review by Neo

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A typical Korean flick with a touch of HK flair…
It’s been a while since, Neo last witness a Korean flick, namely Daisy, but in many ways it is a HK movie with Korean actresses. Likewise, the latest inclusion of the My Wife is a Gangster series, is a Korean movie with a touch of HK flair provided by Shu Qi and a string of former HK action stars. The result is a typical easygoing Korean flick that is slightly freshened up with some inspiring HK style filmmaking and action sequences. Shu Qi isn’t exactly the small territory brightest talent, but what she adds is a different sort of flavor and sexiness that allows her to become an international actress. While Neo have not seen the previous two in the series, it is still safe to say that this is one carefree yet fun flick with the majority of the jokes coming from cultural and language misunderstandings.

The movie goes like this: Shu Qi is mistaken for killing some triad boss in HK and as a result she decided to hide in Korea. There she resides with a bunch of low life gangsters who are really a bunch of cowards. Little did they know that Shu Qi is not just another pretty face, but the fact that she is one heck of a good fighter…

Korean cinema is always well produced and this one is without exception. In blending the two cultures of HK triads and Korea gangsters, it creates interesting premises as to how dangerous and dominating HK triads are comparing to their respective counterparts. The blending of cultural differences adds an extra layer into the film and in turn providing some outburst of laughter from the audience. This is especially evident whenever Hyun Young provides fake translation from Shu Qi’s Mandarin to Lee Bum Soo’s Korean. Another aspect of credit must be attributed to director Cho Jin Kyo who seamlessly re-created the HK feel of action sequences that is almost lost in HK cinema nowadays. The fights scenes are extremely well though out and some that involved Shu Qi running through the narrow corridor is both fun and cool.

As to the performance of Shu Qi, she is immensely easy to watch and provides some much needed freshness for a movie that is third in the series. Her movements are fluent and perform her kicking with much flair. It leaves the audience wondering whether there is extensive use of stuntwoman. With that being said, it is still a detracting performance and rather one dimension type of acting. The effect is like the audience feeling cold and emotionless towards an actress who seems so distant. As for her love interest, Lee Bum Soo provides some much needed comic relief and together they do sort of make a hilarious odd couple. There is one notable scene that once again lifts the movie, involving Shu Qi sitting on Lee’s thing while driving the car down a mountain of stairs. It leaves the audience with some space of imagination as well as some worthy comic moments.

All in all, My Wife is a Gangster 3 is really just another Korean movie that is extremely well produced. Luckily the director smartly interweaves a blend of HK style of action, actors and explosion into the tired and cliché genre. The language barrier isn’t exactly something new, but still it serves as a ground basis for comedy to build on. Nonetheless, this is still an enjoyable movie that is both fun and at times seemingly cool. As for My Wife is a Gangster 4, it is really better off for the series just to die off, but if it has to be made, adding Jessica Alba in the mix will definitely refreshes the audience…

I rate it 7.25/10

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Starring: Shu Qi, Lee Bum-Soo, Hyeon Yeong, Oh Ji-Ho, Jo Hee-Bong, Ti Lung, Ken Lo Wai-Kwong, Sek Sau, Choi Ryeong, Kim Byeong-Choon, Cho Sang-Rok, Choi Hak-Rak, Ji Dae-Han, Sin Choong-Sik, Lee Gi-Yong, Choi Min-Soo
Directed by: Cho Jin-Kyoo
Genre: Action/ Comedy

Trailer/Short Clip: