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Review: "Lost in Thailand"

2012-12-24 15:35:14 Quarterly

A still from "Lost in Thailand." [Photo: douban]

Chinese comedy "Lost in Thailand" is a new topical film currently in Chinese cinemas. A powerful cast including Wang Baoqiang, Huang Bo and Xu Zheng hit the box office to the tune of 100 million yuan within three days of the release, not bad for a low budget production of 30 million. For more on this, here is our movie reviewer, Laiming.


For the last three weeks, we've been talking about some pretty serious movies. Watching Life of Pi, 1942 or The Last Supper is not the most cheerful way to spend an easy afternoon over the weekend. Well, the producers of "Lost in Thailand" couldn't have picked a better time. It is high time that Chinese viewers be presented with a decent comedy. I can't even recall the last time I shared a hearty laugh at a cinema, not since Men in Black 3 perhaps, and that was half a year ago.

In this case, it is only natural that "Lost in Thailand", being an above-average Chinese comedy, rakes in loads of money from Chinese viewers. The movie is a sequel to the 2010 box office success "Lost on Journey" and retains a similar storyline about a smart-looking businessman and a simpleminded companion on a journey of frustration and absurdity.

The film is still led by a combination of Xu Zheng and Wang Baoqiang; the stark contrast in their characters is the major source comedy. The mere presence of Wang works miracles for a comedy flick. But this time, their cause is aided by Huang Bo from "Crazy Stone" in 2006. Huang is a powerful actor himself, but his presence in this film is well controlled so as not to cloud the chemistry between the leading Xu and Wang, and, indeed, the three of them managed to keep the viewers entertained. I watched this movie during an early showing on Monday morning with scarcely more than ten people, but laughter never died out in that showing.

This is remarkable if you realize that this film is the debut for Xu Zheng as a director. The previous installment directed by Ye Weimin reproduced the annual Diaspora of Chinese migrant workers during the spring festival. In contrast, Xu Zheng sets his story in the South Asian country of Thailand and offers us a taste of the country's exotic scenery and culture. You can't really blame the director for not showing the realities of China since he delivered on a decent comedy, something we've all been wanting for a long time. Let's just wait for what more Director Xu has to offer.

Well, that's pretty much my thoughts on the film, minus the surprise ending, which I won't give away here. So, I'll give you my rating instead: "Lost in Thailand" gets a 6.5 out of ten.

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