December 29, 2023

THE BLUE JEAN MONSTER: A Grating Action Comedy

1991 / 96 min
Review by Mr. Bonnie😾

Given the choice between watching The Blue Jean Monster again or sitting in a room for 90 minutes while someone rakes their fingernails across a blackboard, I’d have to think long and hard about it.

Conceptually derivative of 1988’s Dead Heat, I actually had reasonably high expectations for this one. Hong Kong action films of the 80s and 90s often tossed in liberal amounts of comedy…sometimes very broad comedy. When done right, the goofier moments serve as a nice contrast to the mayhem. A film we recently reviewed from the same era, The Last Blood, is an excellent example. 

The Blue Jean Monster is the polar opposite. For the most part, not only is the comedy phenomenally inane, the film is pretty irritating right from the get-go. Shing Fui-On plays Tsu, a dedicated cop whose wife is expecting their first baby. During a gunfight with a vicious gang of bank robbers, he is shot and killed, only to be resurrected by a cat (!) and a bolt of lightning. Technically dead, he’s impervious to pain and bullets, which gives him a distinct advantage when getting revenge on the gang who killed him…so long as he keeps recharging himself.

"I think I'd like rabbit for dinner."
The realization that he’s dead leads to the film’s one amusing (and gross) scene, where something he eats plops right out of his bullet wound…only to be accidentally eaten by another guy. Fui-On himself delivers a decent performance, though it mostly consists of reacting to a cavalcade of the most obnoxious, unlikeable cast of characters I’ve seen in years. This includes his bitchy wife, his idiotic informant and the snotty teenager whose life he saves multiple times.

Despite the additional horror elements, The Blue Jean Monster features little actual horror or action. A majority of the narrative is dedicated to interminable attempts at crude comedy, exacerbated by tremendous overacting and jaw-droppingly stupid dialogue. While I have no problem with lowbrow humor per se, what’s on display is mostly so insultingly juvenile that I considered shutting the damn thing off on a couple of occasions. 

By the time of the bloody climactic shoot-out, not only was I ready for the whole thing to end, I wanted most of these characters to get caught in the crossfire. Blending horror, action and comedy is a lot of fun if done right, even when dumbing things down for the yahoo crowd. Instead, The Blue Jean Monster ends up being the movie equivalent of fingernails on a blackboard.


MAN MADE MONSTER - Interview with assistant director Sam Leong.




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