Why Anita is an amazing, heart-wrenching tribute to the late Hong Kong diva

26/11/2021 6:30:00 AM

Anita is a biographical film about Cantopop singer Anita Mui.

Anita Mui, Sony Pictures Releasing

It has been almost two decades since her death, but Anita Mui is still and will always be dearly missed.

Anita is a biographical film about Cantopop singer Anita Mui .

1. Newbie actress Louise Wong did a spectacular imitation of Mui.Hong Kong model Louise Wong makes her movie debut with an exceptional portrayal of Mui. Apart from her uncanny resemblance to Mui, especially when she sports a pixie cut, the way she talks and carries herself in the film is also very similar to Mui, as if the diva herself is really there. This becomes even more apparent when the film shows actual snippets of Mui, slotted in between Wong’s re-enacted scenes.

The only issue is the film has been dubbed in Mandarin, so some of the emotions may have been lost. The Mandarin dub appears awkward at times, when the voice and emotions don't match the character. I can only imagine how much better it would have been to watch the film in Cantonese.

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It has been almost two decades since her death, but she is still and will always be dearly missed. Here’s why the film Anita is the best way to remember the diva: 1. Newbie actress Louise Wong did a spectacular imitation of Mui. Her initiative CHANGE (Caring Health Anywhere Nails Goal Elderly) offers free pedicures for low-income elderly people who cannot afford healthcare and do not have family to fall back on. Hong Kong model Louise Wong makes her movie debut with an exceptional portrayal of Mui. Apart from her uncanny resemblance to Mui, especially when she sports a pixie cut, the way she talks and carries herself in the film is also very similar to Mui, as if the diva herself is really there.

This becomes even more apparent when the film shows actual snippets of Mui, slotted in between Wong’s re-enacted scenes. (Photo: AFP/Isaac Lawrence) After three years of giving volunteer manicures, Ng was inspired to start her own social enterprise to help those - often aged 65 or older and on social benefits - unable to afford the city's expensive private healthcare. The only issue is the film has been dubbed in Mandarin, so some of the emotions may have been lost. The Mandarin dub appears awkward at times, when the voice and emotions don't match the character. I can only imagine how much better it would have been to watch the film in Cantonese. He describes that day's treatment, a full pedicure, as a blessed relief. Terrance Lau depicts Leslie Cheung, Anita Mui's best friend.

(Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Releasing) 2. Several famous Hong Kong actors, such as Louis Koo, Gordon Lam and Miriam Yeung, are part of the cast. "The more (the manicurists) come, the happier we old people are," the grandmother explained. Throughout Mui’s life, she met various pivotal people who gave her career a boost. Some of these characters include Mui’s fashion designer and close friend Eddie Lau (Louis Koo); the executive of records company Capital Artists So Hau Leung (Gordon Lam); and talent agent of Capital Artists Florence Chan (Miriam Yeung). Among them, Eddie Lau plays the most significant role in the film, forming an invisible yet strong support in her life. (Photo: AFP/Isaac Lawrence) Although the day seems light-hearted, Ng explains that when the elderly don't treat their fungal nail infections - the most common problem - they can face difficulties walking.

3. It depicts the setbacks that Mui faced behind all the glamour. While what we often see is how a star dazzles on the stage, the film portrays the hardships unbeknownst to many.. In fact, Mui had a tough life, having to provide for her family since she was four. Even when she became popular, she was faced with other sets of challenges involving her love life, and of course, her illness.

There were times when she had to bear with the pain from cancer to continue performing, saying, “The show must go on." "When you manicure, the smell and level of dirtiness are very difficult to accept," she said, describing how difficult it was to help one man who was particularly filthy.” Story continues The film is structured linearly, showing various milestones in Mui’s life. Through Wong’s portrayal of Mui’s transition from a young adult till before her death, you can also see how her costumes and make-up change over time. As Mui was known for her bold and ever-changing styles, it was interesting to see how they were re-created in the film, such as the wedding dress that Mui wore during her final concert. Source: AFP/kg. Louis Koo plays Anita Mui’s fashion designer and close friend Eddie Lau.

(Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Releasing) 4. It features Mui’s best friend Leslie Cheung, who took his own life the same year Mui passed away. The highlight of the film would have to be Mui’s story with Leslie Cheung (Terrance Lau), who was another Cantopop sensation during the 1980s. Cheung was not only Mui’s best friend, but he had also been referred to as her family. The film depicts how they met, and how they supported each other at different points of their careers.

The most heartbreaking part is, even though they were each burdened by their own illnesses, they did not reveal their plights to each other for fear of worrying the other party. Directed by Longman Leung, Anita is showing in theatres in Singapore and Malaysia. Get more TV and movie news from Yahoo Life on .