Unusual Youth, The
Hong Kong 2005
Directed by Dennis Law.

A group of young adults growing up on Cheung Chau find their friendship somewhat slightly tested as each person has pretty average things happen to them. Race Wong and Yan Ng are the girls, and Marco Lok, Raymond Wong, and Ronnie Cheung are the boys. Each major plot point is followed by a montage of one (or several) cast members thinking about that plot point while a cantopop song plays in the background. These moments sort of look like Karaoke videos and are about as interesting. The only fire in the production comes courtesy of Helena Law Lan, who plays Marco Lok's mean, nasty, vindictive grandmother. When she attacks him with a broom one day, his push knocks her out and he flees to Shenzhen for fear she will convince the police to arrest him. While in Shenzhen he gets tazered, robbed, and falls in with a gang who sell child prostitutes. I guess Shenzhen is almost as bad as Vancouver. THE UNUSUAL YOUTH is obviously trying to emulate TRUTH OR DARE: 6TH FLOOR REAR FLAT, but fails to create as much of an impact or make a statement. While I appreciated that it isn't just another teen romance, it isn't much of anything else, either. A standout moment in the film is its opening scene -- a dream in which Marco Lok dreams he is a comic book superhero, fighting against Godzilla -- who has the face of Law Lan. This animated sequence is visually creative and promises a zany energy that the remainder of the film fails to deliver. Herman Yau was cinematographer, and Lam Suet and Simon Yam make brief cameo appearances. If nothing else, the film is a good record of modern day Cheung Chau.

Rating: Not Recommended (Not Recommended)

Posted by Peter Nepstad on October 04, 2005.

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