Archive for April 27th, 2012

The story begins with a flashback scene as 2 practising geomancer brothers are searching for the holy grail area of Feng Shui in an unnamed country with the hope of locating the ideal burial place when they die. They find the perfect idyllic place based on their theories. The location where they hope to be buried will determine the fortune that will be bestowed on the future generation of their respective families – be it power, wealth or wisdom.  When one brother doesn’t like what the other is saying about where he wants to be buried as he wants his family to be powerful in the future, he makes a run for it with his brother’s mercenary forces in hot pursuit. He barely manages to escape by jumping into a local peasant’s boat but unfortunately the peasant himself is fatally wounded. His final wish is to be buried in the area where his children will acquire some wealth and as gratitude for saving his life the brother carries out his wishes. The brother himself wants to get buried where his son will be granted great intellect. Fast forward 20 years in the future where a young woman Anna who runs a computing company in LA is having dire financial problems and also has to deal with a computer hacker named Wisely.  He is also having his own problems having discovered that he has a brain tumour. It won’t kill him but will make him insane.  Both have a feeling that their misfortune is linked to the burial site of their ancestors and along with an astrologer friend who’s an expert in geomancy and feng shui travel to the country to locate their burial sites. It seems that because an evil person has also been buried in that area the tomb must be destroyed for the bad luck to disappear. However there are complications for the trio when they arrive in the country as the President’s top military general stages a coup and kills the leader. He has plans for world domination using the powers of geomancy, astrology and feng shui. The general’s sister isn’t too happy about this and assists Anna, Wisely and the astrologer with their quest but when the general finds out he goes crazy. Can the trio complete what they originally set out to do and also stop the mad general’s plan with their lives intact?

This is an action packed adventure (a bit like an Indiana Jones style movie) which also contains a mystical element to the story too. It’s to do with feng shui and geomancy which is divination by means of lines and figures or by geographic features. As the movie assumes that the viewer knows something about geomancy in general, this could be why many Western viewers are a little bit confused about the story. No expense was spared with the budget on this production with the movie shot in Los Angeles and in Indochina. The biggest draw in Bury Me High is the superb well staged action scenes with some tanks and heavy weaponry being used. A lot of explosives go off, more than what is usually seen in HK movies. The martial arts is fantastic  – fast, brutal and exciting which is topped off by an amazing three way fight between Moon Lee, Yuen Wah and Chin Kar Lok. The final 20 minutes showcases some of the best intense action scenes in HK cinema you’ll ever see. I also have to mention the beautiful cinematography by Peter Pau. The location they use for the majority of the movie is just gorgeous with a stunning mountain range used as a backdrop. For some reason this movie didn’t do so well at HK cinemas at the time of it’s release. You’d think with the great cast involved it would have done OK but apparently it didn’t. Perhaps the mix of various genres didn’t appeal to audiences?

The cast is uniformly great and play interesting characters from Moon Lee who looks beautiful in her designer outfits (even appearing in a bikini) as the young female tycoon Anna and has some cool fight scenes to Yuen Wah who nearly steals the movie as the mad and nasty villain General Nguen. Sibelle Hu, Chin Kar Lok and even Tsui Siu-Ming (the movie’s director) who play the rest of the 5 leading roles in this movie also contribute hugely to the slick fast paced story.

Despite a bit of a slow start, once Bury Me High gets going you won’t find a better action movie. It’s possible that you may get confused with the storyline. All I can say is just pay close attention to the first 10-15 minutes, take it all in and perhaps then you might understand what’s going on. I loved this movie and I hope you will too.

Sadako’s Rating: 4 stars out of 5

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