Mad World

2016

Drama

149
IMDb Rating 7.3 10 1,244

Synopsis


Downloaded times
April 8, 2020

Director

Cast

720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
935.32 MB
1280*720
Chinese 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
101 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.88 GB
1920×1080
Chinese 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
101 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by moviexclusive 8 / 10 / 10

Anchored by career-best performances from Shawn Yue and Eric Tsang, 'Mad World' is a deeply meaningful and genuinely moving portrait of mental illness

'Mad World' is not an easy film to watch, but it is well worth the discomfiting experience. Not quite enough attention has been paid to the plight of mental health patients who try to re-integrate into the community, and certainly too little attention has been placed on the frustration and even exasperation of their caregivers. While the former often find their best attempts thwarted by the fears, biases and outright discrimination of general society, the latter has to contend not only with the same but also the outbursts of their loved ones struggling to overcome their condition, so much so that many often end up in burnout. Both perspectives are vividly portrayed in director Paul Chun's feature debut, which follows Tung's (Shawn Yue) acclimatisation to the outside world after spending a year in a mental hospital for bipolar disorder. Seeing little more that institutionalisation can do for Tung, the hospital contacts his estranged father Wong (Eric Tsang) to look after him, but the latter is frankly completely ill- prepared. A cross- border truck driver who was often absent from home, Wong had pretty much abandoned his mentally disturbed wife (Elaine Jin) and Tung years ago, which Tung inevitably still begrudges him for; after all, that had led to Tung needing to quit his job to take care of her when she became bedridden, and that stress of being the only caregiver, aggravated by her verbally abusive ways, had ultimately led to her accidental death one day and his subsequent admission into psychiatric care. There is plenty in the past that Tung needs to come to terms with on his own, and equally just as much in the present. His friends had deserted him ever since the much-publicised incident a year earlier, and his surprise appearance at a former colleague's wedding soon after his discharge shows how ignorant and bigoted they can be. He wants to make things right with his former fiancée Jenny (Charmaine Fong), who had to repay not just the flat they had bought together but also the moneylenders Tung owed because of a huge loan he took out to finance some risky investments that eventually went south. It doesn't help that social media has fuelled a gallery of judgmental jury, who seize on his unfortunately public meltdown after hearing Jenny's emotive confession of her ordeal to question his mental state and weigh if he should be sent back to hospital after all. Oh yes, the title could refer to Tung's own mind as much as it could of the external environment he has to navigate – and Wong takes swipes at everything from our prejudice against the mentally ill, to the terrible living conditions of Hong Kong's lower-class, and even to the spate of 'banker' suicides in the financial district back in 2014/15. It is to his credit as well as that of screenwriter Florence Chan that their movie never feels the need to scream at or, for the lack of a better word, get mad at these social ills; rather, both display remarkable restraint at simply keeping it authentic, letting their audience make their own discernments rather than lay out the critique for us. In fact, 'Mad World' is much better off by simply remaining at its heart a frank and intimate portrait of Tung's struggle to get back on his feet, anchored by the initially tense but ultimately tender father-son relationship between Tung and Wong. Like we said at the beginning, the struggle is as much Tung's as it is Wong's. Through the course of the movie, Wong has to seriously evaluate if he has the means and wherewithal to care for Tung, especially given how little support he has from his family (his eldest son, or Tung's older brother, has resettled in the United States, staying conspicuously absent and callously disengaged throughout), friends and fellow tenants – and let's just say it says a lot when another caregiver at a carer support programme Wong enrols himself in advises him to consider re-admitting Tung back into hospital under the false pretence that the latter is suicidal. Though more commonly known for his comedic roles, Eric Tsang is in top form here as Wong. In perfectly low-key fashion, Tsang lays bare his character's uncertainties and anxieties at the beginning when asked to look after Tung, subsequent guilt and pain when forced to confront the sins of his past, and eventually resolve to not 'outsource' his responsibilities as a father. Tsang doesn't overplay or overstate Wong's dilemmas, allowing his audience to make sense of his character on their own terms. For that matter, so does Yue, who eschews histrionics in his portrayal of Tung's manic/ depressive state. Proving his mettle as one of the most underrated actors of his generation, Yue gives a layered, nuanced performance that earns empathy without ever playing the 'pity' card. Aside from the fact that Tung's journey to reintegrate back into the community is not an easy one, 'Mad World' is also not an easy fact simply because there are no easy solutions to the issues faced by people like Tung. At the individual level, it isn't easy for the caregiver, as Wong's own experience here shows. At the community level, it isn't easy for neighbours, friends and even relatives to put aside their fears or biases. And at the societal level, it isn't easy to change mindsets borne out of ignorance or worse convenience. But like the quote which bookends the movie, it starts with having a heart for these individuals we often shun, so that however idealistic it may sound, the world may be a little less crazy for them and for us.

