"Triad trouble, family bonds and political tension collide in The Mobfathers, a dark gangland epic from Hong Kong’s prolific Herman Yau.....As the process escalates through turf battles, secret deals with the police and electioneering, The Mobfathers joins other recent pictures combining genre thrills with social comment. Hong Kong’s current divisions make an early showing when Chuck (protagonist of the film played by Chapman To) points out that even a trip to buy groceries involves politics....The Mobfathers may not be the most polished entry in the triad-movie canon, but for devotees of Hong Kong film’s grittier side it’s an encouraging work. Through it, Herman Yau and his collaborators have reconfirmed their efforts to keep local genre film traditions alive and support Hong Kong cinema’s socially conscious side too." Excerpts from Tim Youngs description of THE MOBFATHERS in the Udine FEFF 18 catalogue. Please click here for full article.
Following are excerpts from Hong Kong critic reviews about THE MOBFATHERS (with translation by Carmen Suen Arthur)
Shi Qi (or Shek Kei in Cantonese), Ming Pao Daily, "THE MOBFATHERS is a skillful display of the magic of Hong Kong gangster movies - violent fights, mind-blowing conspiracy, and gangster talk. There is not a single quiet moment. In fact, the movie also elaborates on the emotional and sexual desires of the main characters, which is uncommon in such genre."
立場新聞 MAD House：「電影嘲諷非常露骨，關心政治的觀眾理應看得過癮。電影的喜劇感不錯，黃秋生與王宗堯的演出實在功不可沒，而編劇李敏也應記一功。姜皓文演得不錯，他是唯一一個需要做到黑中有白的角色，又掌握得恰到好處。政治題材不易拍，有訊息又有娛樂性的政治喜劇更不易拍。」
MAD House, Stand House News, "The satirical message of the movie is very blunt and direct. Those who care about politics (in Hong Kong) should get a thrill out of it. The movie, which delivers just the right touch of comedy, features the superb performance of actors Anthony Wong and Gregory Wong. Scriptwriter Erica Lee also did a fantastic job of story-telling. Philip Keung is another star not to be missed - he plays the only character who is a bad guy with a good heart, and he does so convincingly. It's not easy to make a movie with a political message; it's even more difficult to make one that is entertaining and comical."
Using triad politics to view Hong Kong’s electoral system: Herman Yau Lai-to’s new film The Mobfathers high in political undertones: The Mobfathers aims to make locals take a closer look at their city’s government - Review by South China Morning Post Hong Kong. Please click here for full article.
Excerpts from Joel Wicklund from Chicago Now Review /WindyCityCinema/2016/05 entitled TRIAD FORMULA GETS A STYLISH WORKOUT IN THE MOBFATHERS
“The Mobfathers is a solid, entertaining slice of traditional Hong Kong gangster fare.” “...much of the thrilling style that has earned HK cinema a loyal and massive following around the world." "Lording above the internal feud is the longtime triad leader, played by the wonderfully charismatic Anthony Wong (Infernal Affairs, Beast Cops). ,,,,,, Wong’s character steals the movie in a relatively brief amount of screen time.” “Though it’s all safely contained in a fictional mob tale, there are nods to the democratic protests within Hong Kong, where the officially autonomous government is compromised by mainland China’s oversight and oppression of political opponents. Both Chapman To and Anthony Wong have publicly supported the Umbrella Revolution protests and there are rumors they have been blacklisted by Chinese film producers. Director Herman Yau Lai-To is also known for infusing genre material with political relevancy.” "With the exception of some glaringly obvious CGI bloodshed, the movie is very well made, with eye-catching color schemes, precisely detailed production design (the criminal lairs and nightclubs are all memorable) and some nicely choreographed action composed for the widescreen dimensions.” Please click here for the full article. (WARNING: article contains spoilers info).