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犀照 (2006)
49 Days

Reviewed by: Hyomil
Date: 04/07/2011

Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 06/03/2007
Summary: engrossing, entertaining film

Stephen Fung Tak-Lun and Gillian Chung Yan-Tung team up in the engrossing, entertaining film called 49 Days. Produced by Chui Siu-Ming and Lee Fung-Ming, the film does a nice job evoking a colorful by-gone era while generating a number of creepy moments. Mr. Fung stars as an herbalist/physician who has a prosperous practice in his hometown. He has a beautiful wife and a young daughter with a big household staff. His local success is not enough for him and he's compelled to seek fortune and fame in the big city. Off he goes, promising wife and daughter to return in three years time.

Four years later, we pick up the story. Dr. Lau [Fung] now has a prosperous practice and a big, successful, medicinal herb factory in the big city. Garbed in nicely tailored Western-style suit, he's preparing to return to his family. Before he can begin his journey, he falls victim to a greedy monster who frames him for murder and arson. In his most desperate hour, he meets a lawyer named Lam Siu-Chin [Chung]. Lam is fresh out of law school and, being a woman living in this past era, subject to ridicule and roadblocks in the performance of her duties.

49 Days has its genesis in the simple notion that bad things happen to good people. Fung and Chung have a nice chemistry together. Honorable mention goes out to Raymond Wong Ho-Yin who is quite compelling as the villain here. Look for industry veteran, and original Venom, Lo Meng in a supporting role as Chun Bo, the executioner with a heart of gold.

Reviewer Score: 7

Reviewed by: mrblue
Date: 06/28/2006

49 Days is an entertaining foray into the world of Hong kong ghost movies that doesn't really tread any new ground, but should still please fans of the genre. Starring Stephen Fung, it tells the story of a businessman who is framed for the arson of his factory by a jealous co-worker (Raymond Wong). With a tough court case ahead of him, the only lawyer willing to defend the case (Gillian Chung) disappears suddenly, leaving Stephen to face the executioner's blade. However, an escape plan comes his way, and Stephen seems to get away... or does he?

Like I said before, 49 Days doesn't do anything all that new, but it gets pretty far on the strength of its' stars and a slick production, which is a nice contrast to many Hong Kong ghost pictures, which usually use no-name actors and look like they were shot for a budget of fifty cents. There are also a few genuine creep-out moments, such as when Stephen has to sew his severed head on to keep it from falling off. However, the story is pedestrian with no real twists, and there's really not all that much to seperate 49 Days from the dozens and dozens or similar films that Hong Kong has produced over the years.

[review from]

Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: evirei
Date: 03/16/2006
Summary: Mild horror, heavy emotions

Yet another movie featuring Stephen Fung and Gillian. Yeah, the first movie I ever saw both of them collaborating was in House of Fury. In my humble opinion, I think it was quite a good show. I was looking forward for this new show. Yeah... what adds on to the interest of seeing... mmm... the mystery feel the poster manage to create.

The opening title for the movie somehow looks similar to "A Chinese Tall Story". I somehow suspect it is from the same graphics company. The movie starts of with a text intro which tells about the chinese believes in the olden days. According to what is written, when someone burns the rhino horn, they are said to be able to see ghost. Yeah... ghost. Spooky eh?

The story started of by telling a tale where Liu Cheng ( Stephen Fung), a young Chinese herbalist who leaves his beloved wife and daughter and heads to the provincial capital to set up a medicine shop. He promise his wife that he would return to find them as soon as everything is settled down.

Four years has passed. Just when everything seems right, business is good, his shop was blooming, a sudden tragedy happened. Liu decided to leave the capital for a moment to go back and visit his family when he received a letter saying that his wife misses him dearly. On the night before he is leaving, he had dinner with some businessman and Susi. It seems that Susi likes Liu all this while and would do anything to ensure he is by her side.

Suddenly, the movie zoom into one of Liu's trusted partner (Raymond Wong) is trying to burn down the factory where all the herbs are being stored. Susi bump into Raymond and witnessed the crime. However she din tell it out because she wants Liu to stay while Raymond wants to own Liu's fortune.

Liu was then accused of setting his factory on fire and killing everyone. The best part, Raymond betrayed him and accused him of setting the fire. He was sent to jail where Gillian comes into the story as his attorney. Nothing much can be done since most of the witness has been bribed and Susi went missing. Liu was then sentence to death. Yeah.. he was beheaded while Gillian fall into a deep hole and was on koma for a month or so.

Their soul soon crosspath and they both head back to Liu's house. Weird thing start to happen when everything in Liu's house seems to be so dirty and old. Liu then saw a small girl which apperently is his daughter. In the first place, her daughter was shocked and ran upstairs as she can hear someone calling her but she can't see them. When she reaches places with burning candles, she manage to see his father. Reason why? Eh... well.. according to the story, she has breathing problems thus Liu would always grind the rhino horn and make it into candle and burn it. It's suppose to help the breathing problem but hey.... she will also be able to see ghosts.

Everything was cool until Liu notices that he's a ghost himself (yeah, somehow similar to "the Others" and "6th Sense"). The person who execute him tells him that he has only 49 days to be with his family and do what he wants and then he will have to be reborn. Unknown to him, his wife actually commited suicide 2 days before he reach home. The best part comes along as Raymond was back in town trying to get Liu's house.

I quite like this movie as it puts in a lot of emotional tangle between girls and boys, father and daughter, husband and wife, and what not... trust among friends. Yeah, it's not really those shocking horror movie where you have shadows coming here and there.. rather mild but meaningful movie. However they seriously have lack of professional actors and actresses in it. Besides that, I just think everything would be great if the scriptwriter and director does sit down properly and look into lots of.. ermm how should I say this... inconsistency or loopholes in the storyline.

I am confused.. but hey... I must admit the part where Stephen Fung is stitching his head back together with his body is seriously cool! hehehe... I would also give in extra points for the movie just because of Stephen Fung cute dimples.

Reviewer Score: 6