Erotic Ghost Story – Perfect Match (Liu Jai Yim Tam Ji Yau Kau)
Director – Lam Yee Hung, Producer – Wong Gong Keung. Production Company – State Billion Ltd
Elvis Tsui (Monk Talkative), Geung Ga Ling (May), Diana Pang Dan (Yinyin), Wong Nei (Miu-Miu)
A man is interrupted by the appearance of the Fairy Yeh. She informs him that his wife Yinyin is really one of Holy Madam’s rabbits who has escaped from Heaven and taken on human form. If she does not return soon, Yinyin will be corrupted by human vices and become a half-human, half-fairy. Yinyin makes an escape. Yeh dubs the husband Monk Talkative and gives him a bell that will help him locate Yinyin. Meanwhile, Yinyin’s sister May escapes to Earth from Heaven to warn her that Holy Madam wants to kill her. In rabbit form, May is rescued from hunters and taken home by Yushu. As Yushu cuddles up to the rabbit in bed, May appears to him and they make love. However, he struggles to explain her to his blind mother, passing her off as a neighbouring girl that he wants to marry. Meanwhile, Holy Madam has sent the third rabbit sister Miu-Miu down to Earth, impelled by dire threats if she does not persuade the other two to return.
Erotic Ghost Story (1990), with its blend of frothy softcore erotica and Chinese supernatural, appears to have been a reasonable hit in Hong Kong. It produced two sequels – Erotic Ghost Story II (1991) and Erotic Ghost Story III (1992). At face value, Erotic Ghost Story – Perfect Match would appear to be a fourth entry in the series. However, this is not the case at all and it is in fact a production made by an entirely different company with a different cast and crew to any of the other films. (Not that any of the other Erotic Ghost Story films were much connected either by cast, crew, characters or plot either). It appears in Hong Kong that copyright laws are not as strict as they are by comparison in the US. In Hollywood, a production company making a film that mimics being a sequel to another film series would surely have been responded to with a deluge of lawsuits. That said, Perfect Match could easily have been one of the Erotic Ghost Story sequels – its plot about three rabbits from Heaven taking the form of human women is quite similar to the first Erotic Ghost Story (indeed, is far closer to the original than any of the legitimate sequels).
Perfect Match mimics the blend of energetic fantasy slapstick and lushly photographed erotic episodes that all the other Erotic Ghost Story films feature. The plot stands still every few minutes for a sexual encounter, which all take place in petal-strewn baths, silk-draped beds and the like. Alas, these seem to almost come at timed intervals and frequently get in the way of and slow down the development of the plot. There are a number of amusing contortions bubbling away underneath – the scholar Yushu pretending to his mother that one of rabbit women is a neighbouring girl he has proposed to, which is screwed up when the neighbour’s aunt comes to visit; the monk and his magic bell encountering the women everywhere – but then along come the various erotic episodes and these plot strands get tossed aside and forgotten. Eventually, the film reaches a arbitrary ending where the three rabbit women just depart back to Heaven.
The whole production is dreary and uninvolving. Crucially, it is lacking in any of the comic ebullience that the other Erotic Ghost Story films had in their better moments. The version seen here is marred by some genuinely awful dubbing, which does not at all sound like anything a native English speaker would ever say.