Hua Li Shang Ban Zu
2015 / 119m - China
Comedy, Musical, Romance
Office poster


January 16, 2016


A pretty special To. Hong Kong cinema isn't really known for its musicals, but whenever they do give it a go it usually ends up being quite special. Office is great despite the musical bits, which is always a bummer for a musical. While the influence on the aesthetic is definitely a big plus, the songs and singing are pretty dire. Maybe I'm just not enough of a Canto-pop fan, but it keeps the film from becoming a personal favorite.

The plot is pretty crazy too. I think this might be the first musical about a company going to market (though I'm certainly not an expert of the subject). When the company goes public, auditors arrive and find some creative bookkeeping, which reveals a hidden relationship between the CEO and one of the board members. Who wouldn't start singing in such a situation.

What will forever stay with me is the superb aesthetic. To plays with lines like nobody has ever done before him. The number of straight objects that zigzag through the screen is simply insane (I realize it sounds a bit odd, but you'll get it while watching). The cast is pretty good and the musical bits are pretty contained, but they still bugged me enough in the end. Worth a watch though, I'm pretty sure you've never seen something like this before.