Rating: 5/10
Year: 2002
Genre: Drama
Director: Dante Lam
Cast: Nicholas Tse, Karena Lam, Eason Chan, Candy Lo

I really don't understand the meaning of the Chinese title of this film (Luen Oi Hang Sing, literally translated as Love Planet). What is the connection between love and planet? Apart from the bizarre title, this film itself is also very spooky.

Again, the plot follows the cliche of this genre. Jane (Karena Lam) and Fung (Nicholas Tse) come across each other four times a day, it seems that the affinity is predestinated. Yet Jane is killed in a car accident. Right before the accident, they are thinking about each other, therefore Jane's spirit is able to communicate with Fung. Her dying wish is to complete a dance competition with his teammate (Candy Lo). Will Fung help her?

No doubt Dante Lam was ambitious to create an epic love story, that he managed to insert tons of creative ideas in the film. The main plot is a Ghost-alike love story, with the subplots regarding friendship between Nicholas Tse and Eason Chan/Karena Lam and Candy Lo, and a climax of European castle chase. But sadly to say, most of these elements just do not fit together. They appear totally incongruous and awkward. For instance, this story is set in Hong Kong, why do the grim reapers have to be European Middle Age knights? How come the hell setting has to be shot in France? What is the significance of such arrangements? Do you believe that the castle setting can enhance the romantic atmosphere of the film? I seriously doubt it. Furthermore, how is the dessert Tiramisu related to the love story? Is there any implicit implication? Apart from booming up the budget of the film, the westernized characters and settings are really unnecessary. They do not increase the artistic or entertaining value of the film in any way.

In terms of the narrative, the impotence and inexperience of the director are obvious. Dante Lam failed to take advantage of his inventive concepts and ideas. For instance, Fung is able to restore his hearing ability with the help of Jane's spirit, it is quite an interesting part of the story. But that is it. Dante Lam did not try to further develop this idea. There are also similar examples throughout the film, it is really a big pity to see the lack of follow-up of potential ideas.

Nicholas Tse is not a gangster or speed racer anymore. In this film, he is a quiet and timid part time postman. What is not changed is his pretentious portrayal of characters. I think he really fancy himself as James Dean, that it is unable for him to get rid of this star image no matter he is in a non-gangster film or in reality. As a newcomer, Karena Lam's performance is definitely extraordinary. Her sensibility allows her to command the pace and emotions of the characters effectively. Candy Lo is charismatic as usual, while Eason Chan is only re-enacting the same comical role he has been doing in many films before.

Personally, I do love the beginning of this film. The early encounter of the protagonists is sentimental and imperturbable. The cinematography has its own touch. The sophisticated settings and elegant costume design are also notable. It is very different from what you get from a typical Hong Kong love film in which the focus is always the talking heads while settings and costumes are not stressed at all. However, when the story proceeds, it just goes totally out of control and becomes a big farce eventually.

Don't be deceived by the exceptionally well designed poster of Tiramisu, the moon and the castle are only an illusion, it is just part of the packaging strategy of a very typical commercial film.

VCD (HK version) - If you appreciate the exotic cinematography, get the DVD version. Otherwise, the VCD is quite enough for you to experience this mediocre production.

Reviewed by: Kantorates