A Chinese Ghost Story II (1990)

The giant centipede grips one of the heroes in its huge mandibles!
A giant centipede grips one of the heroes in its huge mandibles!

A scholar (Leslie Cheung) escapes wrongful imprisonment and falls for a beautiful rebel woman (Joey Wang), which leads to an adventure involving fights, monsters, and action-packed, supernatural encounters.

Joey Wong
Joey Wang
Poster
Poster
Leslie Cheung and Joey Wong
Leslie Cheung and Joey Wang
Yikes!
Yikes!
Leslie Cheung looks closely at a monster...
Leslie Cheung looks closely at a monster…
Joey Wong levitates
Joey Wang levitates

Ching Siu-Tung’s A CHINESE GHOST STORY (1987) is one of my all-time favourite Hong Kong movies. This follow-up (also directed by Ching Siu-Tung) doesn’t match the charming, madcap, romantic, stylish heights of the original, but it is enjoyable nonetheless, with scenes featuring a humanoid demon monster and an ending involving a devious High Monk who turns out to be an ancient, giant, flying, monster centipede!

Demon monster!
Demon monster!

Let’s face it: you can’t go wrong with a movie that features a massive, killer centipede!

The centipede has mandibles and lots of teeth!
The massive centipede has mandibles and lots of teeth!

The demon corpse-monster is a goofy-looking, full-scale model for a lot of the scenes (intercut sometimes with a man in a creature costume) and it is featured in some fun, imaginative moments. It gets skewered with spears and swords at one point, but this doesn’t stop the monster. Then Imperial Officer Hu (Waise Lee) hacks off the demon monster’s arms and head… but the demon keeps attacking – and the monster uses its ribcage like a giant Venus Flytrap to clutch onto Hu! Awesomeness!

The demon corpse-monster has big fingernails and big teeth!
The demon corpse-monster has big fingernails and big teeth!
The corpse-monster is behind you...
The corpse-monster is behind you…
Hey guys, the monster is above you...
Hey guys, the monster is above you…
A boobytrap fires a bunch of spears into the corpse-monster, but this doesn't hurt it
A boobytrap fires a bunch of spears into the corpse-monster, but this doesn’t hurt the demon…
...it just makes the corpse-monster angry!
…it just makes the corpse-monster angry!
The demon monster's disembodied arm attacks a soldier!
The demon monster’s disembodied arm attacks a soldier!
These are the demon's ribs as they get ready to grab Imperial Officer Hu!
These are the demon’s ribs as they get ready to grab hold of Imperial Officer Hu!

The toothy centipede, that provides the conflict for the finale, is also a full-scale model for a lot of the scenes. This critter bursts out of the ground, flies about with the characters clinging to its back and swallows a couple of them!

Characters find themselves trapped on the back of the centipede
Characters find themselves trapped on the back of the centipede

Even though A CHINESE GHOST STORY II focuses less on the endearing, romantic scenes featured in the first instalment, the sequel does boast lots of fights, magic incantations and flying swords. Wu Ma, returning from the first movie, and Jacky Cheung, playing a young Taoist priest, add to the manic fun.

After Wu Ma stabs the monster centipede he gets splattered with its slime
Wu Ma is splattered with slime after he stabs the monster centipede
At one point characters zip along on flying swords
At one point characters zip along on flying swords
One of the shots of the corpse-monster that utilises the full-scale creature model
One of the shots of the corpse-monster that utilises the full-scale creature model
Another pic of the full-size monster model!
Another pic of the full-size monster model!
She doesn't know what she's touching...
She doesn’t know what she’s touching…

Okay, here’s a final look at the centipede-monster, as it attacks Jacky Cheung…

The critter prepares to swallow Jacky Cheung!
The critter prepares to swallow Jacky Cheung!

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