10,000 Bullets   Exploring the world of Cinema from the Arthouse to the Grindhouse™

Blue Jean Monster 
Written by: on September 18th, 2009

Theatrical Release Date: Hong Kong, 1991
Director: Kai Ming Lai
Writer: Ng Kam Hung
Cast: Shing Fui-On, Amy Yip, Chikako Aoyama, David Wu, Billy Chow, Siu-dan Hui

DVD released: January 3rd, 2008
Approximate running time: 91 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: II (Hong Kong)
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo Cantonese, Dolby Digital Stereo Mandarin
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
DVD Release: Joy Sales
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC (Hong Kong)
Retail Price: $9.99

Synopsis: A good-natured cop on-the-beat wants just one thing from life, to see his son born. Later, as an reanimated corpse, his has an additional desire to bring his killers to justice.

Shing Fui-On recently passed (08/27/2009) after an extensive career of 165 films.  Mostly he played thugs and henchmen, sometimes in high profile films (The Killer), also in low budget genre classics like Her Vengeance as the psychotic rapist [okay, more psychotic than usual]. This type casting was mostly due to his bulky build and craggy face, earning him the nickname ‘Big Crazy’. Blue Jean Monster presents a rare [only?] starring role for the big guy.

This Cat II rated film contains some intense and fairly graphic scenes of suspense and violence – in the beginning, middle, and end. These are interspersed with situational comedy as Fui-On tries to cope with being dead, his pregnant wife, and his extremely irritating young ward. The only [marginal] justification for this character being so obnoxious is that he is an orphan with a leg brace. His would-be girlfriend is just as bad, and may be indirectly responsible for Shing’s death by absconding with the stolen loot. Certainly she places everyone’s lives (and electrically induced reanimation) in peril.

Fui-On was an experienced and in-demand actor, and he switches from psychotic monster to comedic spouse much more fluidly that the script. Pauline Wong (the victim of Fui-On in Her Vengeance!) has a thankless role as the very pregnant wife, who’s job is to nag, fret, and bicker with the ward. As Fui-On comments, “Women without periods can be very irritable”.

The most famous name belongs to Amy Yip in a cameo as Death-Rays. The fart jokes having been accomplished she turns up for the sex jokes. The thriller parts feature an excellent John Carpenter-ish synthesizer score, and the atmosphere and effects are similar to the Angel TV show.

The DVD:

Widescreen anamorphic, original language, removable English subtitles. The picture quality is of this unrestored source is only fair – later releases seem to be higher quality but it’s still quite enjoyable. Some of the shortcomings are probably due to the budget, lighting, etc. and it seems improbable this title will ever be restored. The exciting (and spoiler ridden) trailer is included.

The comedic and thrilling aspects are mostly kept distinct, with the comedy predominant but the thriller more memorable. There is significant character development, though the characters are mostly unlikable, if not despicable. Our protagonist couple, however, must be excused for their actions due to being pregnant and dead.

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