VULGARIA by Pang Ho-cheung

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Let’s fuck a mule in HK

VULGARIA, the last outrageous Pang Ho-Cheung’s movie hits the 36th Hong Kong International Film Festival.

Taking risks is a second nature for Pang Ho-Cheung, probably the very top HK director on his way to save local movie industry from its slow and monotonous fall. His Cat III hit from 2010 DREAM HOME already used a very serious local matter (a crazy real estate price increase for the last ten years in HK) to deliver a thrilling, free, and extremely original violent murder story. In the comedy area, let’s forget for a moment his two part film LOVE IN THE PUFF/BUFF, much more kind with mainstream audience, to focus on the kind of cultural dynamite which is VULGARIA.

This movie not only focuses on a deep and very violent verbal defense of Guangdong language which is seriously threatened by new policies tending to make it disappear in the Chinese medias. It also manages to build a both touching and extremely hilarious comedy about a struggling independent producer forced to work with some sick fuck triad mob.

Shot in twelve days with a barely written screenplay, VULGARIA, with its ocean of local slang that makes it already a cult movie for any Cantonese speaker, puts in perspective a real producer experience, more or less fictitious stereotyped characters and a real HK movie stars incredibly commited to the project while they all assume in the movie a lousy yet priceless comical self-image

To make it short, a HK producer (wonderful leading Chapman To), desperately in need of money to sustain his visit rights to his young daughter, accepts funds from « Brother Tyrannosaur », a mainland triad mob (incredible Ronald Cheng as usual) to produce an improbable erotic film tribute to Shaw Yin-Yin. How to satisfy the weird fantasies of a dangerous gangster who literally forces you to screw his « mule wife » (probably the most extreme running gag in the movie…) ? How to convince a respectable awarded veteran actress to be back as an erotic star decades after her last kind of movie ? How to bring back to screen an ashamed Hiro Hayama after the « 3D SEX & ZEN experience » ? How to keep going while your assistant (Fiona Sit) sue you with false sexual harassment allegations ? How to make peace between his lover and aspiring movie actress (surprising Dada Cheng – or at least aspiring body double for Shaw Yin-Yin !), with a rude and demanding ex-wife (perfect Crystal Tin) ?

The answers Pang Ho-Cheung and his commited bunch of performers will not only make you laugh out loud (and definitely more), it will also give you a pretty true image of some movie production reality in HK. Above all, Pang Ho-Cheung shows with his movie that there’s no serious matter that can’t be treated in the most comical, out of phase or definitely vulgar way. Let’s just hope that its late release next June will prove that swearings are worth all blessings…

Thomas Maksymowicz

Vulgaria Premiere at the HKIFF, 2012 march 27th.

Chapman To and Dada Cheng


Chapman To and Hiro Hayama


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