Since he was a kid, Wai realized that he had to work hard to achieve his own status. One day when he hurries for a meeting, his car crashes and he dies in the accident. On the other hand, high school sports team leader Kaka was born in a wealthy family. Her team loses every game, but she would not admit it. Excited as she gets a Mini Cooper from her father, Kaka drives it out right away, only to find that the car is out of control. Later she and her brother discover that the car is previously owned by Wai and his spirit is now lingering in the car.
Nine Girls and a Ghost (9 Tieu Thu Va 1 Con Ma) is a film typically produced exclusively for its target audience. He is nothing more than a story of canned trivia and generally enjoyable laughter. Nothing really challenging happens, and that’s exactly how they like it. The film is about cinematic regurgitation. Lead singer Raymond Wong did not have to dig too deep for the premise of this; It was used many years ago in its popular series “Happy Ghost”. The concept was cheap then … Do not expect too much. But the movie also has the good side: pretty girls, cute face, easy-to-digest “dishes,” and a lovable production that fits the people who probably buy Cookie albums exactly what they read “Cookies” because the movie swims more is a great “cookie”.
The good news is that this movie is not the cesspool of awful I long imagined it to be. For a few fleeting moments. I was mildly charmed. And I can at least excuse the teen lot for wanting to see their favorite “singers/actors” projected on a very large screen. Of course the bad news is that the movie is longer than those few moments. And I’m no longer a lovestruck adolescent. Nevertheless, I managed to power through this tour de farce starring lead Cookie Stephy Tang as Kaka. A supremely spoiled brat who sweet talks her father into buying her a Mini Cooper. She soon discovers that it’s haunted. But luckily the ghost looks like Edison Chen. And he literally bubbles out of the exhaust pipe.
Kaka quickly makes the most of her supernatural friend and uses him for all sorts of unscrupulous schemes, including cheating on an exam and in a basketball game. She and her friends later enlist him in taking down their PE teacher as well. But thankfully, this is a ghost with a conscience. It turns out that Marco, as our spirit is called, used to be a dickish executive who excelled in two things, making money and making people feel miserable. Before crashing to his premature death. He therefore wants to help Kaka and her cookie crumbs formulate some moral code so that they become a touch more virtuous and learn how to rely on their own talents and hard work.
That’s right – one of the takeaways of Nine Girls and a Ghost is that Edison Chen/Marco is a civilizing influence on young girls. This may be the only lesson though. While the movie flirts with character development. The overall effort is too inconsistent to elicit any sympathy. Instead, the overriding emotion is more akin to agony. Hong Kong girls seriously need a new publicity manager because films like this one are not doing them any favors. The whole box of Cookies is insufferable. They lie, cheat, and blackmail their way through life; they are selfish, disrespectful, and manipulative, even towards their own family.
Kaka gets bonus points for taking advantage of her philandering father and verbally abusing her stuttering older brother (Cyrus Wong). My problem is not so much the absurdities of a teenage imagination nor am I suggesting that Hong Kong cinema whitewash all these characters into immaculate, obedient girls. But surely the constant and mind-numbing drumbeat of this snippy adolescent female stereotype cannot be what even the target audience wants.
I am willing to tolerate some degree of bad acting and can step over a few gaping plot holes. Both of which this movie offers in abundance. But my little Hong Kong heart dies a bit every time a young female character spends most of her screen time whining in near dog decibels. Sure, Hollywood spits out similar tales by the dozen. But theirs is a much bigger market for mediocrity, and relatively (key word) far more alternative voices and images find their way into the media.
The spirit of a man killed in a car accident agrees to lead a struggling basketball team to victory on the condition that the captain of the teams helps him to restore his memory after achieving victory on the court. Edison Chan and the pop-group Cookies star in this easygoing supernatural comedy.
Directed By: Chung Shu Kai
On Disc/Streaming: Jun 29, 2010
Runtime: 96 minutes