The Demoness from 1,000 Years

After her huge success in a Chinese Ghost Story, Joey Wong went on to star in a number of fantasy films in which she played similar ethereal ghost/spirit/fairy type characters. There is just something calm, enchanting and otherworldly about her face that makes her look so right for these roles. Some of these films that followed were pretty good while others looked like they were put together with cardboard and wires. This film has a little bit of both – there are some low budget but enjoyable fantasy sequences – but they are unfortunately bookends to a fairly dull pointless story.

At the beginning of the story a Taoist priest is battling a demon woman – pure evil (who has a passing resemblance to a dark haired Zsa Zsa Gabor!) – who is trying to break through some barrier in order to gain access to the real world. The priest is slowly losing the contest and so he calls upon his two fairy disciples – Joey Wong and Gloria Yip – and tells them that they must steal the Bead of Hell and then go into the future to locate Heaven’s Sun Bead. Only by combining these two magic beads can the Demoness from a Thousand Years be destroyed. After a fun – wire flying – swordfighting – sleeve whipping fight – Joey is able to steal the Bead of Hell – but Gloria gets put into a state of frozen hibernation. Joey then flies off into the future with the demoness in close pursuit. A very neat beginning and my hopes were high.

But as soon as Joey travels into the present day, the film crashes to the ground with a loud thud. She literally falls into the path of Jacky Cheung and he takes her home. He is suppose to be a super cop – but one would never guess it from this film as it takes him a very long time to figure out that she is not exactly human. Nearly the next hour of the film is taken up with them falling in love. Joey seems so infatuated with him that she forgets all about finding Heaven’s Sun Bead – oh Joey – remember that fight against evil to save the world? No, instead she discovers this modern day luxury called . .  . shopping – all played out to Jacky Cheung songs on the soundtrack! She is also a bit concerned that she is nearly a thousand years older than Jacky. Oh, stop worrying - lots of men like older women!
Well, sooner or later you know that the Demoness will show up and thankfully she finally does (maybe she was shopping for all her demoness friends back home!). It turns out – not too surprisingly I guess – that Jacky is the key to finding the Heaven’s Sun Bead and he teams up with a few cops – one being a young Andy Hui – and Joey to fight the Demoness. This last segment of the film once again gets into the spirit of the beginning – and it is fairly enjoyable – though after an hour of slow moving dross a poke in the eye would have been entertaining.
The film just misses out on a lot of opportunities that a film like The Iceman Cometh capitalized on. Here you have these two women from the past with supernatural powers in modern day HK and the filmmakers do absolutely nothing with that premise.

My rating for this film: 5.5