'' in which Chan strides on to bring some contrived holiday cheer.

But it is the dancing that proves most disappointing. A potentially joyous number has the cast doing the cha-cha at a barbecue party and is reminiscent of 1960s Cantonese musicals. Unfortunately, the scene is sloppily done, the stars' miming to the pre-recorded singing track so out-of-sync that it looks like a TV variety show. The tangos also fail to burn up the screen. Lau traipses with Mui, Ng and the ''Latin dance queen of China'' Shirley Huang, but these sequences are filmed in typical MTV style with multiple angle switches and shots that rarely last longer than three seconds. The technique may flaunt the editor's skill, but robs the viewer of any sense of the dance and fleeces the film of its dream.

     

《愛君如夢》跳跳舞

【 明 報 專 訊 】 《 愛 君 如 夢 》 的 片 名 , 簡 直 為 吳 君 如 度 身 定 造 , 絕 少 片 名 會 這 樣 湊 合 , 看 得 出 吳 君 如 演 此 片 是 很 興 奮 投 入 的 。 當 然 , 這 部 舞 蹈 愛 情 片 的 主 體 在 於 「 愛 君 」 , 「 君 」 是 劉 德 華 , 他 在 台 前 幕 後 最 落 力 , 顯 然 要 證 明 自 己 不 單 能 演 能 唱 , 還 有 資 格 做 舞 星 。

作 為 並 非 正 規 舞 蹈 出 身 的 表 演 者 , 劉 德 華 在 《 愛 君 如 夢 》 演 社 交 舞 導 師 , 大 跳 探 戈 , 還 跳 出 凌 空 一 字 馬 , 已 算 不 錯 。 事 實 上 , 今 次 他 的 舞 蹈 感 , 拍 得 好 過 郭 富 城 在 今 年 暑 期 片 《 芭 啦 芭 啦 櫻 之 花 》 ( 馬 楚 成 導 演 ) 演 的 舞 蹈 班 導 師 。 郭 富 城 過 去 演 武 打 片 的 姿 式 更 好 看 , 較 能 發 揮 「 化 武 為 舞 」 的 吸 引 力 。

《 愛 君 如 夢 》 本 身 , 亦 稍 勝 於 過 度 扮 青 春 的 《 芭 》 片 。 九 十 年 代 社 交 舞 在 世 界 各 地 復 興 , 吸 引 到 很 多 成 年 人 躍 躍 欲 舞 , 「 波 場 」 衣 香 鬢 影 , 級 數 並 非 短 暫 的 「 芭 啦 芭 啦 」 熱 潮 所 及 。 但 作 為 社 交 舞 愛 情 片 , 《 愛 君 如 夢 》 主 要 是 學 澳 洲 片 《 舞 出 愛 火 花 》 和 日 本 片 《 談 談 情 . 跳 跳 舞 》 , 卻 顯 著 地 比 不 上 。

片 中 吳 君 如 飾 演 餐 廳 女 侍 應 , 偶 然 被 「 舞 男 」 劉 德 華 一 舞 傾 情 , 於 是 傾 囊 報 名 投 入 他 開 設 的 舞 蹈 班 , 還 兼 職 雜 工 , 完 全 是 灰 姑 娘 模 樣 。 與 此 同 時 , 商 界 女 強 人 梅 艷 芳 亦 被 劉 德 華 迷 倒 , 成 為 他 最 巴 結 討 好 的 學 生 。 於 是 一 個 上 流 冷 傲 、 一 個 草 根 熱 情 , 都 愛 君 如 夢 , 就 與 劉 德 華 搞 出 三 角 矛 盾 。

此 片 由 周 文 強 編 劇 , 《 電 影 雙 周 刊 》 列 出 導 演 是 劉 偉 強 和 劉 德 華 , 不 管 實 際 導 演 是 誰 , 看 來 最 落 力 是 劉 德 華 , 大 演 舞 姿 。 他 顯 然 花 了 很 大 精 力 練 舞 , 儘 管 不 能 要 求 他 與 專 業 拉 丁 舞 家 相 比 , 但 在 港 產 商 業 片 中 也 算 跳 得 似 模 似 樣 。 兩 位 女 主 角 方 面 , 梅 艷 芳 勝 在 身 形 高 瘦 , 歌 舞 經 驗 豐 富 , 與 劉 德 華 合 舞 就 頗 為 合 襯 。 反 而 吳 君 如 在 片 中 大 多 數 時 間 演 笨 手 笨 腳 的 新 生 , 直 至 最 後 才 正 式 和 劉 德 華 跳 了 一 次 舞 , 舞 姿 表 現 機 會 很 少 , 不 像 《 舞 出 愛 火 花 》 的 掃 地 灰 姑 娘 , 真 正 練 成 舞 蹈 比 賽 高 手 。

