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Paper Marriage (1988)


Set in Canada, Bo (Sammo Hung) is an ex-light weight-boxing champion who has ran himself into debt by gambling on the horses. He attempts to make money by being a guinea pig for scientist, basically being a pincushion for students learning acupuncture.

Running low on money and ideas, Bo talks to his uncle Tsai at the local boxing club and asks if there was any work for him, unfortunately no, but he insisted that he could make some good money taking part in a paper marriage.

Bo meets Jade (Maggie Cheung), from Hong Kong. She is being set up with Bo so that she can stay in Canada and live with her boyfriend, Peter (Alfred Cheung). Peter promises Bo a good couple grand to go through with this marriage, although after the wedding, Peter flees and leaves both Bo and Jade.

Peter leaves a message saying he ran into debt and he can’t come back for Jade. Jade is devastated and now she has to live with Bo to keep the immigration office at bay. Now desperate for money, Bo re-enters the boxing ring to get some money. He finds out that if he beats his ex-wife’s (Joyce Godenzi) new boyfriend, Billy (Billy Chow) he will get all his debts cleared. Jade even does her part by competing in a mud wrestling competition…

Things take a good when they discover a big bag of cash, although Bo believes that it might be drug money…

Not going any further, I’ll tell you my thoughts. Alfred Cheung has made a real decent film, although some flaws are noticeable.This is pretty much a spoiler so please skip the rest of this paragraph if you don’t want the story spoiled for you. I was annoyed at the ending, Maggie Cheung waking up to find out it was all a bad dream. I find this to be the easy way out. Thinking Alfred got to the scene where Sammo, Maggie and Dick Wei were all surrounded by the police and he thought to himself ‘Now What?’. Instead of coming up with a more appropriate ending he took the easy way out.

Action, great we get to see some classic Sammo, even a brutal kick boxing match against Billy Chow. Although it doesn’t have a scratch on cool fights at the end with Sammo fighting Chin Kar-Lok, Billy Chow against Dick Wei and Maggie Cheung fighting a mimic artist (who looks really similar to Hsiao Ho, Although with the face paint I cant be sure).

Not giving the film much too thought, its a great way to spend the evening, the film has comedy, action, drama and even a small splash of romance.

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