Coming to DVD from director Fruit Chan and Well Go USA Entertainment is the mind tingling look at one bus ride during “The Midnight After.”
“The Midnight After” is based on the story “Lost on a Red Mini Bus to Taipo” by Mr. Pizza, a young writer who posted on the internet forum HKGolden. The web story would make its way to book form soon after.
The streets of Hong Kong are bustling with nightlife and people. Guys hanging out and women out shopping, there is something happening everywhere. When a minibus pulls up to a stop, a group of very different people get on going from Mongkok to Tai Po.
The bus is already feeling the effects of one passenger who is strung out and there is a couple spending their ride arguing. A young man thinking of his girlfriend is seated opposite a young woman wondering why she can’t reach her boyfriend.
Two guys are watching a young woman toward the back of the bus thinking her pretty hot until she smiles at them. Wearing headphones is another young man who is just trying to get home without any problems and a woman with prayer beads seems to know something the others don’t, or is she just a nervous passenger?
Finally, a happy and chatty bus driver who puts the pedal to the metal to get his passengers where they want to go even if he doesn’t know yet it isn’t where he thinks! Going through the tunnel to their destination, it becomes clear to every one on board that there doesn’t seem to be anyone else on the streets and although they can text, no one is responding to telephone calls.
That’s only the beginning of a night of madness from each other, men in masks, and discovering that Major Tom may hold they key to it all.
Cast include: Wong You-nam as Yau Tsi-chi, Janice Man as Yuki, Simon Yam as Fat, Kara Hui as Mook, Lam Suet as the bus driver, Chui-Tien-you as Shun, Cheuk Wan-chi as Pat, Lee Sheung-ching as Bobby, Sam Lee as Blind Fai, Jan Curious as Auyeung Wai, Melodee Mak as Lavina, Ronnie Yuen as Airplane and Kelvin Chan as Glu-Stick.
“The Midnight After” is definitely one for the books! I felt like I was watching the entire film with a question mark over my head. That’s when I realized I had been taken into the story because the characters had the same questions I did. What was happening, how did it happen, where is everyone and how are they going to get out of it all.
In the midst of that is director Chan’s amazing ability to clear the streets to shoot the film! By removing everything there is no distraction to following along with the characters craziness which, I admit, was hilarious at times. Chan directorial history includes the horror film “Don’t Look Up,” “Tales From the Dark 1” and this year’s release of “Kill Time.”
There are shocks, a few jumps, clues that were quick only to lead to other clues and it truly was fun that David Bowie’s song “Ground Control to Major Tom” played an important part in it all.
“The Midnight After” is a film that will wear you out from start to finish. There is a story for each character that plays itself out but also intertwines with everyone on the bus. That’s a lot of information to take in and I almost started a score card on them all.
I enjoyed each of their performances bringing something different to the bus, as it were. The scene in the diner where the group becomes vigilante for a moment was a tad disturbing but that too brings more answers so I went along to see where it would lead. That’s what this film is all about, how far will we go on the ride with these characters until our jaws drop.
The film is in Cantonese with English subtitles and has a running time, literally running, of 121 minutes to discover the secret!
In the end — check the bus schedule for the next destination!