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One Armed Boxer

The Trough (2018)

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I got through watching THE TROUGH earlier last month, and what a bloody disconnected trainwreck of a superhero film this is. I mean, I do check for Cheung and thought that HUNGRY GHOST RITUAL wasn't half-bad as the actor-turned-director's debut feature, but this?  Yes, the whole thing's a hoot, you might consider the colour-drained, rain-drenched look of the film as 'stylish' and who knows, THE TROUGH might even stand a chance to end up as one of those "so bad it's (almost) good' cult movies in the future (it proved to be a box office dud anywhere it played in the here & now!)

The plot's going bonkers from the word go, storytelling continuity, cohesion and logic seem to be alian concepts, dialogues fluctuate between badass, bizarre and soppy  and the more Cheung is playin' it straight as  an undercover supercop, the less appealing his role gets. Still, despite all that being said, the plentiful action cartoon sequences of THE TROUGH do work for the most part, bordering on the ridiculously entertaining during the child hostage and the laundromat shoot-outs in particular (CG bloodspurts are as OTT-terrible as in, say, THE MOBFATHERS, but tonally they do fit better here given the unintentional hilarity of the proceedings). And that hardcore HK film geeks get to see a cast of familiar faces is a plus as well ! THE TROUGH even begins to get moderately engaging in its middle part, but then dips again when Xu Jinglei is revealed to be "the boss" and god-awful dialogue, predictability and pitiful green-sceen work take over.

Its all capped off with an unctious say-no-to-drugs message Cheung delivers in a totally unrelated final scene in Thailand- as if the the film had anything to do with drug pedding, but who gives a fuck if you wanna coax the SARPPFT into passing your patchy, mutilated looking mess of a film.

Edited by Sheng

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