Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Fantasia 2010: Sophie's Revenge (2009)

This is the tenth film review in the coverage of Montreal's Fantasia International Film Festival. There certainly was a time when filmmakers from mainland China didn't dabble too much in making blockbusters. Obviously, Sophie's Revenge looks like score of other romantic comedies you've seen. However, it's a rather entertaining film.

Sophie (Zhang Ziyi), a comic book artist/writer, has been in relation with Jeff (Ji-seob So), a surgeon, for two years. While they were supposed to get married, Jeff falls for Joanna (Bingbing Fan), a movie star, after he had operated her. Obviously, Sophie is devastated and she doesn't want to face her mom who organized the mariage. With two months left before the day, Sophie will try to win Jeff back with the help of her two best friends, Lucy (Ruby Lin) and Lilly (Chen Yao).

Sophie also intends to publish a comic book targetting women. With this book, Sophie wants to teach to every women in the world the "scientific" way to win their loved one back. Besides, after she had met Gordon (Peter Ho), a photograph who personally knows Joanna, at a party, Sophie asks for his help. However, Sophie's quest for revenge against Joanna turns out to be harder than she thought.

Honestly, Sophie's Revenge will likely dismay fans of romantic films. Since the film uses many cheap tricks from other blockbusters, its storyline is very predictable in that we already know what will happen to Sophie at the end just by reading the synopsis. Besides, the use of plot twists near the end is an insult to one's intelligence, because it turns out that the screenwriter decided to stay the course no matter what. However, Sophie's Revenge isn't entirely bad, because it can definitely rely on the charisma of Zhang Ziyi, the film's leading lady. In fact, although she does some questionable things to win Jeff back, Zhang's charisma (and also charm) makes it easy for us to root for her.

Finally, one can't say that Sophie's Revenge is downright bad, because I'd rather watch this with my girlfriend rather than any given turd from the Twilight series. Although Sophie's Revenge dramatic parts fit into a soap opera, the film won't have any difficulty to make you laugh. Besides, Zhang Ziyi, in a romantic comedy, is certainly more likeable than many Hollywood actresses.

Rating: 2.5/5

Origin:China/South Korea (2009)
Length:107 minutes
Genre:Romantic comedy
Screenplay:Yimeng Jin
Director:Yimeng Jin
Starring:Zhang Ziyi, Peter Ho and Ji-seob So

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