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Capsule Reviews

Single Blog    (2007)
At the complete risk of sounding like a worn record, here’s another example of old fashioned Hong Kong filmmaking saving an otherwise mediocre release. There’s hardly anything unique per se about Single Blog, and even its title is completely irrelevant, but the movie does revive, or more like mimic, what used to pass for traditional comedy in the world’s previously third-largest cinema hub, and so it is watchable.

We said the title is irrelevant, and indeed we didn’t notice anything even remotely bloggish about Single Blog. Sure, it has a cast of single young women experiencing the various aspects of sex life in HK, but a blog? Forgive us if we missed something, but that seems rather unlikely given the short runtime and rather shallow story on display. At most you have the characters talking to the camera to recount their oh-so profound discoveries about sexual existentialism, but there’s no online presence anywhere. The only computers are a couple of Macs at an office that nobody even uses on camera. Bummer.

Rain Lee (lately observed in the excellent On the Edge) leads a trio of females cruising around in a version of the city where people in apparently mundane jobs can afford a huge apartment on exclusive Stubbs Road (on the way to Victoria Peak) and everyone insists on shopping Calvin Klein no matter what. As attractive yoga instructor Kitty, Rain Lee discovers to her shocked dismay that her boyfriend isn’t as faithful as previously was believed to be the case, launching her on a romp through a hormone-infused gauntlet of casual encounters and meaningless sex. The message? Live life while you can and never look back. Noble enough, but don’t count on Single Blog to deliver Cartesian lessons in philosophy. Instead, it’s packed with surprisingly risqué content, often depicting one on one, steamy action in a borderline Category III fashion that’s quite uplifting. Kitty’s backed by her two friends, the salacious floozy Vi (Jo Kuk) and good-girl gone lesbian Mei Wah (Monie Tung), who gets it going with her upper class lady boss when life’s other avenues of gratification offer no solace.

Cameos from pretty boy Raymond Wong Ho Yin and his Love Undercover colleague, stalwart Hui Siu Hung, affirm Single Blog’s status as harkening back to the good old days of HK raucous comedy. This is brought up to date with the appearance of more recent celeb notables like Carl Ng (the horny silent cop from Colour Blossoms), who stops by for a helpful bit part. There’s gags aplenty, some actually funny (check out the love hotel shuttle bus scene -- pretty hilarious!), others adequate. But it never gets boring, and with fortification in the form of clothes flying off lithe bodies and bed covers cresting and falling via the wonders of male anatomy locomotion, who’s to complain?

In the end, it boils down to role reversals, taking chances with your romantic escapades and finding bodily magnetism in the most unexpected places. Were it rendered in the contemporaneous held-back, timid and overly politically correct version of HK comedy (the variety geared primarily towards puritan mainland markets), Single Blog would have been a disastrous waste of time. Thankfully, it isn’t like that at all: this movie at least tries to be fun, does the most with its restrictive rating, and, while not exactly a memorable gem, can be a reasonable addition to your Hong Kong comedy collection given the genre’s sad state as of late. Another lesson? Everything in life’s relative.

Rating: 6/10
Lee Alon 6/6/2007 - top

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 6/6/2007 Lee Alon

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