Fantasy-mystery flick Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon <狄仁傑之神都龍王>, directed by Tsui Hark (徐克) and produced by Chen Kuo Fu (陳國富) opened to an estimate of 64 million RMB on its first day screenings in mainland China. The Hong Kong and China co-production, which stars Mark Chao (趙又廷), Carina Lau (劉嘉玲), and Angelababy, serves as the prequel to Andy Lau’s (劉德華) Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame <狄仁傑之通天帝國> and opened in mainland China on September 28.
Young Detective Dee has the third-highest single and opening day tally of all time in mainland China. Stephen Chow’s (周星馳) Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons <西遊·降魔篇> had set the opening day record with its 76.9 million RMB gross, which was closely followed by the 70 million RMB opening from Guo Jingming’s (郭敬明) Tiny Times 1.0 <小时代1>.
The action-packed film also broke the opening day record for a Tsui Hark movie.
Box office analysts believe that Young Detective Dee’s box office figures may exceed 100 million RMB before October. With mainland China’s recent slump in box office turnouts, critics believe that Young Detective Dee will “breath life” into mainland cinema.
The film was positively received by critics. One film critic Kevin praised, “Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon surpasses its predecessor Mystery of the Phantom Flame. Tsui Hark deserves his title as number one in Chinese-language wuxia cinema.”
Critics also praised the film’s 3D graphics, noting it as one of the best features in the film. One said, “Tsui Hark has surpassed his own invention again with Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon. This time, the fantasy aspect is more emphasized than the mysteries. The film is extremely vivid, beautiful, and entertaining. The fight scenes chase after perfect 3D effects. It is Chinese blockbuster film at its finest.”
Young Detective Dee also sets the record as one of the first Chinese films to include an “easter egg” post-credit scene, a practice that is very common among Hollywood films.
“Even the easter egg scenes were impressive. We finally have a Chinese blockbuster that can save the market!”
“Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon” Trailer
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This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.