House of Fury is light fluff that combines Disney family values with martial arts acumen exuding a wholly goofy charm that while laden with flaws still manages to ultimately entertain. Director Stephen Fung takes the shotgun approach to filmmaking reaching into his bag of tricks and pulling out many disparate elements in a vain attempt to hope that some stick. Lucky for him, most do and while many will groan at ill-advised attempts at wit or roll their eyes as the formulaic plot creaks forward the overall jovial mood and winning personalities make this a mostly enjoyable ride.
It’s A Boy/Girl Thing is yet another tired installment featuring the gimmicky plot device of body switching that once again goes over well traveled ground seen in other films of this type. With a narrative so easily telegraphed that you instinctively know how it will end only after five minutes of screen time it’s a wonder that it manages to stay mostly buoyant attributed solely to two genuinely affable leads.
Sometimes audiences have to wonder if originality is an unknown concept in Hollywood as it seems that every year brings us a bevy of remakes based on previous hit films or television series. It’s getting to the saturation point where just about every blockbuster property from the past has spurned a new film in an effort to reignite the franchise for modern audiences. However, one wonders if producers are keeping track with a scorecard on how many of these efforts are successful as the majority are frankly downright appalling going so far as to either insult the existing fanbase or being not at all appealing to new viewers. Then again, it might even hit the double whammy of alienating both demographic groups as audiences stream out of the cinema demanding their money back.
Jae-young Kwak is not a household name in the West and indeed not even in the East although viewers are most definitely aware of some of his past work that includes the South Korean mega-blockbuster My Sassy Girl which tore through the Asian box office like a tornado and firmly established its two young stars Jun Ji-hyun and Cha Tae-hyun. His follow-up, Windstruck, also starring Jun Ji-hyun while including some of the same themes was not nearly as successful. This time around Jae-young Kwak turns to an all Japanese cast with his newest film Cyborg She that basically concludes his romantic comedy trilogy.