One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Review

One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Review | by

Recommended Audience: Fans of Aaron Kwok 郭富城, Yang Zishan 杨子姗, Hao Lei 郝蕾, Andy On 安志杰, Jack Kao 高捷, Matt Wu 吳中天 and romance movie fans

One Night Only Movie Poster

One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Synopsis

One Night Only depicts an overnight romance story between an addicted gambler, Gao Ye (Aaron Kwok), and a prostitute, Mo Mo (Yang Zishan). Gao Ye got himself into a gambling debt threat after being released from prison. Mo Mo met Gao Ye, thinking he would want her “service”.One Night Only StillHowever, instead of paying Mo Mo, Gao Ye forced her to start a black market underground boxing with him using her bondage savings. They go through a series of events—kidnapping, car-racing and killing, only to realize the need to decide which path they want to take before sunrise…

One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Viewer Rating: 4/5 ****

One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Movie Review:

Unlike what the synopsis said, I don’t think this movie is a romance story. It’s a sneak peek into a day in the life of an addict. Simple. Straightforward. A gambling addict whose life was changed within that one day unexpectedly. Choosing this film to watch instead of a blockbuster, I was kind of regretting it 30 minutes into the film. It felt normal, random and I didn’t know what else to expect from this film.
One Night Only Police KissIn most films, the audience could expect what (learning lesson) to get out of the film just based on the title, or the trailer. But I didn’t know what to expect for this movie. Why did a random sex worker knock on the doors of a gambler? Why did the series of incidents -gambling, money lending, fighting etc happen? It just felt like a story with no particular purpose. I was disappointed because I thought Aaron Kwok would be involved in a movie way better than this aimless film. Until the finale which totally caught me off-guard with the underlying story. Dang, this is one film which successfully caught me by surprise.

Nope, I won’t spoil the plot, but you got to read about the cast performance.
One Night Only Aaron KwokAaron Kwok as Gao Ye was disgustingly well-done. I hate gamblers, and he has successfully made me despise his “let’s gamble one more time and recuperate my losses” mentality 30 minutes into the film. Yes, that’s the reason why I was “regretting” because he was so good with his role that I feel like entering the screen and shake him awake from his obsession. And guess what, he spoke in Mandarin for this role so it was awesome not having to hear dubs for once.

One Night Only Yang Zi ShanMichelle-Chen (陈妍希) lookalike Yang Zishan (杨子珊) as prostitute Momo was good in a pretty odd way. Because of the social stereotypes, she is nothing like the prostitutes in the brothels or female dormitories which housed the rest of the girls. In many ways, that made her pretty unbelievable character and I often forgot that she’s a prostitute until it was mentioned again. Yet, it was not possible to deny that she had a great smile and she definitely won my heart (and tears) in the end.

One Night Only Hao LeiDespite the film being set in Thailand, the main and supporting casts were all Chinese and it wasn’t difficult to imagine the story taking place in China, Hong Kong or even Taiwan. Of all the supporting cast, Hao Lei as Aaron Kwok’s wife was one of the more memorable characters. While she didn’t have much scenes, her appearances were all impactful and touching. What touches me the most in this film was how it present to me across as a “life” rather than a “movie”, some lessons are presented across only at the very end, and you will never know what hit you until it did.

Do You Know?

Matt Wu Leste Chen One Night OnlyThis movie was Matt Wu’s (吳中天) directorial debut. The female lead Yang Zishan is his wife. When they were filming this movie, they had yet to announce their relationship status, but Aaron Kwok had already discovered from their little actions.

One Night Only BKKThe film was set in Bangkok as the culture fits the story. Even the prostitute street was filmed along a real red-light district.

Behind The Scenes and Interviews

Check out One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Official Microsite!
One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) is out in selected Shaw cinemas on 28th July 2016.

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*Disclosure: Invitation from Shaw Singapore. No monetary compensation was received for the movie review.

14 thoughts on “One Night Only Movie (天亮之前) Review”

  1. Pingback: Nerve Movie Review |

  2. The synopsis reminds me of someone who is a drug dependent. Anyway, this movie is somewhat interesting. This will surely capture the attention of those who are into action movies.

  3. I like such storylines. Romance that takes place in unlikely situations among unlikely matches is worth watching..

  4. I don’t know any of the actors in the movie but what seems to draw me in is the plot about the underground scheme that’s spinning wildly out of control. It’s a great and stylish melodrama blending crime thriller and romance.

  5. I love that the concept of this movie is such a change from the Western ones I usually watch. Don’t know these actors but they seem great! 😀

  6. Nice! Action thrilled movie puts me up any time! You make me crave to see judging from the ending part of your article. Gambling, casino movie are indeed epic. 5 stars worth it!!

  7. Sounds like a cool movie and it’s definitely action packed too since the whole thing takes place in just one night. You got me really curious about the ending and now I want to see it!

  8. What a high rating. I do not like movies about gamblers. I pity the people around who love them. Sad to say, I doubt he will ever change for the better if this was real life.

  9. I looks like the actors were really convincing to the point of being despicable. This would really be a good one to watch. I hope they did add some lessons on the dangers of gambling.

  10. Quite a random sounding film. I too dont like the “keep gambling” mentality. Although you keep mentioning you regret your film choice – was it any good in the end?

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