Movie Review: No one told Sony that The Mermaid is Stephen Chow’s best movie in years

Stephen Chow’s The Mermaid was unceremoniously ushered into a few dozen movie theaters in the U.S. with little promotion, signaling that while Sony Pictures may still be handling the comic filmmaker’s work, the honeymoon days of Kung Fu Hustle‘s 2005 wide release in the U.S. have long since passed. It’s nonetheless strange that Sony would take so little care with The Mermaid. Not only did it recently become the biggest hit ever at the Chinese box office, it’s arguably Chow’s most accessible movie since Hustle. A relatively straightforward comic love story/environmental parable, it’s a sharper bit of whimsy than CJ7 and less weighed down with mythology than Journey To The West.

Deng Chao plays the part that probably would have been handled by Chow in years past: Liu Xuan, a wealthy and arrogant businessman who uses sonar technology to disrupt …

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