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Reminisce on Ng Man-tat’s acting with seven of his best movies

·4-min read
Royal Tramp film still.
Royal Tramp film still.

News of veteran actor Ng Man-tat’s death from liver cancer on Saturday (27 Feb) saddened both the entertainment scene and fans of his works.

Since 1977, Ng had starred in more than 100 movies, including many with Stephen Chow, and television series such as Police Cadet opposite Tony Leung. Yahoo Lifestyle SEA gathers a list of seven movies (most of which are available on Netflix) to reminisce over Ng’s great acting.

1. Royal Tramp

Based on Louis Cha's novel The Deer And The Cauldron, Royal Tramp was one of the top five grossing Hong Kong films in 1992. Starring Stephen Chow, Sharla Cheung, and Ng Man-tat, the story revolves around Chow’s Wai Siu-bo, a pimp that saved Chan Kan Nam, the leader of the revolutionary Heaven and Earth Society.

Tasked to infiltrate the palace as a labourer and steal secret materials, the story follows Wai’s adventure in the palace, aided by Ng’s Hoi Tai-fu, the palace's head eunuch.

2. King Of Beggars

King Of Beggars, a martial arts comedy film, reunites Stephen Chow, Sharla Cheung, and Ng Man-tat on-screen after Royal Tramp's success. The film is based loosely on legends about Beggar So, who had lived in the late Qing dynasty and was one of the Ten Tigers of Canton.

The story follows Chow’s character, So Chan, the spoiled son of a wealthy general, being caught red-handed before the emperor at the Martial Arts Championship, leading to him and his family being decreed to be beggars for the rest of their lives. The story picks up after So was appointed as the chief of the Beggars' Sect, overcoming obstacles in an attempt to save the love of his life.

God of Gamblers II film still.
God of Gamblers II film still.

3. God Of Gamblers II

Following God Of Gamblers' success, God Of Gamblers II stars Andy Lau as Knight of Gamblers, Stephen Chow as Saint of Gamblers, and Ng Man-tat as Blackie Tat.

Sing (Chow), despite being Saint Of Gamblers, is living in poverty as he cannot spend the money won with his supernatural powers. He had to plead the God of Gamblers to accept him as a disciple after his uncle, Blackie Tat (Ng) suggested him to do so. When someone later attempts to impersonate the Knight of Gamblers, it's up to the real Knight (Lau) and Saint of Gamblers to team up and defeat the challenger.

4. God Of Gamblers III: Back To Shanghai

Sequel to God Of Gamblers II, God Of Gamblers III: Back To Shanghai travels back in time to Shanghai in 1937 as the story follows Stephen Chow’s character trying to figure out how to return to Hong Kong in 1991.

In this film, Ng Man-tat acts both as Uncle Tat, uncle to Chow’s Sing in 1991, and as Chow Tai-fook, Sing’s grandfather in 1937. A poker battle between Sing and the French God of Gamblers will decide the fate of Shanghai.

5. A Chinese Odyssey

Loosely based on the 16th century Wu Cheng'en novel Journey To The West, A Chinese Odyssey is a two-part 1995 Hong Kong fantasy-comedy film starring Stephen Chow, Athena Chu, and Ng Man-tat.

With Chow as Monkey God and Ng as Pigsy, the duo is reincarnated as Joker and Joker’s second-in-command respectively when they were thrown out of Heaven due to Monkey God’s attempts at attaining immortality. Part two of the film is a continuation of the duo’s time-travelling adventures, focusing on the now-human Monkey King’s attempts to fulfil his divine destiny.

Love On Delivery film still.
Love On Delivery film still.

6. Love On Delivery

A 1994 Hong Kong comedy film directed by Stephen Chow and Lee Lik Chi, Love On Delivery stars Chow, Christy Chung, and Ng Man-tat.

To prove himself to a love interest (Chung), Chow’s character Ang Ho-Kam learns dubious kung fu from Tat (Ng) to challenge his archrival to a fight. Tat, however, was a swindler taking advantage of Ang's gullibility and teaches him useless kung fu techniques.

7. The Wandering Earth

A 2019 Chinese science fiction film loosely based on the 2000 novella The Wandering Earth by Liu Cixin, the movie stars Qu Chuxiao, Li Guangjie, and Ng Man-tat.

Set in a fantasy future, the story follows a group of astronauts as they guide Earth away from an expanding Sun while attempting to prevent a collision with Jupiter. The fate of Earth now lies in the hands of an unexpected few.

The Wandering Earth is one of Ng’s last works.

READ MORE:

Iconic actor Ng Man-tat dies of liver cancer at 70

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