Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Girl With The Diamond Slipper with Maggie Cheung

Wearing a pair of sky-blue, dangerously short shorts, Maggie Cheung peddles her bicycle down a street in Hong Kong in the start of 1985's Girl With The Diamond Slipper. Maggie is impossibly beautiful here and the sexiness of the opening is a tiny bit of a shock given the actress' stature; maybe I've just got a dirty mind?

Girl With The Diamond Slipper, sometimes listed as Modern Cinderella, is a Wong Jing film -- the director is in it too -- so you have been warned.

Anthony Chan, from 1988's One Husband Too Many with Cherie Chung, here plays a harsh TV producer who holds the key to success for aspiring actress Maggie Cheung but Maggie has the hots for a handsome businessman.

Add to that mix Nat Chan and Wong Jing as jewel thieves who seem to be running into Maggie at every turn and you have the beginnings of this Cinderella spoof.

I just want to mention one little scene in this to illustrate what a horrible filmmaker Wong Jing sometimes is. Nat Chan catches sight of Maggie Cheung on TV in a historical drama. In the TV drama, Maggie accidentally spills a drink on the leading lady playing the empress.

Now, wouldn't a TV producer edit out a blooper like that? Yes, of course he or she would. But Wong Jing is so inept, or lazy, that his only way to show Maggie's inexperience as an actress is this clearly implausible scene, a scene whose only purpose is to let Nat Chan see the character as a new, stumbling actress on television.

Compared to 1985's Prince Charming, Girl With The Diamond Slipper is positively tedious. I don't know what it was, but the farce felt more forced than normal and the charms of a young, luminous Maggie were not enough to keep me entertained.

Maggie Cheung completists can order Girl with the Diamond Slipper on DVD here.

Maggie is dreaming of a day when her career doesn't involve Wong Jing films.