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Guest Kurosaki Ichigo

[TVB-A] Journey To The West - 西游记 [1996]

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Story

Being a devout Buddhist and knowing a bit about Chinese folklore and mythologies, I cannot help being agitated at the naive view of the producer. It was evident from tacky scripts that the scriptwriters were ignorant of the real Buddhist teaching. It was also fair to say that the whole series has lost sight of the original theme of being a holy quest of a monk and his disciples. The whole show has basically been reduced into a whimsical serial, although admittedly a well-done production on its own.

 

The basic story is about a young monk in the era of Tang Dynasty set foot westward to fetch Buddhism Cannons back to China to reestablish Buddhism fate. From help of Goddess of Mercy (Guan Yim), he gained three disciples and a white horse, which was originally a dragon prince. Together, they braved various dangers throughout the long journey that took over a decade.

 

This is really a religious tale favored with many fantasy ideologies, mixed with folklore and myths. The main four characters should show their developments in saintliness and their understandings of Buddha's words as they progressed in their journey (Please read on. This is really a review, not a brochure to convert your belief. * smile *).

 

The monk, in my opinion, should be an ordinary man with strong determination and benevolent character. Yet, he was without means of protection, hence the need of three disciples to help him go through all obstacles. All the way, he and the others would get tested and tempted numerous times in many ways, but he would remain steadfast and went on after subduing the cause of those desires. Demons represented human sins, and the monk had to learn to leave all the desire in order to attain the ultimate step in Buddhism world.

 

Cast

Kong Wah as the Tang monk

I think he was the best candidate among the actors in TVB at the time although I don't think he fit that well with the role's description. The monk is supposed to be youthful and rather fragile looking. He is supposed to have the fair skin and tempting look for all demons out there to eat him. Kong Wah looked a bit old and was not innocent enough. Remember that this monk grew up in the temple. He was ordained since young and very clever and enlightened in learning sutras but should be rather naive when dealing with worldly matters such as love. These qualities were not portrayed at all through Kong Wah. All I saw was one confused monk who seemed so superficial. He seemed so strong and sure of himself at times that I wondered why Guan Yim even bothered to send the monkey god to protect him, whereas he could just get out of any hardships by uttering sutras, and voila! yellow letters would come out around him and worked miracles.

 

Dicky Cheung as the monkey god

His 'yo' trademark seemed to be a pioneer for every artist to imitate him when he/she is in a similar role. I found his character lively and lovable although not exactly monkey-like. Admittedly, I'm impressed with his energetic acting although I think he was still far from showing a real monkey side. He was very active in the scenes where he was the focus character. However, he would remain still when the camera was not on him. He was a funny character for sure, but I sometimes wished that he would show a bit restlessness when he transformed himself. The best monkey god that I have seen so far was the one from Chinese production's JTTW. That was a true monkey there.

 

 

Wayne Lai as the pig demon

Despite his inadequate makeup, Wayne Lai was my most favorite character in this series. He had a great chemistry with Dicky Cheung. His personal stories were interesting, and his mishaps were rather entertaining due to his cute acting. There is nothing much to say about this character. He was sent to disrupt the journey and practically to distinguish the fine qualities of his fellow travelers opposite to all his weaknesses. He learned his lessons the hard way throughout the journey though, and his master was kind enough to forgive him every time

 

 

The third disciple and the horse:

** sigh ** It would have been better if they had foregone the white horse. The horse seemed to magically disappear at any 'convenient' time. The water demon was pathetically stupid although he was a bit smarter in this series than the sequel. Their characters were much neglected in contrast to the first two disciples.

Edited by Kurosaki Ichigo

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this movie is very funny. dicky cheung is a funny actor in this movie. it was pretty interesting watching them having the journey to the west

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this is one of my favorites tvb series i ever saw. im looking forward to watch more of dicky's movies and shows because it is very funny!

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my first atv series and loved it. dick was so fresh and cool and sang lots of songs for this series which i also like. monkey king rules. his acting skills/style went along with his other series which sorta made it boring but i still like his shows.

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AHAHA a flying monkey thats such a funny thing and he went from 32 changes to 64 to i dont know what lost track hehe

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i think Dicky Cheung acting is better than chan hou munn. he act more like a monkey. the pa gai is the funniest in this drama series...yo~~yo~~

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the first ones r the best ever... then the remakes just ruins it

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I watched this series it´s a good series. sometimes the monkey and pig make funny things.

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Oo i definitely remember watching this series. pretty old though. Dicky was great. and trust me im sure everyone remember watching this classic.

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dicky's most memorable series. it is hilarious and one of tvb classics...

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i remember watching this when i was little.

it was great. probably one of the first tvb series i've ever watch.

i loved dickey cheung playing the monkey king. he's perfect for that role!

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I love this series a lot. I bought the vcds and I watched it like 3 times and still isnt bored with it. wayne lai as the pig is the best and so as dicky as the monkey. benny chan as the monkey king is good too

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this should be the dicky cheung most funny series. too bad he wasnt in part 2. anyone who is interested in xi you ji should watch this version.

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haven't had a chance to watch this series yet.. i believe this is quite a long series.. have seen odd episodes here and there.. it can be quite boring in some of them..

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I love journey to the west so much in this series even though this series is funny but you do learn your lesson in this series in different misson they have complete love dicky cheung he did a well job in the monkey king. wayne lai as the pig is the best and benny chan as the monkey king is good too . I love wayne lai character he so funny and i love his saiding about how is love if you watch it you should know what i talking about

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i remember watching this series a while back, and it was amazing

the battles and Dicky's acting was GREAT. i loved it so much. ^^;

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This series is so good, I saw it three times and still cant get enuff of it

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I saw this series when I was a kid and it is still my favorite. Personally, its probably one of the best remakes of Journey to the West (and there has been many). I'm saying this base soley on entertainment value. :P

 

D. Cheung was one of the coolest dude back then, especially when this series came out (not a big fan of his nowadays haha). He really did a good job of bringing the Monkey God to life, which is kinda a hard thing to do, because in season 2 (please correct me if I'm wrong b/c I saw this when I was a kid so the memory might be off), Benny Chan played the Monkey God and it was out of sheer determination that I got through it (and the fact that I love folklores/myths).

 

Anyway, watch it if you have the chance, its a great classic!

Edited by perijae

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This is my favorite Journey to the West version. I haven't seen all of Dicky Cheung shows and movies, but I think this is his best. The main cast had great chemistry. I must have watched this like ten times.

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i still think this movie is hilarious even tho i watched it like 100 times because i love how dickys act

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dicky act the monkey was awesome...instead of acting like a monkey he used his activeness to replace it. dont mind to watch it again

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A TVB classics...the sequel was nowhere as good..Dicky Cheung is one of the best comedian tvb series actor of all time!

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