Poker King (2009), Romantic Comedy Gambling Love Story
The Chinese Mandarin movie Poker King (2009) was played by Cherrie Ying, Eddie Cheung, Jacky Heung, Jo Kuk, Joe Cheung, Josie Ho, Kama Law, Lau Ching-Wan, Louis Koo, Stephy Tang, Wong Yau-Nam and was produced in in 2009. According to IMDb, the director of this film, it is entrusted to the director from Hong Kong, Chan Hing-Ka and Janet Chun.
Poker King is first of all an intimate comedy, despite what its poster and title might suggest. Yes, almost any person consequential in this movie here will end up with eventually someone else happily-ever-after, and no body goes away completely empty-handed (pun intended).
The movie tells a love story about the heir to a casino in Macau who is not interested in taking over his casino business. He then decides to leave for Canada.
Randy (Louis Koo) is the heir to a major casino business, but has never been interested to inherit the gaming empire after his father’s death. While Uno (Lau Ching Wan) has been helping to run the business, he has every intention for Randy to take the business empire over.
Randy is obsessed with online gaming of Texas Hold ‘Em Poker and Uno takes the opportunity to put Randy in a tournament that is real. Randy is the subject of some hardship before he learns the creative art regarding the game.
On the way, Randy falls in deep love with Smiley (Cherrie Ying), a lady that has a streak that is winning the casino. Meanwhile, Uno starts a relationship with rival casino owner Ms Fong (Josie Ho).
The two top players – Randy and Uno face off against each other at the end of the championship match. Given that hand that is last of is dealt into the two players, who is going to be the Poker King?
Poker King (2009) Review
If there is one proverbial theme in the reputation for Hong Kong cinema, it has to be gambling. Indeed, the theme has been immortalized through the action that is cool such as for instance “God of Gamblers” and “Casino Raiders” into the broad slapstick comedies of “Kung Fu Mahjong” and “Fat Choi Spirit”.
The latest director to take a stab at what has become a cross-genre theme is Chan Hing-Kar, better known for his fluffy romantic comedies “La Brassiere”, “Mighty Baby” and “Good Times, Bed Times”.
One huge difference needless to say is its Macau setting and its own lavish brightly-lit casinos, set to rival Las Vegas whilst the no. 1 gambling destination on the planet.
Each of the three comedic hits also boasted the combo that is one-two of Ching Wan and Louis Koo, therefore it’s not surprising that Chan Hing-Kar would reunite each of them for just one more agreeable, if throwaway, diversion.
This must come as somewhat of a shock, since what receives top billing here is the rivalry between Jack Chang (Louis Koo), son and heir of a wealthy casino tycoon, and Uno Cheuk (Lau Ching Wan), business partner of Jack’s father. In a clearly outmatched poker game, Jack loses the rightful business to Uno and is reduced to a pauper overnight.
To the contrary, he’s actually pretty likeable. He’s also more interesting since the rags-to-riches gambling addict who ascends towards the higher echelons of society but is disillusioned by the disparity because of the types of life he spent my youth in.
Unfortunately, the movie seems to be interested in the rise-and-fall of Louis Koo’s Jack Chang, spending over fifty percent its time on Jack’s budding romance with a sweet girl called Smiley (Stephy Tang) whom he thinks is his lucky charm, in addition to Smiley’s friend Ho’s (Wong You Nam) own crush on a casino dealer that is pretty.
Their romantic dalliances will without doubt be cute and cloying into the younger audience brought up on urban romantic comedies Stephy Tang is a go-to actress for, but everyone else is going to be rolling their eyes at the dialogue that is sometimes cringe-worthy.
Poker King (2009) Ending
As you’d probably expect, Jack and Uno will meet in your final showdown, and sweet victory should come towards the one who deserves it.
But before you imagine that is going to be a thriller, know this- Jack and Uno are far more friendly rivals than arch bitter enemies, or at least that’s how it is portrayed in Poker King.
While greedy and somewhat arrogant, Lau Ching Wan’s Uno Cheuk is a smarmy, but never detestable, businessman.
Needless to say, this movie is all about a distraction through the supposed competition between Jack and Uno.
So much so that even up until their final battle filmed during the Asian Poker Tour Macau Festival.
You probably won’t feel much tension between the two, or worse still, care who wins in the end.
Luckily then for the always reliable actor Lau Ching Wan, who boldly hams it up for the movie, as well as Louis Koo, who effuses a affable enough air to help you warm up to his character through the movie’s sometimes unfunny shenanigans.
Read more: The 25 Best Gambling Movies of All Time