God of Cookery (1996)Director: Stephen Chow
Starring: Stephen Chow, Ng Man-Tat, Vincent Kok, Karen Mok
Tagline: Where can I buy some pissing beef balls?
The God of Cookery starts of with a cooking competition between the best cooks in Hong Kong with the famous 'God of Cookery' Stephen (Stephen Chow) presiding over the competition and issuing his harsh criticism to all the contestants.
However, the God of Cookery is a sham. He can't actually cook and is relying on clever marketing and is surrounded by 'yes' men. Enter onto the scene a talented youngster, Bull Tong (Vincent Kok), who is accepted by Stephen as an assistant.
Just as everything seems to be going well, his right hand man (Ng Man-Tat), sets him up for a fall and he loses his empire.
After the new 'God of Cookery' becomes famous, the old God disappears and no-one knows where he has gone, he turns up at a food vendor on Temple Street and is still criticising the food, however he gets beaten up a lot by the gang from the street and is befriended by Twin-Dagger Turkey (Karen Mok), the female food vendor who takes a liking to him.
In a fight between the rival food vendors in which Turkey is one of the bosses of, The Former God speaks out of turn and is about to be punished by the other boss when Turkey saves him and proves that she has really strong arm muscles by cutting a table in half.
It starts to go completely mental after this point, but I'll leave it to you to find out what happens. All I'm going to say is that The Former God of Cookery and the New God face of against each other and we get to meet 'The 18 Bronze Men of Shaolin'.
This is my favourite Hong Kong movie for several reasons: The completely stupid situations, the funny characters and the excellent jokes throughout the movie. This is one of the first movies I actually imported myself from Hong Kong after not being able to find it locally.
As Iron Chef is one of my favourite TV shows, I liked how this movie managed to parody it and make the setting even more over the top at the same time.
I had difficulty breathing after laughing so hard during the '18 Bronze Men' sequences. In particular when some of them are beating up Stephen and the others just stand there posing for effect. Also when they showed the reactions of people tasting the food, I can never read the subtitles as I am usually laughing too much.
The characters are also another great thing about this movie. While Stephen Chow is the main focus, Ng Man-Tat gets to play a 'bad guy' role for a change, which is good to see.
The real star of the movie is Karen Mok as Turkey as she is virtually unrecognisable under her makeup and the mannerisms she adopts for her character. She also gets all the best lines.
If you loved Stephen Chow's Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer, then this movie comes highly recommended.