King Gambler (1976)

Directed by
Reviewed by Simon 4/19/2006
Reviewed by Simon on 2006-04-19

A family of legendary tricksters team up to take revenge on a swindler who blinds and frames one of their teachers. Hong Kong has made a lot of gambling/trickster movies, but I suppose this must be one of the first? There are many elements that recur in countless films (most of them by Wong Jing), chiefly regarding the almost supernatural ability of the gamblers to control the odds in their favour. It's not just gambling here though, with a variety of cons being played out to exact a rather vague vengeance on a villainous Chen Kuan-Tai.

I suppose the film is pretty well made, but it didn't capture my interest... I didn't have any emotional investment in the schemes or care who won or lost (as if there was any room for doubt). As such, it all left me pretty cold.

I suppose real fans of the gambling genre will want to see it though!