單 求 看 看 明 星 跳 跳 舞 的 話 , 那 就 不 必 苛 求 了 。 此 片 的 缺 點 其 實 是 劇 情 俗 套 , 三 角 戀 情 找 戲 來 做 , 欠 缺 火 花 , 故 意 炮 製 金 錢 與 真 愛 的 矛 盾 , 結 局 卻 不 清 楚 劉 德 華 到 底 選 擇 什 麼 。 我 最 失 望 是 那 間 舞 蹈 學 校 其 他 學 生 , 來 來 去 去 只 是 幾 個 小 丑 , 卻 不 好 笑 , 連 社 區 街 坊 舞 蹈 班 的 實 感 也 沒 有 。

作 為 聖 誕 重 頭 戲 , 又 請 正 式 舞 師 協 力 , 為 何 片 中 其 他 學 生 那 麼 少 , 又 失 真 呢 ﹖ 港 片 太 偏 重 主 角 明 星 , 太 不 肯 在 基 本 枝 節 上 花 本 錢 、 下 工 夫 了 。

[Dance of a Dream]  Dancing and Dancing

[Mingpao]  The name of this movie seems to be for Sandra Ng, there is seldom such a co-incidence.  It can be seen that Sandra immersed herself wholly in this movie.  Of course, the theme of this love story is [Love a man], and this [man] is Andy Lau.  He works very hard even for behind the scene's work.  Obviously he wants to prove to himself that, not only can he act and sing, he qualified as a dancing star too.

Since he has never had any professional training in dancing, Andy Lau's performance in [Dance of a Dream] as an instructor of social dances is superb.  Besides tango, he can even jump and stretch his legs in one line, that is really not easy.  In fact, the feel of dancing he gives to the audience is better than Aaron Kwok, who also featured as a dancing instructor  in the movie of [Para, Para, Sakura] by Ma Chor Shing, the director, that was screened during the last summer.  Aaron Kwok looks much better in the Kung Fu movies, as he can bring about the attraction of a mix of Kung Fu and dancing.

[Dance of a Dream], as a movie, surpasses [Para Para, Sakura], because Para Para dancing is just for the youth and the passion of Para Para is only short lived, while the social dances have become popular since 90's, and they are focus of the ballrooms of upper class.  But as a dancing movie, with its love story, [Dance of a Dream] can't be compared with the Australian movie [Mu Chuk Oi Foo Far] and the Japanese movie [Tan Tan Chin, Til Til Mu], from which it gets the inspiration.

Sandra Ng was featured as a waitress, she is attracted to Andy Lau by his dance.  She decides to join the dancing class, and also works part time as a cleaning lady for Andy Lau.  She is just like Cinderella. However, Anita Mui, as a successful business lady,  is overwhelmed by Andy Lau as well.  Also she becomes the focus of Andy Lau.  So one is from the upper class, one from the working class, both fall in love with one man.  That is how a triangular love starts.  

The script of this movie is written by Chow Man Keung.  Though according to the Movie Bi-weekly, both Lau Wai Keung and Andy Lau are directors, regardless who is the director, we can see Andy Lau works hardest.  He must have practiced dancing very hard.  We should not compare him with those professional Latin dancers, as a dancer for a commercial movie, he is reckoned as good.  As for the two leading actresses, Anita Mui, with her tall and slender figure, and her great experience in dancing, is definitely a better matching with Andy Lau in dancing: Sandra Ng, only has one dance at the ending part of this movie.  She has less chance to show her dancing skill, not like the Cinderella in [Para, Para, Sakura], who finally becomes a great dancer after training.

If we just want to see a few movie stars dancing, this movie can meet our expectation.  But the story is too common.  The triangular love lacks a sparkling feeling, it just tries to create a conflict between real love and money.  Also the ending is not clear.  I am most disappointed at the dancing school, from the start to the end, there are only a few students, even worse than those dancing classes organized by local district councils.  Really no fun.

If this is to be an important Christmas movie, and professional instructors are hired to help in this movie, why there are only such a few students?  This is another proof that Hong Kong production stresses too much on leading actor/actress.  They don't like to spend money on the basic story line or details. 

By Sei Kee

石 琪  

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Last updated: June 24, 2004.