Reviewed by lexfiori 8 / 10 / 10

Important topic, cathartic approach

If you have a taste for natural light, crying a lot, and excellently genuine (genuinely excellent) screen writing, this is your movie. Though much of the acclaim I've read by online critics is the realism with which mental illness is treated, it heaps some of the most alienating societal abuses of the mentally ill on one person for full effect, short of failure of the justice sytem. Is that realism? Perhaps not, but it has a powerful political/moral point. The result of this is an almost over sweet tearjerker, but I honestly can not decide whether I am amazed that one movie revealed a seemingly unending store of emotion in me, or whether I am disappointed by Chor Hang Chan's reliance on that catharsis. I would go with the former. Outside of borderline cloying revelations, there are some dark and unforgiving moments, and some genuinely humorous ones, acknowledging that redemption is not the only frame for the issue at hand. The performance by Shawn Yue is well in character, drab and passionate at the right moments. And Chun Wong can definitely be relied upon as a director. And if you watch it for nothing else, the kid is incredibly adorable.

Reviewed by ctowyi 8 / 10 / 10

Compassionate and thought provoking cinema

There have been few note-worthy films coming out of Hong Kong for some time. It does seem that every other output from the studios is a commercial film that tries hard to appeal to the gargantuan China market. In this sense, debut director Wong Chun's Mad World is an audacious and brave film. The subject matter is mental illness and it is remarkable that the film never stoops down low to gain your sympathy through cheap histrionics. The film earns it through superlative performances and keen observations. It not only gets inside the mind space of a mental illness patient, it also studies the plight of the care-giver and the bystanders standing in the path of the malady. Neither does the film shout slogans, point fingers or offer pet solutions. Mad World is an indictment on the social stigma and medical agencies, but how it remains deeply humanist is a deft balancing act. Shawn Yue puts in a career-defining performance as Tung, a bipolar disorder sufferer. His range is commendable and his portrayal totally surprised me. He can start taking on more challenging roles, other than rebellious hunks and rigid police officers. There is a scene of him crying late into the night, every last bit of moisture inside him is pushing out of his eyes and yet he just can't stop. When finally he did stop crying, it is because a precocious little boy who lives next door is whispering a story from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince through the thin wall to encourage him. That scene moved me, I doubt Tung can hear the story clearly, but I think at that point he needed to hear a voice from an understanding person. Eric Tsang as a guilt-ridden father trying to make amends is such a natural. My tears rolled down at a heart rending scene where he explains why he left his family. The reason doesn't make it right, but it is perfectly understandable why he did it. As Tung's illness takes a turn for the worst, his soul becomes a constant battlefield – do I do the right thing or do I do the loving thing? Jin as Tung's embattled mother and Fong as the ex-fiancée struggling to forgive Tung are also pitch-perfect. All four, including screenwriter Florence Chan and the director have been showered with nominations at last year's Golden Horse Film Festival and Hong Kong Film Awards, and some of them have deservedly racked up the accolades. Where Mad World perhaps over-played its hand will be the scenes of the church portrayed as over-enthusiastic zealots and Tung's friend Louis having a turn for the worst at one point. The film felt like it was over-reaching. But I am not taking anything away from the film. This is a compassionate look at mental illness and it looks at the issue from all the angles. I would hardly call it an entertaining film, more of an affective and effective thought provoking piece of filmmaking. Give me thought provoking anytime.

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