Wind and Cloud

Reviewed by: do^aho

April 04, 2007

Rating: three

Personally, I think this production needs work, in terms of editing, post sound, cinematography and definitely the direction. The sound ends so abruptly while the vision still carries on, and in certain parts, it seems unfinished. Editing wise, it really needs improvement on transitions between scenes. It came off as rushed and careless, which brings down the whole production value.

Aside from the production, I feel that the script needs work especially towards the end... For example, the scene where Yun tries to save his wife from Jue Xin. It is badly written and hasty as well, almost as if they try to bring a conclusion to the plotline. The way they try to bring in the explanation for Qin Shuang's death comes off hasty as well. The script runs along pretty well, until towards the section where they bring in Xiong Ba again and tries to justify his second appearance by stating that he has become a demon. I do not know how the rest of you guys feel, but it certainly doesn't go down well with me. I feel that unless for a very good reason only then can the character appear again. Otherwise, it is best to leave it alone.

Acting-wise, I think that there isn't much room for me to comment since Sukting has mentioned it all. And like her, I agree that Nie Feng shouldn't be played by Chiu. I mean, Feng is a charming and attractive man whom women will just fall heads over heels in love with. I mean, look at Ekin's portrayal of Feng. He justifies why women are willing to die for him. I am sorry to say this, but Chiu lacks that charisma.

Secondly, Feng is not as naive as Chiu's portrayal made him to be. Don't forget, he used to be under Xiong Ba and although he is a gentle man, I don't think he is that naive a man, considering the tribulations his fate has brought him. One can be naive to a certain degree... not that much, considering he killed as well..

When he entered the world of evilness for the sake of humanity, I can understand that change in character. But what doesn't go down well is the fact that it has to be hammered into us by making the female character, Meng, mention it time after time in the show. It becomes repetitive and is a waste of
screen time.

As for Yun, I think Peter Ho's portrayal is visually comparable to Aaron's except that most of the time, he comes out pretty exaggerated. A pity for he really brings the character out visually, and by that, I mean he looks like Bu Jing Yun.

The only complaint I have would be the way he interprets the character development for Yun towards the second half of the drama. I felt that he was going in the wrong direction. I am not sure whether I am right in this: Yun is a killer with his own sense of justice and code of doing things. The way he portrays Yun in the second half made Yun appear to be soft. No doubt that in every drama, there must be a character arc, but this has to be done in a gradual manner and subtly. If an actor succeeds in doing that, I think he/she is a fantastic actor for he/she is able to bring out the character development and arc to the character she/he is portraying.

As for Wong Hei's portrayal of Qin Shuang, I think he's done a pretty good job. Qin is a kind man who puts other people's interests above him and one who values friendship above anything else. He is one who goes all out in helping a friend and never expects anything in return. He is that kind of man that silently assists anybody needing help and never claims credit for it. It's a shame that no one appreciates these innate qualities in this man. I think Wong has done a very good impersonation of Qin Shuang. He brings out these characteristics but it's so sad that his costume sucks!! And what about his hair-do? Why does he have that ugly side partition hanging down his face?!? Sigh... he is such a good actor, if only the director had spent more time with him... I believe among the three characters, he is the best. At the very least, he manages to give a convincing performance with the role given to him.

Another good actor would be the one acting as Xiong Ba. Unfortunately, he is not as good as he is under the direction of Andrew Lau, the director for The Storm Riders, the movie version. He smiles too often, which ruins the characterisation of Xiong Ba. I don't mind if he smiles in a sense that he has an ulterior motive behind it, but the name Xiong Ba means aggression and power. Weak-willed minds bend under the weight of it. Thus, this should also mean that Xiong Ba shouldn't be one who uses wiles to get his ways. I believe he is a cunning and scheming man, but I don't think he smiles his way through. I haven't read the comic version and thus I do not know how Ma Rong Cheng portrays him, I only guess in context to the words chosen to coin his name.

Story-wise, I really liked it, but not towards the end. There are many disappointing scenes like the two showdowns with Xiong Ba. I also feel the section with the Jue Family is repetitive and redundant.

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