Hong Kong Digital is sponsored by ...
Please see the Hong Kong Digital home page for a special offer from Poker Industries to Hong Kong Digital readers.

March 11th, 2002 Issue #99a

Hong Kong Digital is a recurring series of movie reviews by John Charles -- associate editor / film reviewer for Video Watchdog magazine and the author of The Hong Kong Filmography.

His Name Is Nobody
(1979; Sharp Films Company)

Cover art courtesy Mei Ah.

A Masterpiece
Highly Recommended
Very Good
Marginal Recommendation
Not Recommended
Definitely Not Recommended

Cantonese: Mo ming siu jut
Mandarin: Wu ming xiao zu
English: Anonymous Small Fry


Another of the Old School indies that helped to establish the kung fu comedy genre, this scattershot effort stars Lau Kar-wing as bumbling conman Peking Dog, who seeks to learns the secrets of the trade from super thief Sting (Dean Shek Tien). The pair begin a lucrative partnership but may end up making even bigger money if Sting accepts an offer from his equally crooked brother (Karl Maka, who also directed) to eliminate notorious assassin Ping the Dreg (Chung Fat). The plan goes disastrously wrong, with the target escaping and Dog and Sting becoming separated. The youth finds a new master in the form of the aged but deadly Koo (Leung Kar-yan), whose teachings dramatically increase Dog's skills. However, a chance reunion with Sting leads to another encounter with The Dreg.

Leung Kar-yan (left) and Lau Kar-Wing (right). Image courtesy Mei Ah.

While occasionally impressive, the martial arts here are not on par with those on display in other Lau Kar-wing films from the same period, like THE ODD COUPLE and DIRTY TIGER, CRAZY FROG (reviewed in issue #26). The comedy is also quite broad and Shek is so over-the-top in the first half, one is relieved when his character disappears from the narrative for an extended period. That said, the master / student relationship between Lau and Leung is quite enjoyable (with some choice training concepts) and things improve when the storyline takes a serious turn in the second half. While Maka’s direction is largely traditional, the inclusion of some blatantly anachronistic verbal gags demonstrate the change the genre was undergoing at this time. Meg Lam Kin-ming and Lam Ching-ying also appear.

DVD Specs:

Mei Ah #DVD-461
Dolby Digital 2.1
Cantonese and Mandarin Language Tracks (both post-synched)
Optional Subtitles In English or Chinese (Traditional or Simplified)
9 Chapters Illustrated In the Menu With Stills
Letterboxed (2.34:1)
Coded for ALL Regions
96 Minutes
Contains comedic martial arts violence and moderate violence

DVD menu courtesy Mei Ah.

Film Board Ratings and Consumer Advice

Ontario: PG


Like most of the other old school films offered by Mei Ah, the transfer has been culled from a brand new, textless source with Chinese credits video burned on. Aside from a few instances of mild, DVNR-related instability, the presentation looks very nice; it is certainly a pleasure to view a movie of this vintage derived from such a clean print. The sound is harsh, and best kept at a low volume, but is no worse than one would expect. There are no extras and Mei Ah still is not bothering to include time coding but, at least, one no longer has to sit through their logo twice to get to the feature.

HIS NAME IS NOBODY is available at Poker Industries.

Click here for more information about The Hong Kong Filmography

Copyright © John Charles 2000 - 2002. All Rights Reserved.
E-mail: mail@dighkmovies.com

Hong Kong Digital is presented in association with Hong Kong Entertainment News In Review