Return of the God of Gamblers (Wong Jing) - A huge hit in Hong Kong (it's the 3rd biggest grossing movie of all time), this finally saw Chow Yun-Fat reprise perhaps his greatest role of all time. And while he is perhaps just as good, he lacks significant help: the supporting characters are nowhere near as well-drawn as in the original, and even the gambling scenes lack the amazing punch (the opening dice battle in the first movie is a classic moment of HK cinema). At times it seems to be played more for laughs than anything else, a great shame since it was the DRAMA which worked first time out, and the plot (Chow's wife is killed, and his son from her womb untimely ripp'd) certainly lends itself to that more than cheap sight gags. Despite all I've said, it's not that bad in itself -- but compared to the original, it is but a pale imitation. C-

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